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Chef, author and TV host Anthony Bourdain has died at 61

In a shocking, tragic piece of news, chef and TV personality Anthony Bourdain has died at the age of 61. CNN confirmed that Bourdain was found dead in his hotel room by a friend while filming an episode of his acclaimed show PARTS UNKNOWN in France. The cause of death has been ruled a suicide.

CNN put out a statement saying, "It is with extraordinary sadness we can confirm the death of our friend and colleague, Anthony Bourdain. His love of great adventure, new friends, fine food and drink and the remarkable stories of the world made him a unique storyteller. His talents never ceased to amaze us and we will miss him very much. Our thoughts and prayers are with his daughter and family at this incredibly difficult time."

Born in 1956 in New York City, Bourdain’s love of food started when his family traveled to France and he tasted a fresh oyster on a fisherman’s boat. He would then go on to attend Vassar college (eventually dropping out), and then the Culinary Institute of America, graduating in 1978. He worked in the restaurant industry for years, including as the executive chef at Brasserie Les Halles.

At the start of the millennium, Bourdain achieved international renown when he released the book “Kitchen Confidential: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly” which took readers behind the scenes of how the industry works, as well as his own life. In the book, he peeled back the curtain and detailed the dynamic of the kitchen, breaking down how it all works and living for the bold, frustrating, exciting, and sometimes alcohol and drug-fueled environment. 

This soon led Bourdain to host his own show, A COOK'S TOUR from 2002-2003, all before starting the critically acclaimed show, NO RESERVATIONS. This ran from 2005-2012 (winning two Emmys), with Bourdain also doing THE LAYOVER from 2011-2013, and most recently, PARTS UNKNOWN since 2013. His shows were acclaimed for mixing journalism with the travel and food show genre, enriching our minds and our bellies. He won a Peabody Award in 2013 for PARTS UNKNOWN.

Recently Bourdain became very involved in the #MeToo and #Timesup movements after girlfriend Asia Argento revealed she had been raped by Harvey Weinstein. Argento gave a speech at Cannes Film Festival this year, and Bourdain spoke about it to IndieWire, saying, "I was so proud of her. It was absolutely fearless to walk right into the lion’s den and say what she said, the way she said it. It was an incredibly powerful moment, I thought. I am honored to know someone who has the strength and fearlessness to do something like that.”

Celebrities have come out to share fond memories and give their condolences, including Gordon Ramsey, Paul Feig, Rose McGowan, Neil deGrasse Tyson and more.

reposted: @questlovesfood Just saw the news this morning about Anthony Bourdain’s passing. I have so many thoughts about him—memories, emotions, and unanswered questions—that right now it’s sort of a jumble. I feel so thankful for him to introducing me to a world I never knew, the world of food and especially food around the world. It was through Anthony that I learned about the sushi master Jiro Ono was and that recommendation (seeing the Jiro doc & making a pilgrimage to Tokyo by any means necessary) singlehandedly changed the course of my professional and creative life. Anthony also believed, and talked often, about how all forms of creativity were connected: how chefs and drummers and comedians and actors and directors and painters all drew on the same well of thoughts and emotions. That feeling stuck with me. Watching him take trips to faraway lands to get a taste of heaven (and, just as often, to show how life on earth can be hell for people under the thumb of cruel governments or oppressive poverty) was the equivalent of my many trips to obscure record shops continents away. Lastly I’ll miss our endless banter about the merits (or lack therof) of Yacht Rock. Anthony came on Fallon often, and every time he liked to warn me that his walk-on music better have “some umph to it.” He wanted power and attitude. I’d agree with him, and then I’d play another Billy Joel song, which infuriated him. A few years back, to thank him for writing the foreword to my book, I started the ultimate troll project, though I never got to give it to him. We had an “argument” over Herb Alpert’s “Route 101”: I made the case that the song’s good-feeling/good-time vibe couldn’t be denied, and he made the case that he denied it, and the more heated the argument got the more we laughed. I told him imma make him the mother of smooth-pop playlists and then he would see the light. I’m finishing that playlist, and when I do, I’ll name it after him, just so I can imagine that laugh of his.

A post shared by Questlove Gomez (@questlove) on Jun 8, 2018 at 5:56am PDT

Bourdain was a gifted and passionate man who expanded our minds when it came to food, culture and, in essence, the world. I have a copy of "Kitchen Confidential" on my shelf, and I will enjoy the insightful, funny, and in-depth writing for years to come. If you or anyone you know is struggling with depression, or just needs to talk to someone, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255.

Source: CNN

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