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In the 10 years since his classic Kitchen Confidential first alerted us to the idiosyncrasies and lurking perils of eating out - from Monday fish to the breadbasket conspiracy - much has changed for the subculture of chefs and cooks, for the restaurant business and for Anthony Bourdain. Medium Raw explores those changes, moving 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, and even to fatherhood, Bourdain takes no prisoners as he dissects what he's seen, pausing along the way for a series of confessions, rants, investigations, and interrogations of some of the most controversial figures in food.
Beginning with a secret and highly illegal after-hours gathering of powerful chefs that he compares to a mafia summit, Bourdain pulls back the curtain, but never pulls his punches, on the modern gastronomical revolution, as only he can. Cutting right to the bone, Bourdain sets his sights on some of the biggest names in the foodie world, including David Chang, the young superstar chef who has radicalized the fine-dining landscape; the revered Alice Waters, whom he treats with unapologetic frankness; the Top Chef winners and losers; and many more.
Always he returns to the question "Why cook?" Or the more difficult "Why cook well?" Medium Raw is the deliciously funny and shockingly delectable journey to those answers, sure to delight philistines and gourmands alike.
Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By Sparkly on 10-09-12
I loved Kitchen Confidential, in part because it was the story of a punk rock underdog from Manhattan, a demographic close to my heart and history. Occasionally over the years I have wondered how success and maturity have affected Bourdain, and this book answered most of my questions. Bourdain narrates, which is all important. The chapters on the dissolution of his marriage and his grappling with fame were moving, and quite sad. I found it laudable that he has the ability to admit that he's a jerk and has been wrong about a lot of things. And the section on the fish expert at Le Bernardin is just amazingly good journalism. Yes, he can be a strident, opinionated blowhard, but I think that's part of his charm. His devotion to cooking (and cooks) is infectious.
49 of 49 people found this review helpful
By PKsweets on 07-16-10
I like it......well done!
This is the continuation of Kitchen Confidential...and also a review of sorts of many of the heavy hitters in the food business...from the Restaurants to the TV shows....a insightful background story that is always entertaining and even though it is NSFW, it delivers a great life lesson....you never know where you will end up, and the journey can be so interesting....well done! Great narration and great story....
24 of 24 people found this review helpful