48 Wonderful responses to “Bourdain: Blogging for Travel Channel…”

  • TheApostateChef

    Bourdain? On the Food Channel?


    Oh god… my side is aching from the laughter…

    *sniff* (wipes away tears)…

    Tuschman really needs to look up “irony” in the dictionary before making these kinds of decisions.

  • alboozy

    I’ve seen all the ACT episodes except the French Laundry one……now I have my chance


  • bob mcgee

    Did Kruschev promote industry raised gross filthy living in their own crap hogs as well, thought that was only Paula…. Anyway I will be sorry to miss the replays of chefs tour, as I can’t stand the risk of seeing another Smithfield ad. Tony, you, at your most novice, taught more than most that TFN, has presented. Don’t get me wrong….I still think The next food network star is very culturally relevant to society on every level………..bob m

  • Maya

    The Food Network has had a few flashes of brilliance, though – airing Giada and Nigella luring in the over 40 male who makes his girlfriend happy by watching FN while enjoying the scenery, if you know what I mean. They should stick to what they know.

    Meanwhile I’ll keep watching Travel, wishing Lonely Planet had its original Justine back.

  • doodad

    What a hoot Tony. I, for one, am glad for the episodes as it means I don’t have to watch many of the aforementioned “stars.” I still want to know what happened to the fireglo Rickenbacker on the Fieri set. Someone’s Christmas or Hannukah present perhaps? Damn.

    Sad that Alton Brown has re-upped according to the local fish wrapper. I thought for sure he would flee given his trained monkey dancing they have him doing lately. I guess the payday is good and can understand that at least.

  • Christa Seychew

    FN needs to decide if they’re after “foodies” or homemakers. Their recent programming choices seem to reflect the latter.

    Every chef and restaurant person that I know finds the programming to be built for the Desperate Housewives set. The recipes get simpler and so do the hosts. It’s not about cooking at all, it’s about merchandising.

    The only shows that have anything to offer people that know anything about food is Iron Chef and Good Eats. Mr. Bourdain’s Cook’s Tour program recalls a time when the network was willing to take risks.

    As Americans become more excited about food, and hard to find ingredients and semi-difficult techniques become commonplace, you would think that FN would be trying to capture that interest instead of pandering.

  • Rachael

    FINALLY. I kept seeing the previews for this and thinking “I can’t be the only one who is stunned by this!”

    It’s clearly a desperate attempt to bring in new viewers and cash in on No Reservations. I wondered when it was coming; after that awful Have Fork Will Travel I knew it was only a matter of time before they tried to claw their way back to Bourdain.

    Isn’t it hilarious that, after getting rid of Emeril and claiming they want to go in a “new” direction, the best they can muster is a relic from a guy who wants nothing to do with the network?

    I hope it really does help Bourdain’s book sales at least.

  • JoP in Omaha

    FN is trying to “figure out” where they’re going? How odd that they don’t know–have they really dumped shows and personalities without knowing what’s next? I don’t get it. But I guess that means that maybe, just maybe, they’ll decide to put more real cooking back on the the air. We can only hope.

  • Shannon

    I saw “A Cook’s Tour” listed last weekend and mentioned to my husband that I was surprised the FN was showing reruns. I thought they hated Tony.

    I wonder why the turnaround.

  • Nic Heckett

    Note Comedy Central are re-running “Chapelle’s Show” despite the highly public breakup. Just trying to squeeze a few extra $ out of their ‘used show’ drawer. Tony is getting residuals I hope, so what harm?

  • lux

    *puts MBA hat on*

    FN is, well, F-ed. Trying to go lowbrow / mainstream makes sense given the demographics but in reality, the middle-class ladies who would most benefit from shows that help them become better cooks are so busy working and raising their kids that they just don’t watch all that much TV. And if they do, it’s probably not Food Network. Not that they wouldn’t watch the stuff, it’s just not high enough on their already overburdened to-do list.

    Aspirational cooks / foodies are the ones who will make the time to watch lots of food-related programming – IF it’s good enough. It’s a smaller market segment but more dedicated and more willing to spend our money with their advertisers. Problem is that networks always want to go for the biggest audience numbers possible. Playing the niche simply isn’t as appealing a proposition.

    If Food Network played their cards right and retooled their operations around being THE source for truly high-quality food information (in all formats – video, web, print, etc) they could create an amazing empire. For example, can you imagine annual Food Network awards that instead of being some insipid paean to their advertisers, were actually an honor that chefs fought to be a part of? Wouldn’t that be something?

