Kitchen Confidential : Adventures in the
by Anthony Bourdain
The following are random samples of reviews
Loved it! August 14, 2000
Reviewer: A reader from Burbank, CA USA
I borrowed this book from a friend who loved
it and so did I. Of course, you need to actually
POSSESS a sense of humor to enjoy it. I especially
loved the chapter about his entire day. Anthony
writes from the hip. He tells it like it
happened. It's HIS story. I applaud his culinary
efforts and I learned things from this book.
I was in the kitchen with him when the shipment
was late. I could see the sweat dripping
from his brow during the dinner rush. I was
at that table in Japan watching him drown
himself in sushi. Anyone that can transport
a reader across an ocean has done something
truly reat. However, he did not make me want
to be a professional cook, and I'd never
want to marry the guy, but it was an enjoyable,
frenzied ride. Sure he's arrogant and cocky,
but he's got cohones. That's so refreshing
in these times of nauseating political correctness.
Lighten up, people!!
P.S. Everyone who lambasted Anthony
few typos better take
another look their own reviews before
open their big mouths again.
Reality does bite-sometimes it bites hard, August
Reviewer: Michael McCullen from Columbia,
SC United States
As a working professional chef, and
graduate, I thouroughly enjoyed this
from start to finish. Yes, he dwells
much on his and others drug habits,
are a very real part of the business,
in and day out. I howled out loud with
at some parts of the book, and nodded
head at others, knowing exactly what
trying to say, even if it was directed
to those of us who have made the restaurant
business our life. I sent this book
mom and dad with a note stating that
is what my life has been like, only
the heroin and cocaine. The stress,
and cuts, the mentality of cooks digging
in for the siege at Khe Sahn, they
very real, and not just in New York.
I hated to finish this book., August 14, 2000
Reviewer: Holly Smith from Vero Beach,
Tony Bourdain was so delightful on the TODAY
show that I ordered KITCHEN CONFIDENTIAL
the very day I saw him. I ate up every page,
laughing aloud throughout. From his early
travels in France, through the CIA, Provincetown,
and finally to his semi-grownup New York
experience, he describes the life of the
kitchen gypsy with tongue firmly in cheek.
And from now on I'll only eat out on Tuesdays.
Want to visit the places in the book, August 14,2000
Reviewer: firstname.lastname@example.org from Langhorne,
I read the book on a long flight and
it. He is colorful writer and person.
like a companion book and map with
places he discusses in the book - you'll
feel the same way.
Just Not Enough Seasoning, August 15, 2000
Reviewer: Chad Spivak (see more about me)
from North Miami Beach, Florida
Anthony Bourdain definately could have used
an editor in completing this book. I was
surprised by the typos, and overall organization
of the book.
Kitchen Confidential is not a tell-all book
about the behind-closed-kitchen-doors business,
but more of a personal life story about the
author. In the book, we find out about his
raw oyster-eating youth, and his dabbling
with drugs later on. He did lead an interesting
life, and his climb to his prestigious status
as a top chef is well documented. But, there
is very little else.
He uses a lot of cooking terms that I truly
didn't understand, and he
doesn't define these until you are almost
at the end of the book. I was mildly pleased
with his not holding anything back, as he
tells it like he sees it, but the language
was either too descriptive or not detailed
enough in their respective parts. I made
it to the end of the book simply because
I wanted to see what the seemingly arrogant
Mr. Bourdain was going to do next.
In all honesty, it was a wild ride of a story,
but better structure and the help of an editor
would have made it a much nicer read.
somewhat interesting, though vulgar and disappointing, August 15, 2000
Reviewer: Michael K. McKeon from Seattle,
I anticipated some shock value being associated
with this book. However, there are relatively
few titillating facts or revelations in this
book. Unfortunately, it largely diminishes
the respect of readers who recognize the
yeoman work and assume artistry being inherent
in chef's work.
Perhaps Mr. Bourdain does accurately summarize
the mindset and lifestyle of chefs and their
kitchen staffs. I suspect, however, that
he is more likely to be describing the restaurant
scene in Manhattan than accurately summarizing
it nationally, much less across the world.
Bourdain's depiction of his experience with
the fastidious and quality focused Tokyo
restaurant scene undermines his thesis that
the book's earlier characterizations are
It is discouraging, because Mr. Bourdain
effectively develops in the reader a distain
for the profession and those drawn to it,
leaving one with the impression that it is
a magnet for maladjusted low lives who have,
at best, marginal ethics.
This is a cynical and egotistical work. Mr.
Bourdain acknowledges, and wallows in his
excessively positive self image. He goes
to extreme lengths in an effort to prove
that this is a manly profession, salting
it with excessive (and unnecessary) vulgarity,
references to aberrant -- albeit heterosexual
-- predelictions and practices, and numerous
homophobic remarks. Yawn. This simply indicates
significant insecurity and a poor self image
not far from the surface. Perhaps I am inferring
this from the author's continual allusions
to his former drug addiction and significant
consumption of alcohol and tobacco throughout
While the gourmand willl find a number of
informative and interesting, ultimately
is a depressing book. It leaves you
a sense of distain, distrust, and some
for those in the restaurant business,
you are left thinking work too hard
little and waste their lives. One suspects,
and hopes, it is more autobiography
an accurate description of the profession.