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Raw: We’ll Miss You, Tony

The man responsible for inspiring a generation of chefs to cook and a generation of writers to write has left us.


Shooting an episode of Parts Unknown in France, Anthony Bourdain, culinary raconteur, was found unresponsive Friday morning by fellow Chef and close friend Eric Ripert. CNN host Brian Stelter announced that the cause of death was suicide by hanging.

As all his fans know, Tony had a spotted past, which was well documented in his books. He had his fair share of demons, but was able to rise above them, eventually becoming the legend we all know and love. His no-nonsense approach to food and travel inspired many to ditch the travel guides and seek out new experiences, helping to elevate our collective palates in the process.

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An avid “street meat” aficionado, he encouraged people across the globe to break free from boring chain restaurants and “safe” eateries, instead opting for humble roadside establishments that locals flock to.

An outspoken man in every sense of the word, Bourdain was known for his views on various subjects such as celebrity chefs and veganism; calling culinary living legend Alain Ducasse a “fiend” in his book Medium Raw, and stating on interview how veganism is an affront to many of the cultures he’s come across in his travels.

You inspired me to begin my journey. You did your best through advice, humor, and tough love to guide me on it. And yet you continued to lead through journeys of your own. Everyone will talk of your profound legacy today: TV shows, Books, Films, Comics, Restaurants… I’m just going to think of a mentor and a friend that I’m not going to be able to see again, and it sucks so bad. Wish we could’ve caught that Yankee game we talked about. I guess I wish a lot of things right now. Mostly, I’m just sad you’re gone & sad you were hurting so badly, my brother. Rest easy, you’ve more than earned it. With love, gratitude & utmost respect always, Tony. I’ll never stop working hard to live up to the standard you set.

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I picked up Kitchen Confidential 15 years ago, as an aimless youth washing pots and pans. I didn’t really get much of it at first, initially grabbing it just because the book had a familiar name printed on it, but as the years went on, the things Bourdain described between the pages started to make more and more sense.

His writing style felt as if he were right in front of me, the same way a parent or grandparent would recount stories of their youth. Tony always made sure to paint a vivid picture, leaving little for the imagination, and making the reader feel as if they were there. I didn’t know it then, but this would end up laying the foundations of who I was as a writer. I actually interviewed for this job with a copy of Medium Raw in my bag, something that would come in handy, since I found myself re-reading Tony’s books as a “guide to food writing.”

On behalf of chefs, writers, and other culinary misfits, we’ll miss you Tony.

About the author

Tim Muñoz

Just when I thought I was out of the kitchen...They pulled me back in

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