    They have the reach already. They just don’t have the vision or the guts.

  • Phil

    Well, it’s a gift to any fan of the show who owns a DVD Recorder. Since FN will more than likely NEVER release this series (opting to market season after season of Boy Meets Grill instead), this would be your chance to add this series to your collection.

  • kanani

    These marathons are sick. All of the networks are fallen to this. There was even an Austin Powers marathon that was more entertaining (whilst bedridden with a bad cold) that watching those FN Holiday Party repeats that are so chipper you just want to scream. And truly… can there be no bigger kiss of death than having to appear on a Holiday Show? Poor Emeril. He just looked like he wanted to go fish in Hawaii.

    But back to Austin Powers….Yeah, baby. Show some creativity. Throw those network execs to Dr. Evil. That they can’t figure out what to do with Emeril or claim to have created Rachel Ray shows they’re delusional.

  • Troll

    Wow, Bourdain wrote a LONG boring piece without even mentioning Rocco DiSpirito! Maybe he’s finally over that twisted unrequitted man-crush he has on Rocco.

  • SorchaR

    Does this mean he won’t be hanging around here anymore? That’s kind of a sad thought. On the other hand, now you can go comment in *his* blog now and then.

  • cathelou

    I was fascinated to see that on my most recent airline flight the FN promos for the show declared Bourdain was part of a “macho lineup” with the Ace of Cakes and Throwdown with Bobby Flay. It was called something like “Testoterone Tuesday”–actually, I think that may have been the actual name.

    So much for appealing to the Desperate Housewives. Oh wait . . . .

    (semi-cross-posted on Bourdain’s blog)

  • Maya

    LOL Testosterone Tuesday. They’d be missing the Dinner Impossible guy. It is quite an odd combo, isn’t it? According to Bourdain’s book real female chefs are less like Giada and more like some of the most foul-mouthed cheftestants on reality cooking shows. So where are they on Food Network? Do American housewives have more Neilsen chips on average? 😉

  • Gabrielle

    It’s rough when “the talent” ages on camera, but then again, a little gray makes a man seem more “distinguished”. Yeah, that’s it, Tony is just more distinguished now.

    I like being able to see “A Cook’s Tour” again. Can’t beat that Portuguese pig slaughter, you know.

  • parkbench

    I missed ACT in the day, but *totally* recognized the rock n roll h/motel just on the edge of SF’ sTenderloin district so well described in the French Laundry chapter of the book.

    In fact, it’s the only place I stay on the “city” side of the Bay when I’m there. Divey in a way only a joint that caters to the itinerant musician (or, apparently, chef) can be and yet…comfortable.

    I missed the piped-in jungle sounds in the courtyard when I was there in October but the poolside coffee/pastry breakfast is just fine. AND within easy walking distance of Traci Des Jardin’s joint, Jardiniere. Swan Oyster Depot is an easy walk, too — I was able to lug a very drunken Mr. Parkbench back to the Phoenix after a few too many glasses of chardonnay too early in the day. Damn, I love that ‘hood.

    Thanks to FN for bringing back the Cook’s Tour eps I missed before I had cable.

    Beyond that, MEH.


  • Frances Davey

    I have to admire a person who can use the word “clusterfuck” in a sentence without it in any way appearing to be gratuitous.

  • Techie

    What are your thoughts on Robert Irvine? I really enjoyed his book that came out recently.

  • sheila

    I have to say I am delighted that we get to see ACT. As I was still in Ireland the first time it was aired, and I just bought The French Laundry cookbook, I can’t say how much I look forward to this episode. Stop whining Tony, don’t you care that your fans are happy?

  • Wilmita

    I suppose The Food Network is trying to squeeze all the juice out of every dollar, (until the eagle grins), of the rights they own to “A Cook’s Tour” before they expire in June 2008.
    I hope Bourdain gets them afterward.

    In defense of Bourdain, I couldn’t fathom what it must be like as he said to be shown, “my younger, thinner, darker-haired self”, to millions of people by a company he dislikes whose very name belies their disrespect for the art and craft of being a chef.

    Their making more money off it to boot is them just being “LOUD with it.”

    They must feel they’re having the last laugh.

    I have a feeling Mr. Bourdain is not through yet.


