A James Beard award-winning chef and an inspiration for a Disney princess, Leah Chase has spent seven decades stirring, chopping, spooning, basting and, in general, creating countless delicious meals in her establishment, the famed Dooky Chase’s Restaurant in the Treme-Lafitte neighborhood.
Chef Chase first began cooking in 1946. Her restaurant continues her traditions into the present day, offering her informal lunch buffet and more formal dinner of classic New Orleans cuisine such as Shrimp Clemenceau, red beans and Chicken Creole.
Frequently called the “Queen of Creole Cuisine,” Chef Chase became the inspiration for Princess Tiana in Disney’s animated 2009 classic The Princess and the Frog. Her honors have been many: Chef Chase received the 2016 James Beard Lifetime Achievement Award, the Lafcadio Hearn Hall of Honor at Nicholls State University's John Folse Culinary Institute, the Candace Award, the Freedom Foundation Award, the NAACP Human Understanding and A.P. Tureaud Awards, the Times-Picayune Loving Cup and the Weiss Award from The National Conference of Christians and Jews. She is the author of the Dooky Chase Cookbook.
When it comes to New Orleans soul food, there will never be anyone more soulful than Chef Leah Chase. Her legacy will continue to live on. Come. Sit at the table and taste her story.