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Emeril Lagasse is a celebrity chef best known as the host of the television show Emeril Live, his lines of products and restaurants, and his catchphrases.
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The following year, Time magazine classified Essence of Emeril as one of the 10 best shows on television.
Using catch phrases like “Bam!” and “Kick it up a notch!” Lagasse showcased his personal cooking style and flair for the dramatic in his next TV project, Emeril Live! Featuring a live studio audience and a four-member band, the series catapulted Lagasse into a realm of celebrity rarely enjoyed by a chef. Capitalizing on the popularity of Emeril Live!,
the Food Network took the show to cities like Philadelphia and Chicago, where Lagasse drew arena-sized crowds. In 2000, an episode filmed in Las Vegas featured a young couple taking their wedding vows while Lagasse stood by as best man. Although popular among viewers, many culinary writers denounced Lagasse’s theatrical displays, deeming his antics to be flamboyant, devoid of substance, and more entertainment than instruction. In May 2003, the Food Network signed Lagasse to a five-year, multi-million dollar deal for 90 new episodes per year.
In addition to his hectic TV schedule and restaurant empire (which now includes six establishments), Lagasse has recently endorsed his own line of cookware called Emerilware. Lagasse’s other endeavors include regular guest appearances on Good Morning America, as well as four bestselling cookbooks—Louisiana Real and Rustic (1996), Emeril’s Creole Christmas (1997), Emeril’s TV Dinners (1998), and Every Day’s a Party (1999). In May 2000, Lagasse appeared on the wildly popular game show Who Wants to Be a Millionaire, where he donated his $125,000 in winnings to a New Orleans charity for children with learning disabilities.
From 1989-96, Lagasse was married to fashion designer Tari Hohn. He wed his third wife, real estate broker Alden Lovelace and the couple have a daughter Meril Lovelace Lagasse and a son E.J. (Emeril John Lagasse IV) born in March 2003.
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