BackEat & Drink » Food Culture » American Chef Anthony Bourdain, Who Introduced Bún Chả to Obama, Passes Away at 61

Anthony Bourdain, the chef, writer and travel show host, has passed away at 61.

CNN, which produces Bourdain's travel show Parts Unknown, reported the tragic passing in the evening of June 8 (Vietnam time). The cause of death was confirmed as suicide. Bourdain was in France filming an episode of his TV program.

Of his death, the network said: "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."

Bourdain gained national attention in the United States in 2000 thanks to his book Kitchen Confidential: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly, which shared stories from his time as a chef at kitchens in New York City, most notably Brasserie Les Halles.

He hosted A Cook's Tour on the Food Network from 2002 to 2003, and then Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations on the Travel Channel from 2005-2012. This show launched Bourdain into international fame, as he traveled the world visiting dozens of countries. Known for his brash, at times vulgar opinions, he also showed curiosity and empathy towards the people he met along the way, a style that endeared him to millions of fans around the world.

Bourdain took particular interest in Vietnam — three episodes of No Reservations were filmed here — and at one point he even considered buying a house near Hoi An. His love for the country is evident in this old video based on one of his first visits.

Anthony Bourdain enjoys a bowl of cơm hến in Hue in an episode of Parts Unknown. Video via YouTube channel CNN.

In 2013, Bourdain moved to CNN and began hosting the Emmy-winning Parts Unknown, a show which focused on lesser-visited locations such as Libya, Congo and Georgia. Vietnam featured prominently yet again, with two episodes shot in the country, including the famous 'Bun Cha Obama' episode filmed during then-US President Barack Obama's visit to Hanoi in 2016.

Tributes to Bourdain have poured in on social media following the announcement of his death. One particularly noteworthy tweet came from Obama himself:

Bourdain is survived by his daughter.

[Photo via Picshype

Related Articles:

- [Video] President Obama and Anthony Bourdain Bond Over Bún Chả in Hanoi

- Anthony Bourdain: First Trip To Vietnam "Was Life-Changing"

- Hanoi's Hot-Tempered 'Bún Chửi' Vendor Featured on Anthony Bourdain's CNN Show

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