Last night's episode of No Reservation condensed a documentary of Anthony Bourdain's early fame into the hour-long format, interspersed with current-Tony's comments. It's classic Bourdain: the whole thing is basically one-liners. His friends and loved ones (including his Mom!) drop by to offer rather strong opinions on Bourdain's transition from cook to writer to television host. On to the Quotable Bourdain — feel free to add your picks in the comments below.
1) On his motivation: "I looked out the window and saw my chef having sex with a woman in her wedding whites, and I thought, you know, 'I want to be a chef!'"
2) On the well-done pepper steak for table 24: "They'd like it sliced, please. Maybe they'd like us to chew it for them, too."
3) On his fame: "I was hoping for, at best, a sort of cult success in the tri-state area."
4) On tradition: "We had a little ritual at the beginning of each shift, we'd put on the soundtrack to Apocalypse Now, soak the whole stovetop in brandy, and ignite it along with the Jim Morrison song 'The End.'"
5) On carnivores: "There is a direct correlation between sense of humor and intake of animal protein."
6) On vegans: "They're the Hezbollah...They share a lot of similarities with dangerous fundamentalist groups."
7) On the biggest difference in his life after Kitchen Confidential: "My rent is paid, reasonably on time. That's really new. That's a first in my life."
8) On meeting Eric Ripert for the first time: "I would have crawled naked across broken glass to get here."
9) On having lunch at Eric Ripert's restaurant Le Bernardin: "It's like sex, you don't talk about it afterwards."
10) On the man versus the myth: "Writers, all writers, are a disappointment compared to their fiction or compared to their work."
11) On people who said nice things about him for the documentary: "Don't they show that stuff on A&E after I've been in some horrible, fatal car accident with a tranny hooker?"
12) On writing: "Somebody asked me, what have you learned as writer? Nothing. Honestly? I'd love to say that I've really been working on honing my craft these last ten years. I write the way I talk. I still don't agonize over sentences."