Anthony Bourdain’s next cookbook, Appetites, hits shelves in October. After that, perhaps he should consider co-authoring a book on parenting with BFF Barack Obama, because according to a new interview with Esquire, both are full of child-rearing wisdom.
Troubled by the discovery that his daughter had developed a habit of putting (gasp) ketchup on her eggs, Bourdain broached the subject during a recent meal with President Obama in Vietnam. According to Esquire, POTUS replied: "I think you just gotta say, You know what? That's not acceptable." Truth.
The interview is worth a read in its entirety, but here are the choicest quotes from Bourdain — including some more advice on that whole raising kids thing.
On the secrecy of his Hanoi dinner with POTUS: “No one knew he was coming. ... It was a closely held secret at the White House; CNN didn't know, the camera people didn't know, no one knew until the last possible minute.”
On Obama being a pretty chill dude: “The President was very loose, very unconcerned. We didn't receive any briefing or guidance or anything like that from the network or the White House as far as what we'd talk about or what we should or shouldn't do. He really put everyone at ease.”
On his sudden rise to fame in Vietnam that followed that dinner: “I'm not recognized in the street by the Vietnamese, but there were photos in the paper, so I was recognized the following week a lot. They'd see the tattoos on my arms and look at me and say, ‘Mr. Bun cha!’”
On cooking for his wife Ottavia, who’s a purple belt in jiu-jitsu: “You know, she's actually pretty easy — it's like feeding a wolf or Chuck Norris.”
On his daughter’s knife skills: “She is very good, very determined. She likes to make sure that her dice is exactly right. ... Of course, I'm just in mortal terror to see her wielding a big, razor-sharp chef's knife.”
On child-rearing: “The last thing you should ever try to do is to make your child a foodie. Nothing could be more annoying or futile.”