Book Review – Kitchen Confidential

If you’re reading this, and you haven’t already read Kitchen Confidential, I have three words for you:


Seriously, though. I’m no book reviewer, but I am an unapologetic fan of Tony and his endeavors.This year is the 15th since Bloomsbury decided to publish this ~300-page rag about the culinary industry, based heavily on an earlier article written in the New Yorker, titled “Don’t Eat Before Reading This” (amusingly enough, sounding more like a cross between a cautionary label and a Buzzfeed headline every day).

The premise of the book? He talks about his life as a chef; one which was brought to a screeching halt shortly after the publication of this book, and replaced by a life as a writer, spending the next 15 years hopping around the world to exotic locales and talking tours following the breakout success of “Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations” on the Travel Channel. The book is gritty, harsh, foulmouthed, and unabashedly honest. From his first oyster in France, to the rickety shack in Provincetown, to the Rainbow Room and Les Halles, to Tokyo and beyond, we learn such practical advice as: Don’t eat seafood on a Monday, stay away from places with the stink of failure, and never, ever trust a store touting “Discount Sushi”.

If you haven’t read it yet, it’s available nearly everywhere at this point; I got my paperback copy of the 2001 revised edition from a bookstore in Grand Avenue Mall for $9.

At this point, I have to apologize to Sydney for having largely ignored her in favor of reading in the week or so since I bought the book. I’d like to blame it on Anthony Bourdain, but it’s definitely all my fault.