August 23rd, 2010
03:15 PM ET
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New Orleans, Louisiana (CNN) - I'm standing in a land of culinary legends with steaming bowls of turtle soup, plates of deliciously seasoned Louisiana blue crabs, Creole cochon de lait, and too many delectable desserts to imagine swirling past on the raised trays of waiters.

The smell of some of the world's finest cooking fills the air, along with the steady hum of expertise as each piece of beef is seared, each shrimp broiled, each crusty baguette done to perfection.

This is the kitchen at the New Orleans landmark, Commander's Palace, where Paul Prudhomme, Emeril Lagasse and so many others have sharpened their knives and palates. And in the cherished seat of executive chef these days, Tory McPhail knows he is not merely presiding over a history of gastronomic excellence, but also building up a cornerstone of this city's comeback from Katrina.


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Filed under: Cuisines • Hurricane Katrina • New Orleans • News

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