  • just another sous chef

    this is a comment for tony, since his Travel Channel handlers won’t post my original comment.


    you should be happy that Food Network is re-airing A Cook’s Tour. Pound-for-pound, it is a superior show to No Reservations largely since it is focused on cooking (and eating).

    really, i am sure your production crew is talented, but if i see my favorite celebuchef on another horse or god forbid, in another waterfall while they play with their video toaster, i will personally start a petition to have you publicly skullfucked.

    and before you go off on the ‘Have Fork’ asshat, maybe you’d like to comment on the fabulous two-hour epic with the weird foods guy? talk about shilling….

    back to the original item–the book A Cook’s Tour is also far superior to the crappy scrapbook that will actually get an ISBN number which resulted in the book for No Reservations. Couldn’t you have at least insisted on high quality paper?

    count your blessings, douchebag.


    just another sous chef

    ps. a myspace page? holy fucking christ…

  • bb

    That is f*cking hilarious commentary by AB. Oh wait, it’s Bourdain. I meant fucking hilarious! “People will surely comment on the striking – even horrifying – decline in my appearance since those few years ago.” Crazy!
    Thanks for sharing, Michael…VERY strong!!

  • artnlit

    It’s simple – it was a blatant attempt by the FN to cash in on Tony’s success. In other words, they finally realize that No Reservations is a great show and Tony is a great host. (Note I say great, not perfect, and perhaps that is also why we like it?) They are still nursing their wounds from his departure. I don’t think it is a bad thing, however, that they reran the series. It gave those of us who never saw A Cook’s Tour something to compare NR to, and the development of Tony and the show is obvious. Either way, Tony, you still WIN.
    Cheers, artnlit (Bonnie)

  • artnlit

    PS. The “decline in [your] appearance”, Tony?? Well thank god you stopped wearing those cut-off sleeve, Cletus rednceck checkered shirts! Now THAT is scary!

  • Troll

    Best comment at Bourdain’s blog besides mine:

    “Why am I suddenly reminded that Marilyn Manson appeared on the Muppet Show”?

  • Merxx's Birthday

    Maybe Scripps is using ACT as a guinea pig.

    Depending on the ratings that result from the reprise of ACT, Scripps could use that data as a reason to change the Food Network’s current suckluster appeal and improve the legitamacy of the FN shows in development.

    If they have any good business sense, they certinaly should do it now, while they have rights to ACT.

    Scripps actually has a legal duty to operate in the best interests of shareholders, so if Scripps finds out via hot ACT ratings that making more FN shows similar to or in the spirit of ACT brings in more viewers and money, Scripps better go in that direction . . . or else be in breach of that legal duty.

    And Scripps does not want that.

    ACT might save the Food Network from going ALL the way down the dumper. I’d love to see more FN show’s like ACT, even if it is only 30 minutes! It’s what hooked me on the FN in the first place.

  • Claudia

    Ummmm . . . (a) maybe, realizing their rights to A Cook’s Tour expires in June, FN wants to air the crap out of the show while they still have it, and (b) they are doing it because, although you’re about as welcome at FN as a leper in Club Med jacuzzi, they realize (painfully) that you are a hot commodity (TV-wise), and your Q factor are off the charts . . . . soooooo . . . they are naturally going to try to squeeze whatever ratings spikes they can get out of your “Q” factor with whatever material they have on hand – i.e., A Cook’s Tour? Because, you sure as hell won’t be shooting anything for them any time soon, right?

    No TV network is going to use up a prime time slot (8-11) just to “va fangool” a maverick ex-talent. Oh, no. There’s money involved here. At it’s embedded in your ratings and recognition factor. Just thinking out loud here . . .

    PS: Just Anothyer Sous Chef –

    The MySpace home page is NOT Tony’s. It was put up by a fan, and AB has nothing to do with it. The individual has been asked a few times to reconfigure it so it’s a FanPage, not a Myspace page looking like it came from Tony or any of his “people”. Since she won’t take it down, it’s just been disavowed (and largely ignored).

  • Claudia

    Man, I need to slow down with the typing already – “in A Club Med jacuzzi,” “AND it’s embedded. . .”, “Just ANOTHER Sous . . .” Acccchhh. Apologies. Yeah, I really DO speak English . . .

  • Tammi

    I posted this over at No Reservations but don’t think it will get past their censors. Please don’t get me wrong, I love Tony’s writing and understand that he is going to inevitably push some buttons or offend somebody, my intent is to educate not castigate.

