New Orleans, LA (September 15, 2005) – Chef/Restaurateur Emeril Lagasse has announced his dedication to the rebuilding of the city of New Orleans. Lagasse plans to reopen his New Orleans restaurants as soon as possible. Famous for his innovative “new New Orleans” cuisine, Lagasse is the owner of three New Orleans restaurants including Emeril’s in the Warehouse District, NOLA Restaurant in the French Quarter, and Emeril’s Delmonico in the Garden District. Lagasse’s corporate office, Emeril’s Homebase, is also located in New Orleans. Emeril’s Homebase houses Lagasse’s restaurant operations, as well as cookbook and recipe development and testing, product shipping, the emerils.com website, and a store front.
“Over the past two weeks, I have focused on making sure my family, my friends, and my staff are safe,” says Lagasse. “The city of New Orleans is my home and it is a place that I love and my heart goes out to the many victims of the hurricane. I am completely dedicated to rebuilding this great city.”
“We are very concerned for our many employees and their families who have been displaced by this disaster,” says Lagasse. “We have been in contact with many of our staff, but there are also many who we have not yet been able to reach. We ask them to please call us toll-free at 1-877-578-8884 and let us know how they and their families are doing. We have tried to place as many of our employees as we can at our existing restaurants – many have relocated to Atlanta, Orlando, Miami and Las Vegas where they have family or friends. We’ve also received a generous outpouring from other restaurateurs around the country willing to help place our employees in jobs in other cities.”
“At this time, we are still assessing the extent of damage to the restaurants and our Homebase office,” says Eric Linquest, Vice President of Emeril’s Homebase. “However, it appears that the neighborhoods where our restaurants are located have been spared the major flooding that took place in other areas of city. It’s our hope to open as soon as the city is safe for our employees to return, and its safe to open our doors.”
“The New Orleans restaurant industry has an unbelievable spirit – and we’re all dedicated and passionate about our cuisine, and our community,” says Lagasse. “I have no doubt that it will be a struggle, but I look forward to building a new New Orleans and an even better food city in the future.”
Bio information: Chef, Restaurateur, Television Personality and Author
Emeril Lagasse originally moved to New Orleans in 1983 to work for Dick and Ella Brennan, at their legendary restaurant, Commander’s Palace, where he was executive chef for seven and a half years. In 1990, Lagasse opened Emeril’s Restaurant in the chic Warehouse District in downtown New Orleans. Lagasse is now the chef-proprietor of nine restaurants including three in New Orleans, two in Las Vegas, two in Orlando, one in Atlanta and one in Miami. Lagasse is a national TV personality. Lagasse joined the Food Network in 1993 and celebrated his 1500th show with the network in 2005. He is the host of both “The Essence of Emeril” and “Emeril Live”, which reaches over 78 million homes daily. Lagasse is also the food correspondent for “Good Morning America” and appears on Friday mornings.
Lagasse is also a best-selling author. In 1993 he published the best-selling cookbook Emeril’s New New Orleans Cooking, which introduced his creative approach to Creole cuisine. Nine other books have followed including Louisiana Real and Rustic, Emeril’s Creole Christmas, Emeril’s TV Dinners, Every Day’s A Party, Prime Time Emeril, Emeril’s There’s A Chef in My Soup, From Emeril’s Kitchens, his second children’s cookbook, Emeril’s There’s A Chef in My Family and Emeril’s Potluck. His eleventh book, Emeril’s Delmonico will debut in October 2005. In September 2002, Emeril established the Emeril Lagasse Foundation to support and encourage programs creating developmental and educational opportunities for children. Lagasse’s corporate office, Emeril’s Homebase, is located in New Orleans. Emeril’s Homebase houses Lagasse’s restaurant operations, as well as cookbook and recipe development and testing, product shipping, the emerils.com website, and a store front for Lagasse’s signature products.
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