Anthony Bourdain and José Andrés just can't keep their names out of headlines lately. Besides Bourdain's perennially popular CNN series Parts Unknown, he also recently made a cameo in the big Hollywood film Big Short (and had a bit of a feud with Donkey Sauce slinger Guy Fieri); meanwhile, Andrés has got a hot fast-casual restaurant chain called Beefsteak that's drawing big-name investors such as Gwyneth Paltrow, and has been embroiled in a much-publicized legal battle with Donald Trump.
And yet, somehow the two have found time to sneak away to a fancy Ritz-Carlton resort in Puerto Rico for the inaugural edition of the José Andrés & Friends Culinary Getaway, where they spoke to Miami's Ocean Drive magazine about everything from undocumented immigrants in the restaurant industry to what the hell happened to Rocco DiSpirito.
Below, a brief roundup of the best tidbits from the recent interview:
Bourdain on racism in the restaurant industry: "In an industry that’s always been open to everybody, notoriously so—every refugee and fugitive, dysfunctional character in the world could always find a home in a restaurant—why aren’t there more African-American chefs and African-American cooks represented in the mid- to high-range restaurants?"
Andrés on the biggest food breakthrough during his lifetime: "Obviously El Bulli."
Bourdain on the biggest food breakthrough during his lifetime: "When Americans started eating sushi and decided sometime in the ’70s that raw fish was desirable, that was a big, big win."
Bourdain on chef Rocco DiSpirito's fall from grace: "He was surprisingly good; now he’ll be a professional wrestler in five years."
Andrés on the biggest problem in the restaurant industry right now: "Out of 11 million undocumented people in this country, 2 to 3 million—the people taking care of the farms, doing distribution, cooking, washing dishes, running kitchens—are in the food industry directly, yet we don’t want to recognize they belong to the system."
Bourdain on the biggest food movement of the next 20 years: "McDonald’s sales are eroding, and more people like José are entering the marketplace looking to create fast, affordable food that’s actually good for you."
Andrés on what's wrong with Miami's restaurant scene: "Miami is a city that is still trying to find itself. ... I’m missing more of the Latin; Miami should be a Latin town."
Bourdain on the biggest threat to the restaurant industry right now: "... this glut of kids coming out of culinary school who want to be chefs immediately [and] on Top Chef and get a reality-TV show without putting in the time in the system that we all came up in, which is you clean squid for a few years and you start at the bottom."
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