about bluestem

Their dream became a reality when chefs Colby and Megan Garrelts opened bluestem in March of 2004. With Chef Colby’s Progressive American Cuisine and Chef Megan’s new varieties of American desserts, bluestem is dedicated to providing not only a meal, but a truly memorable experience. The restaurant’s unadorned elegance, staff dedication and attention to detail allow you to simply settle in and enjoy your stay.


bluestem has received local and national accolades including being named as a 2015, 2016, & 2017 James Beard Semifinalist for “Outstanding Restaurant”  for an invigorating marriage of cuisine and hospitality. Chefs Colby and Megan invite you to experience all that bluestem has to offer, from cocktails and snacks in the bar, to a tasting menu in the dining room, or even  late night drinks and dessert.


For employment opportunities please direct resumes to the following:

General Manager Taylor Tantillo: taylor@bluestemkc.com

Chef de Cuisine Joshua Walker: josh@bluestemkc.com


For media inquiries  please contact:

Megan Garrelts



For all charitable requests please contact:

Jamie Friedrich



*Charitable requests must be submitted at least 60 days prior to the event date and all requests must have a completed Donation Request Form and your organization’s Tax Exempt Letter attached otherwise they will not be reviewed.


Donation Request Form Click Here



bluestem the cookbook

Bluestem the Cookbook is available for purchase at bluestem restaurant for $45.00+ tax

Made in America cookbook

Made in America Cookbook is available for purchase at bluestem restaurant for $21.99+ tax


Colby and Megan Garrelts

Owners / Chef & Pastry Chef

Megan and Colby Garrelts are the chef-owners of Bluestem, a 2015, 2016, & 2017 James Beard Semifinalist for Outstanding Restaurant, as well as Rye Leawood and Rye Plaza. Chef Colby is a 2013 James Beard Foundation Best Chef: Midwest award winner, 2005 Food & Wine Top 10 Best New Chef and has had his cuisine showcased in the Wall Street Journal and on the cover of Saveur Magazine. Chef Megan is a James Beard Semifinalist for Outstanding Pastry Chef and her recipes have been featured in numerous national publications including Bon Appétit, Food & Wine, Wall Street Journal and Saveur.



Taylor Tantillo

General Manager

Taylor Tantillo is the general manager at Bluestem in Kansas City, MO. The Kansas City native began his restaurant career at the age of14, and he knew early on that the restaurant industry was his passion. It would be during his college years in Fort Collins, CO that Tantillo would finely hone his hospitality skills by gaining experience and knowledge in craft cocktails, specialty beers, and fine wines at two locally-owned restaurants, Café Vino and RARE Italian.


Joshua Walker

Chef de Cuisine

Joshua Walker is the chef de cuisine at bluestem in Kansas City, Missouri and he is a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America. His interest in cooking started at a young age. In his teens, Joshua made the connection between social bonds, community and food preparation as he cooked and grilled for friends on weekends. His restaurant industry experience started at the age of 16 with his first job, washing dishes at a local pizzeria in his hometown of Springfield, Missouri.


Lyndsi Demicco

Pastry Sous Chef

Lyndsi Demicco is the pastry sous chef at Bluestem. She is a native of Butler, Mo., and grew up with two grandmothers who were very good cooks. They made a family favorite, fried chicken, and taught Demicco how to make pies. And when it came time to cook the Thanksgiving spread, she got to help with the dinner. Demicco's mother and father were always very supportive of her early interest in cooking. When she was seven or eight, they bought her cookbooks and then would purchase all the ingredients for recipes she wanted to make. While other young girls wanted Barbie dolls, Demicco asked for cooking tools.


Jake Ortner

Bar Manager