With a love of New Orleans ingredients and multi-cultural influences, chef de cuisine David Slater leads the kitchen at renowned chef Emeril Lagasse’s first restaurant, Emeril’s in New Orleans.
Slater spent his youth exploring one of the most cosmopolitan and multicultural cities in the world–Toronto. He cites his grandparents, who were of Russian and Romanian heritage, as a significant culinary influence on his lifelong passion for cooking. As a child, he was intrigued by the blending of cultures in their cuisine and absorbed their love of food and local ingredients.
After graduating from the Florida Culinary Institute in West Palm Beach in 1998, Slater arrived in New Orleans, working in the prestigious kitchens of the Windsor Court Hotel and Restaurant Cuvée. Slater joined Chef Lagasse’s team in 2001, working alongside Culinary Director Bernard Carmouche at Emeril’s Orlando. By 2005, he returned to New Orleans to work at Emeril’s as a sous chef. After Hurricane Katrina, Slater was forced to evacuate to New York where he worked in a number of popular Manhattan restaurants until the restoration and reopening of Emeril’s in December 2005. Slater then became the executive sous chef under chef de cuisine Christopher Lynch in 2007, assuming full command of the kitchen in January 2008.
With a passion for New Orleans food, local products and culture, Slater continues to inspire New Orleans locals and visitors daily with his creations in the style of Chef Emeril’s signature “New New Orleans” cuisine. Slater’s expressions of Chef Emeril’s bold cooking philosophy have garnered many local and national accolades. He was also featured in Food & Wine magazine’s list of critic’s best recipes for 2010 and named a “Rising Star” by Star Chefs in 2013.