LIer a finalist for James Beard best chef award

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The North Fork Table ... Inn in Southold The North Fork Table ... Inn in Southold is one of the North Fork's leading restaurants. Photo Credit: Kirsten Luce

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The dish on Long Island's restaurant and food scene.

Gerry Hayden, partner in The North Fork Table & Inn in Southold, is a finalist in the James Beard Foundation Awards for best chef in the northeast.

It's the second straight year that Hayden is a finalist. No Long Island chef has ever won a Beard Award.

Hayden, who's battling Lou Gehrig's disease, no longer is the day-to-day chef at the four-star restaurant.

He has been a semifinalist for three consecutive years. The awards will be announced on May 6 at Avery Fisher Hall, Lincoln Center.

The competition for the best chef/northeast award includes Jamie Bissonnette of Coppa in Boston; Joanne Chang of Flour Bakery & Cafe in Boston; Melissa Kelley of Primo in Rockland, Maine; and Barry Maiden of Hungry Mother in Cambridge.

The North Fork Table & Inn, 57225 Main Rd., Southold; 631-765-0177.

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