Kitchen Confidential by Anthony Bourdain

I’ve been hearing about Anthony Bourdain’s book Kitchen Confidential since it was published back in 2000. At the time, I was working in a high-profile restaurant in Washington, D.C. whose chef and owner is cited in the book. Somehow I never got around to picking it up until recently, after having watched more than my fair share of cooking programs on the Food Network and catching up on some other food memoirs I’ve missed throughout the years (check out my review of Toast: the Story of a Boy’s Hunger by Nigel Slater from earlier this year.)

Not only does Bourdain share some handy tips to keep in mind when eating out (never order fish on a Monday, eat out Tuesdays through Thursdays for the best food and service, steer clear of Sunday brunches, etc.) but he delivers stories about the restaurant industry in a sometimes shocking and always hysterical style.  Bourdain worked himself up from lowly dishwasher more interested in his next drug score than in the food he was wiping from the plates to becoming executive chef at Brasserie Les Halles in New York City. This book chronicles his years of work at dead end jobs, under horrible head chefs, and in the world of vice that often surrounds professional kitchens.

Although Kitchen Confidential is his first, Bourdain has written other food memoirs including  No Reservations: Around the World on an Empty Stomach (the premise of which was turned into a show on the Travel Channel with Bourdain as host) and Medium Raw: a Bloody Valentine to the World of Food and the People Who Cook. Bourdain has also written some culinary murder mysteries that I’m looking forward to checking out – start with Bone in the Throat.

Find and reserve this book in our catalog.


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