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A Cook's Tour: In Search of the Perfect Meal Hardcover – December 7, 2001
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Dodging minefields in Cambodia, diving into the icy waters outside a Russian bath, Chef Bourdain travels the world over in search of the ultimate meal.
The only thing Anthony Bourdain loves as much as cooking is traveling, and A Cook's Tour is the shotgun marriage of his two greatest passions. Inspired by the question, 'What would be the perfect meal?', Anthony sets out on a quest for his culinary holy grail.
Our adventurous chef starts out in Japan, where he eats traditional Fugu, a poisonous blowfish which can be prepared only by specially licensed chefs. He then travels to Cambodia, up the mine-studded road to Pailin into autonomous Khmer Rouge territory and to Phnom Penh's Gun Club, where local fare is served up alongside a menu of available firearms. In Saigon, he's treated to a sustaining meal of live Cobra heart before moving on to savor a snack with the Viet Cong in the Mecong Delta. Further west, Kitchen Confidential fans will recognize the Gironde of Tony's youth, the first stop on his European itinerary. And from France, it's on to Portugal, where an entire village has been fattening a pig for months in anticipation of his arrival. And we're only halfway around the globe. . .
A Cook's Tour recounts, in Bourdain's inimitable style, the adventures and misadventures of America's favorite chef.
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The idea of "perfect meal" in this context is to be taken to mean not necessarily the most upscale, chi-chi, three-star dining experience, but the ideal combination of food, atmosphere, and company. This would take in fishing villages in Vietnam, bars in Cambodia, and Tuareg camps in Morocco (roasted sheep's testicle, as it happens); it would stretch to smoked fish and sauna in the frozen Russian countryside and the French Laundry in California's Napa Valley. It would mean exquisitely refined kaiseki rituals in Japan after yakitori with drunken salarymen. Deep-fried Mars Bars in Glasgow and Gordon Ramsay in London. The still-beating heart of a cobra in Saigon. Drink. Danger. Guns. All with a TV crew in tow for the accompanying series--22 episodes of video gold, we are assured, featuring many don't-try-this-at-home shots of the author in gastric distress or crawling into yet another storm drain at four in the morning.
You are unlikely to lay your hands on a more hectically, strenuously entertaining book for some time. Our hero eats and swashbuckles round the globe with perfect-pitch attitude and liberal use of judiciously placed profanities. Bourdain can write. His timing is great. He is very funny and is under no illusions whatsoever about himself or anyone else. But most of all, he is a chef who got himself out of his kitchen and found, all over the world, people who understand that eating well is the foundation of harmonious living. --Robin Davidson, Amazon.co.uk
About the Author
- Publisher : Bloomsbury USA; 1st edition (December 7, 2001)
- Language : English
- Hardcover : 288 pages
- ISBN-10 : 1582341400
- ISBN-13 : 978-1582341408
- Item Weight : 1.29 pounds
- Dimensions : 6.33 x 1.06 x 9.34 inches
- Best Sellers Rank: #215,096 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
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In this book he travels to many places in the world and experiences their food and drink first hand. Most of the destinations are in Asia; Vietnam, Cambodia, Japan etc, but he also visits other odd destinations such as Portugal, Russia and Scotland. It's not all fun and games and drinking. There are some moving, souls searching moments when he first has to confront slaughtering and butchering an animal first hand.
Well worth reading. My complaint is that there does not seem to be an audio book that Tony narrated himself. A real shame as he also had a great voice.