Welcome to the first blog in our series highlighting American chefs.
American cuisine is so diverse and always evolving that we wanted to focus on some chefs and cooks who have influenced us and our tastebuds.
Our first chef is Leah Chase. Known the Queen of Creole Cuisine, Mrs. Chase was a cookbook author, television cooking show host, and, with her husband, the owner of Dooky Chase’s Restaurant in New Orleans.
Born in 1923, Mrs. Chase highlighted the Creole cooking of her heritage. Taking over his parents’ sandwich shop, she and her husband, Edgar ‘Dooky’ Chase II, turned it into a world-renowned sit-down restaurant. Serving classics such as red beans and rice, fried chicken, po’boys and Mrs. Chase’s famous creole gumbo, the restaurant became an integral part of the African American community, including being a meeting place for those working in the Civil Rights movement.
Inducted into the James Beard Foundation’s Who’s Who of Food & Beverage, honored with a Southern Foodways Alliance lifetime achievement award and loved throughout New Orleans, Mrs. Chase passed away in 2019 at the age of 96.
Dooky Chase’s Restaurant is still in operation and is a must-stop when visiting The Big Easy.