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Since 1946, Leah Chase has been in the kitchen Dooky Chase’s Restaurant in New Orleans. She’s served Quincy Jones, Jesse Jackson, Duke Ellington, Thurgood Marshall, James Baldwin, Ray Charles, former Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama, and many others.
Quite simply, she’s a legend in the city. Her restaurant was flooded with 5 1/2 feet of water from Katrina and closed for two years. Now 92, she speaks with Lizzie O’Leary from her kitchen, where she still shouts out orders to her staff every day.
Click the media player above to hear Chase’s story.
Correction: A previous version of this story misstated Leah Chase’s age. The text has been corrected.