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Chef Edward Lee and 610 Magnolia

Chef Edward Lee became proprietor of 610 Magnolia, located in Old Louisville, when he was 31.

610 Magnolia serves a New American cuisine, blending eclectic and classical European techniques and using organic products, when available. The fine dining restaurant has been in operation for over 30 years.

In this dining segment, "Louisville Life" meets Lee, goes inside his unique establishment, and learns why he's making such a buzz on the national food scene.

Chef Lee, a New York City native , has had a lifelong love of food and began working in restaurants at 14 (one of his first customer was actress Kim Bassinger), cooking in several restaurants in the newly built Trump Tower on 5th Ave. He graduated magna cum laude in literature from New York University but returned to the culinary world after a brief stint in publishing.

Lee learned about 610 Magnolia when a customer told him about then owner Ed Garber.

Lee visited Louisville during Derby Week 2001 and returned in March 2003 to study under Garber for several months. Garber’s approach mirrored Lee’s involvement in the farm-to-table agricultural movement. And Lee was impressed with Kentucky’s rich array of growers. Ultimately, Lee decided 610 Magnolia would be the perfect place to continue his culinary mission.

Chef Edward Lee has cooked at the prestigious James Beard House in Manhattan on several occasions (photos from a March 2010 event are seen in this segment, courtesy of photographer Eileen Miller) and he participated in a celebrity chef event with the organization during the 2010 World Equestrian Games.

Program 422
Churchill Downs executive John Asher, Fourth Street's Theater Square Marketplace, Chef Edward Lee of 610 Magnolia, gardening expert Cindi Sullivan and more on this edition of "Louisville Life". (#422)