"DON'T EAT BEFORE READING THIS.....
....A New York chef spills some trade secrets", an
essay by chef Anthony Bourdain in the April 19 issue
of The New Yorker. Starts out on a bit of a stomach-
turning note with some practices of restaurant
kitchens,(of whom I'm sure would prefer this not be
common knowledge), and develops into his explaining
the quirks and circumstances that make a kitchen
profession bizzarely appealing. He states that he is
presently chef de cuisine of an old-school French
Brasserie/Bistro. Does anyone know which that may be?
This is an amusing read; I'm sure anyone who has
worked behind the scenes can relate.
My boy was hired at a Las Vegas Strip Hotel.
(Bouchon at the Ventian.) last summer after concurrently graduating Vocational School/High School.
He was givin a copy of Mr. Bourdains "Kitchen Confidential" for Christmas 2005 from his Sous`Chef.
He`s been in love with cooking ever since he saw Jacques Pépin do a show about "cookihg basics." Involving omelets on PBS.
Waking me from my nap, begging me let him use the stove to practice his lesson.(He was 10-12)
After digesting Mr. Bourdains persective and advice.
I now understand(better) My sons passion and his incredible fucking luck.
I know he will do the trade proud.
Las Vegas, NV.
Wow, talk about people having radically different reactions to the same thing. As opposed to not eating "before" reading "Kitchen Confidential", I had a distinct lack of appetite after reading it...
"Kitchen Confidential" left a really bad taste in my mouth. As a long-time restaurant worker, I resented Mr. Bourdain's cashing in on what I felt was sensationaling and wildly exagerating, if not very possibly inventing, downright criminal abuses such as fish restaurants tarting up spoiled fish. He made it sound as if that kind of atrocity was common practice. Enough said.
But, I can't close without noting your getting away with using that fine old English expletive without being deleted. Well...just don't get too cocky and start throwing around REAL dirty words, like "diabetes". Heh heh...
I haven't read Bourdain's article, but the NYC reaction
is similiar to another piece run by the New Yorker Magazine about a chef called "Otto" ( around 1981 ).
In the article, this chef( named " Otto " for reasons of confidentiality,) stated that many French restaurants,
including that citadel, Lutece ,served meat with frozen water crystals. After working in a few ' good french restaurants' I tend to agree that they'll stoop pretty low for a buck.
I'm the 25 year lifer-chef who wrote the New Yorker
piece mentioned here. Just stumbled across this site
and am pleased at the number of serious foodies/ CHEF
fans..and industry types who seem to be posting with
regularity. The article is NOT on-line, as far as I
know. And it was toned down considerably by the
editors, I can assure you. The full length deranged
rant will be published as a non-fiction Bloomsbury
book titled KITCHEN CONFIDENTIAL: Adventures In The
Culinary Underbelly in year 2000. So more to come..In
the meantime, I'll be writing for FOOD ARTS
regularly..the current issue has a piece on my recent
adventures in Tokyo-Food Heaven, by the way--and if no
angry vegetarians or well-done eaters shoot me on my
way to work some morning--there will probably be more
pieces in the New Yorker. The poster who pointed out
that the butter thing..and the Monday fish biz is old
news is absolutely right. Don't worry ..the worst--and
best..is hopefully yet to come. Sodomy in The Dry-
Goods Area! Chilean Sea Bass: The REAL Story!
Restaurant Owner Syndrome-How to Identify the
Symptoms!! Emeril Lagasse-The REAL Piltdown Man? And
MORE! Where Chef's Eat! Eric Ripert's Penis: Is it As
Big As That Blender He's Holding In The Naked Chef Ads?
Inquiring Chef's Want To Know!! Veritas-New Best
Restaurant In NYC? Fulton Street Horrors..and MORE
re: Anthony Bourdain
Hey Anthony, glad you found us, good to have you
One reason we have such a great crowd of serious food
people is that our message postings tend to be
unusually informative and entertaining; this is because
we discourage promotional kinds of messages. You've
told us all about your upcoming projects (which sound
interesting!); now we all look forward to any
contributions you can find time to make to our chow
re: Anthony Bourdain
I grabbed an old issue of FA before hitting the crapper and I'm sorry to say, I missed the original article there about Don't Eat... I am now leaving the house to go to Barnes and Noble to pick up a copy of the book.
That was the most enjoyable crap I've ever taken in my life. I'm going to put it [the book] in the employee bathroom at the café so everyone else can enjoy it as well.
re: Rosa Rasiel
Wow, I am so excited to see that THE Anthony Bourdain actually posted on this site!
I just read Kitchen Confidential and A Cook's Tour and loved them both. I laughed out loud and was sick to my stomach! Now I am in the middle of reading Typhoid Mary. I am also a fan of his show on the Food Network. I just wish they'd run it more often. It is only on once a week at one time. Maybe if they didn't run Emeril 300 times a day they could run other shows.
Anyway, I am a librarian and I am starting a "Foodie" book discussion group after the holidays. We will be reading books by and about chefs. Anthony's books are all on the list.
Maybe someone has some other good recommendations.
Tony Bourdain is just a person like the rest of us. Yeah, he's a cool guy but he's not a god. Read all of MK Fisher's books and check out some of the really old Escoffier cookbooks because there's quite a bit of explanation and narration in them besides the recipes. I have an antique copy of "A Guide to Modern Cookery" and I read it every now and then just for the commentary.