Craftsman: John Besh

By: Billy Reid's The Journal
Photo: Rush Jagoe

New Orleans chef John Besh launched his fourth cookbook, Besh Big Easy, this week. With 10 acclaimed New Orleans restaurants and two more in Baltimore and San Antonio plus a television resume including Chef John Besh’s New OrleansChef John Besh’s Family Tableand most recently, host of Hungry Investors, he’s used his influence and know how to help revitalize his beloved New Orleans by establishing the nonprofit John Besh Foundation. The foundation helps disadvantaged minority youth earn culinary degrees and leadership skills through scholarships and mentorships in effort to maintain the diversity and cultural traditions of south Louisiana.

Alongside the launch of the new book, Billy designed a custom apron in selvedge chambray with copper rivet details and leather tie straps, complete with Chef Besh’s signature Sazerac recipe printed on the inside pocket. “Every good cook needs a good drink!” Chef says. Proceeds from the sale of these aprons will benefit the John Besh Foundation.

Chef Besh will be visiting several of our stores for book signing events, where revelers will enjoy small bites from the new book and Sazerac cocktails. Before he hit the road, Chef Besh spoke with the Journal about "Besh Big Easy," the foundation and why New Orleans is “the culinary soul of the United States.” Rush Jagoe photographed Chef Besh at his home.