Saigoneer

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


Related Articles

in Food Culture

'Trendy' Elephant Poop Coffee Taking off in Vietnam

Vietnam is known for its cafe chồn, coffee beans that are ingested, pooped out by weasels and sold at prices far higher than the normal variety. Now, a Vietnamese breeder is adopting a similar techniq...

in Food Culture

20 Vietnamese Foods You Need to Try Now

Uyen Luu, author of My Vietnamese Kitchen and contributor to Jamie Oliver’s FoodTube, shares her favorite Vietnamese dishes and how to cook them.

in Food Culture

5 Of Saigon’s Best Markets

When people think of Saigon, the iconic Bến Thành Market usually comes to mind. But while it’s rich in history, for locals, it’s little more than a tourist attraction. Vietnam Coracle recently took to...

in Food Culture

7 Of Vietnam’s Most Expensive Traditional Dishes

As Vietnam’s cities develop, there are plenty of restaurants that offer up dishes at international (read: expensive) prices. While Vietnamese food is generally considered cheap, there are a few notabl...

in Food Culture

A Chat With The Organizers Of The Outcast’s Farmers Market

Saigon’s only farmers market is gearing up for its second installment at Saigon Outcast this Sunday. We sat down with the organizers (Saigon Outcast and La Holista) to see why they started the market,...

in Food Culture

A Cozy Abode of Bak Kut Teh and Migrant Teochew Gastronomy in the Heart of Saigon

Singaporean Teochew bak kut teh is a seemingly simple broth made with pork ribs that has managed to enamor locals and foreigners for decades.

Partner Content