boosterseat26, January 1, 2011 (view all comments by boosterseat26)
As with all of Anthony Bourdain's books, Medium Raw shows an interesting look at life in the food industry. There are points where it drags, but mostly the book is entertaining and witty.
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bhart927, October 17, 2010 (view all comments by bhart927)
When I read Anthony Bourdain's "Medium Raw: A Bloody Vanentine to the World of Food and the People Who Cook," I am transported to a small, slightly seedy pub in New York. It is as if this stranger, Anthony Bourdain is sitting next to me at the bar drinking his fourth vodka on the rocks. He is slightly tipsy, and in need of confessing his decade of insights. I listen, and he spills his guts.
In his remarkable autobiographical, confessional style, Anthony Bourdain begins in an illegal feast of endangered animals, wondering why he has been invited to this feed where the top chefs from the country are huddled under a cloth to devour a tiny bird, head, feet, and all. I read on, he is upset, truly believes he is not worth shit in the kitchen compared to these honored few at the table.
I am there, with him, encouraging him to open up, get it off his chest. He continues to confide in me, the reader, using his acerbic vocabulary and desire to reveal his past sins and observations of the culinary world around him. Along the way, I realize that here is a man who has matured, perhaps because his is now a loving father, and understand that, for Anthony Bourdain, it is imperative for him to share his revised insights with the world.
After" Kitchen Confidential," Bourdain became an international culinary celebrity, the result of this celebrity was his television series on world cultures. In "Medium Raw: A Bloody Valentine to the World of Food and the People Who Cook," Bourdain revises some of his comments on celebrity that he abhorred and now finds himself in. It is imperative that we, the reader, know he is having second thoughts on his original observations.
The reason I love reading Anthony Bourdain, is that he writes beautifully in the first person, moving from four-letter expletives to thoughtfully descriptive adjectives. As the reader am right there as he shares his insights on his transformation from unknown to infamous. He desperately needs to confessor, and has chosen me.
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cutie_sweets2002, May 28, 2010 (view all comments by cutie_sweets2002)
This is book is bloody brilliant!! In a time where media food stars seem to paste on a plastic grin, Bourdain's writing style is frank and refreshing. A must read if you consider yourself a foodie, or are at all interested in Bourdain.
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In Medium Raw, Bourdain expounds on food topics far and wide, with the self-deprecating and biting honesty that fans have come to love. His description of an encounter with Food Network's Sandra Lee is both hilarious and deeply scary.
by Tracey T.
by Wall Street Journal,
“The food orbit is [Bourdain’s] element, and chapters on today’s leading figures — from chef David Chang to critic Alan Richman — display his access, outspokenness and comedic gifts.”
by Time Magazine,
“The Kitchen Confidential author is a father now, but he hasn’t cleaned up his language, lost his zesty appetite or his critical zing.”
“Bourdain is back with more intriguing food fights, moving further from the kitchen into the eating industry. [Bourdain’s] dissections...are still as hilarious, as scatological and as spot-on as ever....his fare — and his prose — is still quite spicy.”
by Denver Post,
“Full of things everybody in the food world thinks but nobody will say...If [Bourdain’s] sharp eye and his wicked tongue have brought him acclaim, what’s kept him in the spotlight is his heart. Like Oscar Wilde, he’s a moralist in the guise of a libertine. Long may he prosper.”
by Wall Street Journal,
“Mr. Bourdain is a vivid, bawdy and often foul-mouthed writer. He thrills in the attack, but he is also an enthusiast who writes well about things he holds dear.”
by Austin American-Statesman,
“Like a stinky fish sauce from his beloved Vietnam, [Bourdain’s] appeal among the food die-hards has only grown stronger and more pungent over time, and this book will only solidify that adoration.”
by New York Times Book Review,
“Bourdain has insight, access and good taste, and he’s a naturally engaging writer...Bourdain is a hopeless romantic when it comes to food and the people who cook. The subtitle’s real valentines are two elegantly written profiles.”
This long-awaited follow-up to Kitchen Confidential contains the confessions, rants, investigations, and interrogations of some of the more controversial figures in food. Bourdain tracks his own unexpected voyage from journeyman cook to celebrity chef and globe-traveling professional eater and drinker.
A lot has changed since Kitchen Confidential. For the subculture of chefs and cooks, for the restaurant business as a whole — and for Anthony Bourdain. Medium Raw explores those changes, taking the reader back and forth — from the author's bad old days — to the present. Tracking his own strange and unexpected voyage from journeyman cook to globe traveling professional eater and drinker, Bourdain compares and contrasts what he's seen and what he's seeing, pausing along the way for a series of confessions, rants, investigations, and interrogations of some of the more controversial figures in food. Always returning to the question: "Why cook?" Or, the harder to answer: "Why cook well?"
Beginning with a secret and highly illegal after-hours gathering of powerful chefs he compares to a Mafia summit, the story follows the twists and eddies through subjects ranging from:
"The Friends of David Chang," an incredibly undiplomatic discussion with (and peek into the mind of) the hottest, most influential chef in America.
"Don't Ask Alice": Alice Waters. Good...or Evil?
The Big Shake Out: The restaurant business in post economic meltdown America. How it's changing. How it might change even more.
And, Heroes and Villains. (With a few returning favorites.)
The author of "Kitchen Confidential" explores how his life and the cooking world have changed since his last book, offering up candid assessments of such figures as David Chang, Alice Waters, and the "Top Chef" winners and losers.
Powell's City of Books is an independent bookstore in Portland, Oregon, that fills a whole city block with more than a million new, used, and out of print books. Shop those shelves — plus literally millions more books, DVDs, and gifts — here at Powells.com.