A new generation of shrimpers, oyster farmers, and fishermen is breaking with tradition and introducing cutting-edge techniques to Gulf waters. But as always, the final link between catch and consumer are the cooks that feed us. Luckily, Gulf Coast chefs have never commanded a larger profile, with luminaries such as John Besh, Chris Shepherd, and Donald Link touting its best producers on a national stage. Here, some signature dishes conceived around this inspiring new wave of seafood.

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By Chris Hughes