Chef Jeff Henderson
Chef Jeff Henderson rose from humble beginnings in South Central Los Angeles to become the first African-American executive chef at the Bellagio Hotel. He has gone on to become a successful TV host with a cable show on the Food Network, a nationally syndicated series called, Family Style with Chef Jeff and the host of Flip My Food. When he isn’t cooking on TV he’s a highly sought-after motivational speaker, sharing the secrets of realizing your potential at schools, organizations, and Fortune 500 companies across the country.
The American Tasting Institute has named him Las Vegas Chef of the Year.
HarperCollins published his life story in the New York Times best selling book “Cooked”. His success as an author landed him on Oprah. Shortly after that TV appearance, Sony Pictures bought the rights to his book and his life story, which is currently being developed into a major motion picture.
Jeff has taken advantage of his exposure to inspire disadvantaged young adults and at-risk youth. In addition to his high profile speaking engagements, he makes regular appearances at prisons and inner-city youth programs all around the United States.
Today Jeff shares his knowledge and excitement for food through his speaking career, his cooking shows and his popular cookbooks. His story has been featured on Good Morning America, The Today Show, CNN, ABC World News Tonight, The Steve Harvey Show, USA Tofday, People Magazine, New York Times, Newsweek, and the Washington Post.
Jeff currently resides in Las Vegas where he spends as much quality time as possible with his wife Stacy and their five children.
The City of Longview Texas hosted the annual 4th of July Fireworks and Freedom Celebration this year which included a concert and festival with activities for the whole family throughout the day at the Maude Cobb Convention and Activity Complex.
Neal McCoy has released ten studio albums on various labels, and has released 34 singles to country radio.
In 1993, Neal McCoy broke through with the back-to-back number 1 singles No Doubt About It and Wink from his platinum-certified album No Doubt About It.
His commercial success continued into the late 1990s with two more platinum albums and a gold album, as well as six more Top Ten hits.
Neal returned in early 2003 with The Luckiest Man in the World, following it with That’s Life in 2005. A seventh Top Ten hit, the number 10 Billy’s Got His Beer Goggles On, came in 2005 from his self-released That’s Life.
Music of Your Life, a big band jazz and country amalgam with Les Brown, Jr. recorded for a public television special, appeared in 2011, with a new studio album, XII, finally arriving in 2012.
Neal also supports his own charity organization: East Texas Angel Network, which is committed to the enhancement of the lives of children of East Texas who are living with terminal or life-threatening diseases.
The Kinfolk Brass Band
The Kinfolk Jazz & Brass Band started in 2005, and is currently directed and managed by brothers Percy and Richard Anderson. Playing music has taken the Anderson brothers around the world, touring Germany, Switzerland, Spain, Italy, Turkey, and France.
The Kinfolk Brass Band is at the forefront of the New Orleans Brass Band renaissance. They fuse numerous styles of music, incorporating Mardi Gras chants, New Orleans Funk, and modern jazz ,with an old world traditional brass band sound.
The band has performed at festivals, weddings, jazz funerals, and corporate events. Playing venues ranging from local clubs and grand ballrooms to second-line parades in the streets, the Kinfolk Brass Band has been enjoyed by millions of people all around the world. In 2009, Kinfolk Brass Band released their debut album, entitled Bourbon Street Parade. Over the past year, Kinfolk has performed in over 100 weddings and conventions, making them the most requested brass band in the City of New Orleans. Most recently, the band has performed at prestigious events such the the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival, the BCS Allstate Sugar Bowl, and the 2012 Olympics in London.
The Kinfolk Brass Band embodies the unique sound of the City of New Orleans. Whether performing on a large stage, at a street parade, or in an intimate setting, the Kinfolk Brass Band provides the highest quality of entertainment with their animated style and energy. They are sure to be the highlight of any event.
Percy Anderson was born in New Orleans in 1976 and is the leader of Kinfolk Brass Band. He first started playing music in marching bands in Jr high school, under the direction of the late Donald Richardson. In 9th grade he was introduced to Jazz by an Asst. band director who was also a member of De’jean Olympia Brass Band. Percy has been a Jazz musician since 1993. Percy played with many bands in New Orleans before forming the Kinfolk Brass Band after the major disaster that followed hurricane Katrina.
