Anthony Bourdain’s Lebanon perspective

Shee-yit, I’ve got a blog!Anthony Bourdain is the anti-celebrity chef with a taste for Steak and The Ramones – that alone makes him my kind of guy, but he also does deadly keyboard. I pilfered copies of “Kitchen Confidential‘ and ‘A Cook’s Tour‘ last Thursday, and have read the first and am halfway through the second. The former is his trip through the many kitchens he’s worked in and celebrates the merry bunch of rogues he’s worked with in his career, showing you what happens through the kitchen doors – the pressure chefs are under and the extremes they go to when it’s time to unwind.

It’s heady stuff, interspersed with simple hints for cooking better at home for hacks like you – and you DO feel like a hack after reading of his pursuit of not just excellence, but consistent excellence in the midst of a mad rush of customers when you’ve just sliced your hand open. Borudain’s a big believer in the team ethic, from his ‘never call in sick’ motto to loving passages on the language chefs use to rip piss out of each other. He’s so cool it hurts, and his books make you feel hungry, which is good food writing in my book.

Bourdain went to Lebanon to cover the city’s rejuvenation, walking right in the middle of that fucked up situation – this report (shitty registration required) is light on food, but high on the frustration of the Lebanese, and his own with his President more interested in bread rolls than a Middle East solution. I think I’ve got a new hero.

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