J&W alumnus to give lecture at university
Emeril Lagasse — probably the first to earn the title “celebrity chef” — will make a fast visit Monday to Johnson & Wales University.
Simmer down, “Bam” fans: Mr. “Pork Fat Rules” won’t do any public appearances. He’ll do a cooking demonstration and give a lecture for students, have dinner at an undisclosed location and leave town Tuesday.
But it’s a coup for the Charlotte campus, which has been trying to host Lagasse since it opened in September 2004.
Lagasse is a J&W alumnus. He graduated from the Providence, R.I., campus in 1978 before a career that has included restaurants from New Orleans to Las Vegas, cooking shows on the Food Network, his own line of cookware and seasonings, and even a short-lived NBC sitcom. He’s been a supporter of the school through it all, holding a university-wide golf classic that has raised more than $1.6 million for scholarships.
Officially, Lagasse is coming to Charlotte to dedicate the campus’ classical French kitchen, which is named for him. He was supposed to come in September 2005, but the visit was postponed because of Hurricane Katrina.
“We’ve been looking to honor him,” said J&W spokeswoman Melinda Law.