Richard Anderson co-directs Kinfolk Brass Band and like his brother, Percy, first started playing music in his Jr. high school band under the direction of the late Donald Richardson. In 8th grade he was introduced to Jazz by an Asst. band director who was also a member of De’jean Olympia Brass Band. Richard later attend Southern University & AM in Baton Rouge where he studied under Mr. Alvin Batiste (Jazz Program) and received his Bachelor Degree in Music. Richard gained a lot of experience playing with various bands until becoming a founding member of Kinfolk.
Noel Freeman was born in New Orleans in 1988 and has been playing the trumpet since he was 11 years old. He started playing Brass Band music in 2004 with the Truth Brass Band. The following year he joined the Kinfolk Brass Band.
Byron Bernard Byron “Flee” Bernard’s professional music career began in 1988 under the Olympia Brass Band, performing with the Olympia Junior Band, out growing the name a couple of years later, which became the Young Olympians in 1992, We got the name Soul Rebels from Cyril Neville. As the group leader, He played the tenor, alto saxophone. In 1994, when New Orleans lead the nation in kiling, He arranged musically and vocally the popular song, “Let Your Mind Be Free”. After a 6 year stint with the band he became a member of the Rebirth Brass Band with whom he played until 2007. Since that time he have worked with numerous bands and groups, but the majority of his time is spent playing with the Kinfolk Brass Band.
Frank's Pizza Napoletana
FRANK’S specializes in the area’s only true Pizza Napoletana. Our pizzas are prepared the same way Neapolitan pizzas have been made for well over 200 years. Everything from the Caputo flour and the San Marzano tomatoes that we use, the strict techniques that we follow, our Stefano Ferrara oven and the Mecnosud dough mixer and the way use them…all follow strict Neapolitan tradition. FRANK’S also offers daily pasta specials, creative, made-from-scratch appetizers, soups, toasted Panini, salads and desserts. FRANK’s bar offers an extensive selection of wines that will fit any taste and budget, craft beers both on tap and in bottles as well as scratch-made cocktails. Our food and spirits are served in an upscale, relaxed setting that merges the feel of a traditional old world Neapolitan pizzeria with beautiful modern-contemporary architecture.
FRANK’S goal is to be a truly great, neighborhood restaurant that delivers one of a kind quality and is the best at everything we do. We want to keep it simple; buy the best ingredients, hire the best people, make the best dough, make the best pizzas, make the best drinks, provide the best service in a fun, lively and inviting atmosphere. We work hard everyday to get it right because we care. We strive daily to provide genuine hospitality and great unique products and want our customers to want to come here and come back again and again.
By day, Sara is the marketing director for Academy Award and Emmy winning Moonbot Studios in Shreveport, La. I have been cooking since I was a teenager and learned by sitting on a stool next to the amazing women in my family who were all great cooks. My husband Chris and I love southern culture and food and have a podcast/blog called All Y'all: allyallblog.com
Try Sara's grandmother Ma Jane's famous Rice Dressing
1/2 pound ground beef1/2 pound ground pork
1 1/2 pound shrimp (peeled and deveined)1/2 large onion and bell pepper (chopped)
1 1/2 celery stalks (chopped)1/2 cup each green onions and parsley
1 tsp garlic powder1/2 tbsp roux
1/2 tsp Kitchen Bouquet (to darken if needed)2 cups Cooked rice (can use up to 6 cups)
2 ounces Season All Seasonings1 tbsp cooking oil
1/2 cup water
The prep time includes peeling the shrimp. In a large roaster or heavy duty pot, add oil and brown the beef and pork. Drain any excess oil and meat fat. Add the Cajun Trinity (onion, bell pepper, and celery), garlic powder, roux and Kitchen Bouquet. Blend the mixture together and 1 cup cold water.
Bring to a boil, lower the heat and simmer for 30 minutes. (Note if water goes down, add more water to keep the mixture in a watery gravy-like stew consistency.) Add the shrimp, parsley, and green onions. Cook for three minutes, take off heat and cover pot. Let the heat of the mixture finish cooking the shrimp.
Add the cooked rice to the mixture keeping the rice moist. All done.
Charisse Gibson has worked in newsrooms across South Louisiana and South Mississippi. She was named Morning News Anchor of KSLA News 12 This Morning March, 2013. Since joining the #1 Morning Show in the ArkLaTex she started the Family First franchise, featuring stories about the issues families face daily. She made it a priority to serve her community by mentoring children at the Renzi Education and Art Center and speaking at several events that directly affect young, impoverished teens. Gibson is also on the advisory board for Renzi Education and Art Center and Susan G. Komen of NWLA. She is a proud recipient of the 2014 African American "Make A Difference" Achievement Award. Charisse is a public speaker, host and member of the National Association of Black Journalist. She considers herself a "Flea Market Junkie," always finding old treasures and turning them into something of value. You can catch Charisse weekdays in the ArkLaTex on KSLA News 12 This Morning.
