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Orlando’s James Beard Award Nominees for 2024

The 2024 Restaurant and Chef Awards semifinalists for the James Beard Awards® presented by Capital One have been announced and there are several local Orlando chefs recognized this year. It really speaks to the growing recognition of the quality of our local Orlando food and beverage scene.

Nominees will be announced on Wednesday, April 3, and winners will be announced at the James Beard Restaurant and Chef Awards Ceremony on Monday, June 10 at the Lyric Opera of Chicago.

Established in 1990 and first awarded in 1991, the James Beard Foundation’s Restaurant and Chef Awards are one of five separate recognition programs of the James Beard Awards. The awards recognize exceptional talent and achievement in the culinary arts, hospitality, media, and broader food system, as well as a demonstrated commitment to racial and gender equity, community, sustainability, and a culture where all can thrive.

The 2024 Restaurant and Chef semifinalists are recognized across 22 categories. Learn more about the James Beard Awards policies and procedures here.

The local Orlando chefs and restaurants who were recognized include:

Best New Restaurant

  • Kaya, Orlando, FL

Best Chef: South (AL, AR, FL, LA, MS, PR)

  • Jennifer Berdin and Mark Berdin, Kadence, Orlando, FL
  • Henry Moso, Kabooki Sushi, Orlando, FL
Chef Henry Moso of Kabooki Sushi

Kaya is a Filipino casual fine dining restaurant located in Orlando’s Mills 50 district, showcasing a lively and flavorful taste of Filipino techniques, ingredients, and stories alongside the freshest Florida ingredients and a thoughtful beverage program.

Chef Lordfer “Lo” Lalicon of Kaya

Jamilyn Bailey, co-owner of Kaya alongside Lordfer “Lo” Lalicon, told us “It’s a huge honor to represent our culture and our city! We are filled with so much gratitude for a whole community of people who come together to help us put Filipino cuisine and Orlando on the map.”

“The timing couldn’t be better – seven months of municipal construction at the main intersection coming to the restaurant has definitely had an impact on business. We hope this recognition will help remind people about this special placed tucked away in the Mills50 and Lake Eola Heights neighborhoods.”

In addition to their “sama sama” tasting menu, Kaya also offers a-la cart andd walk-ins, as well as a tropical outdoor patio bar called “Bayani Bar”.  They also serve a Bongga Brunch on Sundays from 10am-2pm featuring Filipino influenced breakfast.

Congratulations to all!!


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