Business Insider list focuses on noteworthy culinary stars.
As Paula Deen convalesces from foot-in-mouth disease, Business Insider reminds the public at large that there are plenty of amazing Southern chefs besides the high-profile caricature.
Among them is a name familiar to many in the Mid-South already and projected by the article to become a potential national name. Kelly English of Restaurant Iris has come along way since shifts at Harvest Cafe in Oxford. Those who haven’t ventured to the Memphis restaurant may have had the pleasure at least of his street food creations earlier this year as part of Big Bad Pop-Ups with John Currence in Oxford.
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Accolades are nothing new for the chef, who has worked hard to earn them. Named by Food & Wine Magazine as a “Best New Chef,” English is inspired by the familiar flavors from his childhood in southern Louisiana and incorporates that inspiration into each dish he cooks. English currently implements this inspiration for food and service in his premier restaurant, Restaurant Iris in Memphis, Tennessee, and at Kelly English Steakhouse at the Hollywood St. Louis Casino and Hotel in St. Louis, Missouri.
After putting himself through college at the University of Mississippi by working as a cook in local kitchens, English decided to get serious about his passion for food. He graduated from the prestigious Culinary Institute of America at the top of his class, and studied both in Spain and France. The majority of his culinary education, however, came under the direction of award-winning celebrity Chef John Besh.
— Tad Wilkes, email@example.com