Pam Liberda, head chef and owner of Waldo Thai, 8431 Wornall Rd., has been nominated as a chef semi-finalist for one of the prestigious 2023 James Beard Awards. Liberda was nominated along with two other Kansas City chefs in the Midwest Division for Best Chef. The other two chefs are Michael Corvino with the Corvino Supper Club, 1830 Walnut, and Nick Goellner with The Antler Room, 2506 Holmes Rd. The three Kansas City semi-finalists compete with 14 other nominated chefs from Missouri, Kansas, Iowa, Minnesota, Nebraska, North.
Originally known as Thai Place, Waldo Thai opened at its current location in 2018 in a small shopping strip at the northeast corner of 85th and Wornall. The restaurant offers elevated Northern Thai cuisine. Liberda is also well known for her events there that combine efforts with other local chefs and bartenders.
Other restaurants in Kansas City that were nominated as semi-finalists on a national level include:
- Outstanding Chef – Johnny Leach with The Town Company, 1228 Baltimore
- Outstanding Bakery – Yoli Tortilleria, 1668 Jefferson St.
- Best Hospitality – The Restaurant at 1900, 1900 Shawnee Mission Pkwy
- Best Bar – Drastic Measures, 5817 Nieman Rd.
The final nominees will be announced on Wednesday, March 29, and winners will be celebrated at the James Beard Restaurant and Chef Awards Ceremony on Monday, June 5, 2023, at the Lyric Opera of Chicago.