The Chase family is heartbroken to share the news that our Mother, Grandmother and Great Grandmother, Leah Chase, passed away surrounded by her family on June 1, 2019. Leah Chase, lovingly referred to as the Queen of CreoleCuisine, was the executive chef and co-owner of the historic and legendary Dooky Chase’s Restaurant. She was a major supporter of cultural and visual arts and an unwavering advocate for civil liberties and full inclusion of all. She was a proud entrepreneur, a believer in the Spirit of New Orleans and the good will of all people, and an extraordinary woman of faith.
Mrs. Chase was a strong and selfless matriarch. Her daily joy was not simply cooking, but preparing meals to bring people together. One of her most prized contributions was advocating for the Civil Rights Movement through feeding those on the front lines of the struggle for human dignity. She saw her role and that of Dooky Chase’s Restaurant to serve as a vehicle for social change during a difficult time in our country’s history. Throughout her tenure, Leah treasured all of her customers and was honored to have the privilege to meet and serve them.
While we mourn her loss, we celebrate her remarkable life, and cherish the life lessons she taught us. The Family will continue her legacy of “Work, Pray, and Do for Others.”
Grateful To You,
The Chase Family
In lieu of flowers please make donations to the Edgar L.“Dooky” Jr. and Leah Chase Family Foundation – P.O. Box 791313 New Orleans, LA 70179
As the pillars fall
And history fades away
Angels eat gumbo
Sad day, though we know Heaven is the best place ever. Rest well, Mama Leah. 💕
A true raconteur, freedom fighter, black Creole queen, and truly the grande dame of Creole cuisine. ✨
Jessica Harris, an author and expert on food of the African diaspora, in a 2012 interview:
“She is of a generation of African-American women who set their faces against the wind without looking back.
Leah Chase served presidents and celebrities, she served generations of locals and visitors, and she served her community. She was a culture-bearer in the truest sense. We are poorer for her loss, and richer for having known and having loved her. She will be badly missed.
Ian McNulty’s lovely obituary
Poppy Tooker celebrates her friend on her show Louisiana Eats.
Dames de Perlage tribute to Chef Leah