    “I hate to do this but I feel compelled. I have a son with Tourrette’s and feel the need to point out that only ONE percent of all people with Tourrette’s have Cropalalia (shout out obscenities). While I understand the need for metaphors and humor in writing, I also get tired of the media portraying everybody with Tourrette’s as witless moron’s shouting “crack wh*&re” at hapless passerby’s on the street. It’s just not the norm for people with Tourrette’s. Thank you for giving me a chance to educate. I must say I am THRILLED to finally be seeing new episode’s of No Reservations as is my poor husband who has to see me morph into a whining gelatic mass everytime I tune in and see that we are enjoying another re-run.”

    In response to his sentence ” found the last of a staggering series of Tourettes-like diplomatic blunders when..”

  • Andrew

    The only disagreement I have with him is over Zane Lamprey. If you’ve seen Zane’s other show (on the Mojo Network), he travels around the world and gets drunk with the locals. It’s entertaining and you actually do learn a bit about local drinking customs. It appears that the Food Network either just bought out takes from that show, or had him go to a few restaurants when he was on location, because all of the places he’d already visited on the other show. Cheap way for FN to get another show. I can’t blame Zane for doing it though.

  • SwillMonkey

    The FN lost its way a long time ago. Guy Fieri is a classic example and AB nailed it in his Itchy & Scratchy analogy. You wonder what the turnover rate is in the programming department. I can’t wait for the 2008 FM XMass special with Paula Deen and Guy Fieri baking Xmass cookie together.

  • SwillMonkey

    Speaking of AB, who else caught the look on his face in tonight’s NR show when he quoted Homer Simpson to the group of old men eating pork? It was classic, like he just got away with toilet papering a neighbor’s tree. Should be a great season!

  • Shelley

    Posting my comment here that was similar to my remark on AB’s blog: Is anyone but me astounded that Tony didn’t know about the Cook’s Tour marathon on FN until Ruhlman sent him an alert???

    SwillMonkey: The Homer quote tonight was indeed priceless. 🙂

  • lalagirl

    I thought it was just me that was becoming disenchanted with FN. I noticed that years ago, I used to find tons of worthwhile shows. Now, Im only into 1 or 2. Rachael Ray sickens me. And what about that Sandra Lee- “Today’s episode: fresh salsa. Step one: Open jar” Come on! And as much as it is nice to think that since cooking is becoming so popular now anyone can have a show, that does not mean that anyone should have a show. Im tired of back door Nancy’s thinking they deserve attention with their favorite Bisquick recipes. The new “stars” are pretty boring! Boy- after a re-read this comes off as much more annoyed that I am, but Im sure others agree. I recently discovered a bunch of new shows on WHYY that are filling the gap nicely.

  • Kina

    turd in the fn punchbowl indeed! but that is one hot, gray-haired, macho, trash-talkin’ turd! i’ll watch it because i remember they were pretty good shows and well….tony or sandra lee…uh, yeah.

    rachael vs, samantha? samantha would drop kick rachael’s ass. unless of course, rachael dropped some 25 lbs and started exercising and quit the butts! last i saw samantha was blowing on some austrian guys horn. not kidding. i don’t see rach doing that on tv at least.

  • luis

    Anthony congrats on the new show in the Travel Channel. Hope I am not going premature lest you revert back to eating buffalo colons or something… Particularly I watched tonite’s show of “NO RESERVATIONS” on Travel Channel.
    I like it very much because of all the beautiful food you showcased and the travel/interest/historic commentary. I like it very much. Travel channel is loading it up with comercials so much so that I will look around Costco and the net for the CD/DVD version sans the comercials. Good job, I am glad you are producing such a great show.
    The world is filled with wonderful food and beautiful restaurants. The Turkish section of Berlin restaurant you went in made my mouth water. Man I wanted a piece of that. YOu could post a recipe of that Turkish fast food thing wrapped in a ??..flour tortilla it seemed. It looked so beautiful and healthy I would love to make it myself. If had a dvd of it … but then the seasoning and sauce???…
    Ok.. good job.

  • Dave

    Ok Bourdain, I’m a fan, I’m a faithful adherent to your point of view. I find you more or less the only tolerable food/travel guru I can watch on TV. But why, when you went to Vancouver BC did you trek 70 miles north to Whistler and ignore the Granville Island food market? There has to be a story at the market somewhere, like the Oyama sausage people? Anyway, wife and I (who spent our honeymoon in Vancouver!) were very disappointed that you skipped it. Not that you should care ; )

    PS the rain at Whistler was your punishment! (keep up the good work, its good for people like me who believe food is culture).