The long-awaited follow-up to the mega-best-seller Kitchen Confidential
In the 10 years since his classic Kitchen Confidential first alerted us to the idiosyncrasies and lurking perils of eating out - from Monday fish to the breadbasket conspiracy - much has changed for the subculture of chefs and cooks, for the restaurant business and for Anthony Bourdain. Medium Raw explores those changes, moving back and forth from the author's bad old days to the present. Tracking his own strange and unexpected voyage from journeyman cook to globe-traveling professional eater and drinker, and even to fatherhood, Bourdain takes no prisoners as he dissects what he's seen, pausing along the way for a series of confessions, rants, investigations, and interrogations of some of the most controversial figures in food.
Beginning with a secret and highly illegal after-hours gathering of powerful chefs that he compares to a mafia summit, Bourdain pulls back the curtain, but never pulls his punches, on the modern gastronomical revolution, as only he can. Cutting right to the bone, Bourdain sets his sights on some of the biggest names in the foodie world, including David Chang, the young superstar chef who has radicalized the fine-dining landscape; the revered Alice Waters, whom he treats with unapologetic frankness; the Top Chef winners and losers; and many more.
Always he returns to the question "Why cook?" Or the more difficult "Why cook well?" Medium Raw is the deliciously funny and shockingly delectable journey to those answers, sure to delight philistines and gourmands alike.
©2010 Anthony Bourdain (P)2010 HarperCollins Publishers
"The food orbit is [Bourdain’s] element, and chapters on today’s leading figures—from chef David Chang to critic Alan Richman—display his access, outspokenness and comedic gifts....Mr. Bourdain is a vivid, bawdy and often foul-mouthed writer. He thrills in the attack, but he is also an enthusiast who writes well about things he holds dear." (Wall Street Journal)
“Full of things everybody in the food world thinks but nobody will say...If [Bourdain’s] sharp eye and his wicked tongue have brought him acclaim, what’s kept him in the spotlight is his heart. Like Oscar Wilde, he’s a moralist in the guise of a libertine. Long may he prosper.” (Denver Post)
“Bourdain has insight, access and good taste, and he’s a naturally engaging writer...Bourdain is a hopeless romantic when it comes to food and the people who cook. The subtitle’s real valentines are two elegantly written profiles.” (New York Times Book Review)
If you go into this expecting Kitchen Confidential you will be disappointed. KC is about a young Tony Bourdain. This book is all about a grown up Bourdain. It's about his opinions on things like food critics, well known chefs and the food network. The thing about Anthony Bourdain is that he's so good at being a snarky dick that even if you don't agree with something he says, you can't help but laugh and want to slap him on the back and buy him a beer. I'm glad the he narrates his books because no one else has THE voice to do it. This book is laugh out loud funny and all around awesome!
Sure, I'd love to hear your story....
My patience for Anthony Bourdain and his nose-in-the-air attitude about all things food has limits...and this book ended EXACTLY when they were reached. I don't think openly admitting you're a jerk and then acting like a jerk exempts you, but it does make listening to the wonderful writing much easier for people like me who like the behind the scenes stories of restaurants that I'll never eat in.
The man is funny, erudite, and so ridiculously opinionated you can almost forgive him anything. Almost. But this book is really for people with a high tolerance for all things food who aren't afraid of a lot of bad language and brutal attacks on perfectly fine people that Tony has decided are beneath him. This book goes well with a spoonful of sugar.
Bourdain's reading of his book was outstanding. The information was a tad disjointed. I felt as if I had just gotten up from a long conversation at the table with the author, rather than read his book. This isn't necessarily a bad thing.
One of the most well traveled and interesting men on the planet writes a book about what he thinks is interesting, who is good at cooking (and why) as well as seeking a modicum of respect for the service/cooking staff that work to create our dining experiences. He also has some cogent and pithy information about food itself.
Anthony Bourdain for President.This man knows how to tell the truth and boy does it hurt.I do not often listen to authors who read their own books,(usually psychologists),but Mr. Bourdain is the only one who could tell his own tale so gloriously.
This book is like a post script to Kitchen Confidential. I loved it. I love his voice and reading of it. I cannot possible add to the major critical reviews (the positive ones). WARNING: not for the faint of heart ! Anthony does not bother with word filters...and does not need to in my opinion. It is part of who he is.
Excellent narration and stories, at turns biting then effusive then sentimental. Worth it even if you've read the book already, as Bourdain's voice adds a layer that prose alone does not convey.
Made me laugh out loud and muse about my own professional choices and wish I could articulate them with such honesty, witt and intrigue. Thanks Anthony - I come away feeling enriched and empowered.
If you like Anthony Bourdain, or, like me, love him and find endless enjoyment at hearing him take the piss out of everything and everyone worthy of a good reality check, this is for you. He transitions between his infamous self-banter and descriptions of places, people and food you only wish you could be a part of one day.
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