Sunday, May 21, 2006

Book Review: Kitchen Confidential

A good friend of mine, one whom I frequently quote, once sent me an email about a food writer she’d recently discovered. After she (verbosely) proclaimed her love of his writing style, she concluded her email with the statement, “I don’t know if I want to sleep with him or be him.”

That’s an interesting observation.

Do we as women actively chase after unattractive men, only to later discover that they’re well-spoken, well-traveled and well-versed in Italian wines? Doubtful. Or, and much more likely, do we meet that same man and slowly start to find him attractive as we learn more about the quality of his character? While I’m sure many women would disagree with me, those true to themselves will acknowledge that they have dated a man (or ten) that mentally stimulated them even if he didn’t quite ignite the fires within her loin.

That’s kind of the case here. I just finished (2 weeks ahead of schedule!) Anthony Bourdain’s Kitchen Confidential. And while I am fairly certain that I don’t want to sleep with a married man twenty-five years my senior with a history of promiscuity and drug abuse, Bourdain’s single-minded pursuit of pleasure is deliciously sexy. I am, officially, his food whore.

The book is really an insider’s guide to the restaurant scene, with a horrifying look into NYC kitchen and waitstaff antics. Already, you have my interest. Nasty knife wounds, food mishandling, sex in the pantry – I’m turned on, and I’m not kidding. It’s a cross between conventional one hand reading and the type bookish foodies are more likely to partake of.

His approach is brash, superior. His analysis of Central American line cooks is particularly offensive. He’s well-traveled, speaks French and Spanish and hideously arrogant. It’s unbelievably attractive. Maybe good girls will always like bad boys. Regardless, read this book and you’ll never order “tonight’s special” again.


Lindsay G. said...

I love this guy! Check out his travel/food show-No reservations- on the Travel Channel! He is arrogant as hell and a pain the ass, but so intriguing!

briana said...

“I don’t know if I want to sleep with him or be him.”

With certain people and certain days (and by days, I mean today) this is just a strange but true fact of life.

Ulla said...

His show is great! And I have been living in NYC for so long I do not see any arrogance just charm! I must be a lost cause! Like your blog!

christianne said...

Thanks, Ulla! I like yours too -- looking forward to making one of your brussel sprout recipes very soon!