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Watch Alex Atala Decapitate a Chicken on Stage at MAD

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Hillary Dixler Canavan is Eater's restaurant editor and the author of the publication's debut book, Eater: 100 Essential Restaurant Recipes From the Authority on Where to Eat and Why It Matters (Abrams, September 2023). Her work focuses on dining trends and the people changing the industry — and scouting the next hot restaurant you need to try on Eater's annual Best New Restaurant list.

Here's video footage from food and travel writer Alexandra Forbes showing chef Alex Atala of D.O.M. in Brazil (currently ranked #6 in the world) beheading a chicken on stage at this year's MAD Symposium. (See Eater's recap of MAD.) Atala killed the chicken in front of an audience of chefs and food geeks as a way of illustrating the idea of his lecture titled "Death Happens." That phrase was also written on Atala's t-shirt. In the lecture, Atala suggested that death is inextricably linked to food and cooking. (For this particular chicken, death was also inextricably linked to attending exclusive food events.) Atala — who will be co-curating next year's symposium with founder René Redzepi — earned huge applause and cheers from the crowd for this dramatic finale. Go, watch:

Video: Alex Atala at MAD 3

· Alex Atala at MAD 3 Killing a Chicken [YouTube]
· All MAD Coverage on Eater [-E-]
· All Alex Atala Coverage on Eater [-E-]