Porter and Luke's
Porter and Luke's was established January of 2013 after being completely remodeled from the previous Zeke's. We have a main dinning room that seats up to 96 people, as well as the Duke Room which holds up to 34 people. The Zeke Room is reserved for private parties, we can comfortably seat 50 people and YOU get to decide how you want the room setup. The Zeke Room is great for anything from a business meeting to a party (they offer an open bar if requested). If you would rather just stop in for a drink, we have a state of the art 30 foot granite bar with a great drink selection and plenty of seating. Our food is freshly made and all seafood is brought in daily. Chef Vincent's Lunch and Dinner Specials change daily and feature some of our greatest cuisine creations. Our most popular dessert dishes are bread pudding and the many different types of cheesecake we serve, all of them homemade. Whether you are craving great Louisiana seafood, Italian pastas, or if you just have a sweet tooth, Porter and Luke's is here to serve you!
Richard Anderson co-directs Kinfolk Brass Band and like his brother, Percy, first started playing music in his Jr. high school band under the direction of the late Donald Richardson. In the 8th grade he was introduced to Jazz by an Asst. band director who was also a member of De'jean Olympia Brass Band. Richard attended Southern University & AM in Baton Rouge where he studied under Mr. Alvin Batiste and recieved hsi Bachelor Degree in Music. To learn more about Richard Anderson and the Kinfolk Brass Band Click Here
Percy Anderson was born in New Orleans in 1976 and is the leader of Kinfolk Brass Band. He first started playing music in marching bands in Jr high school, under the direction of the late Donald Richardson. In 9th grade he was introduced to Jazz by assistant band director who was also a member of De'jean Olympia Brass Band. Percy has been a Jazz Musician since 1993. Percy played with many bands in New Orleans before forming the Kinfold Brass Band after the major disaster that followed huricanne Katrina. To learn more about the band Click Here
Gerard Maras, though not a native of New Orleans or even Louisiana is a well known figure in the recent culinary history of this food-loving culture.Coming to New Orleans in 1983, via Commanders Palace and restaurant “matriarch” Ella Brennan, Gerard would find his new home. Prior to his arrival, he had been schooled in French Classical cooking in New York and Palm Beach Florida. New Orleans seemed a strange new land, with a culture unlike any he has seen. The food, he soon realized was reveled and held sacred to the proud people of this city and state… “They lived, they ate, they drank in a constant celebration…but most of all they ate”. Food is the nucleus and driving force of this land.
Gerard soon moved from Commanders Palace to Ella’s new Bistro in the French Quarter, put at the helm of a premiere new concept for the city, Mr. B’s Bistro. He quickly discovered the passion his clientele had for food and the bounty of beautiful fresh produce and seafood that was available to him. Along with the then ‘New Garde’ of chefs, Emeril Lagasse, Paul Prudhomme, Susan Spicer, Frank Frank Brigtsen and Jamie Shannon, Gerard began networking with farmers and fishermen to bring these products into his restaurant, long before the farmers markets and “farm-to-table” surge had begun. It was this that shaped his food style and career. The freshest product, simply prepared.
For 15 years Gerard ran the brigade of cooks and chefs at Mr. B’s, teaching technique and inspiring them in his passion for fresh product. Many of these young cooks are now the owners and chefs of some of New Orleans finest eating establishments. Gerard opened Gerard’s Downtown, earning accolades both locally and nationally, rated one of the top 15 new American restaurants, by Travel and Leisure its first year and several other awards and favorable articles from media across the country.
In 1993 Gerard bought a farm in Franklinton Louisiana and started growing some of his own produce for his kitchen, fresh farm eggs for baking, micro greens for salads, baby brussel sprouts, peppers,and a variety of product that would enhance his menu. He still uses these products in his catering and private cooking classes because freshness is the key ingredient to truly wonderful food.
Today Gerard teaches private classes at the New Orleans Cooking Experience in New Orleans as well as bringing his expertise into the homes of “foodies” for private classes. His catering of weddings, parties and special events is unsurpassed. Private dinners with menus created by the chef and host are truly special. Whether you are hosting a dinner party, a wedding or just want to learn new recipes and techniques, bringing this esteemed chef into your kitchen adds that personal touch to a memorable evening.