Events / Foodie / New York City

Working up an Appetite – Anthony Bourdain Book Signing



Our Lil Chef in the making with Anthony Bourdain at the Appetites Book launch/signing event.

My husband and I are HUGE fans of Anthony and his work. Many nights are filled with DVR backlogged shows of Anthony’s Travels through Parts Unknown, The Layover, or his earlier show – No Reservations. We love to binge watch a number of episodes at a time, usually with a cocktail in hand, reliving his travels.

Lil Kid, avid food lover and chef (way beyond mommy’s skills already at the age of 4) loves to watch his shows too. He knows Anthony Bourdain by name. He especially loves watching the cooking segments, exploring the travel, and how other cultures cook together. Yes- some colorful language in the episodes, but hey – that happens from time to time at home too. We live in New York City – there is more colorful here then anything. And color makes things pretty. My philosophy – You need to teach, not shelter.

When we heard that Anthony had released a cookbook with a family undertone – we were excited. A book by our favorite chef that we could enjoy with our son! A book to cook from, to share. When we snagged tickets to the book signing – I was ecstatic. Couldn’t wait to sit in the discussion and hear his inspirations from the book. And even more importantly – the perfect opportunity to have Lil Kid meet the man, and chef, he knows from our home TV.


With his own copy!

“Appetites” is Anthony’s first cookbook in over 10 years, and is written with a family undertone. Now as a father of a 9 year old girl – the book highlights his personal favorite home cooked meals, and in-home entertaining tips.

While it is a cookbook – I love that it still reads true to Anthony’s style. The book is witty and bold, with notes and stories about each entry before the recipe itself.


Digging in. Of course, Lil Kid cannot read yet, but its quite amazing what children can amass from pictures. He was calling out certain foods to me from his seat, and which one he wants to try himself when he gets home.



Looking around the room – it was quite amazing to see Anthony’s reach. Young to old (truth be told – Lil Kid was the youngest) male and female, all walks of life, and all nationalities alike. From NYU College students skipping their tests, literature fans, travel gurus, and culinary chefs – all huddled together waiting for a chance to hear the author himself. Swapping stories on why they were there, their favorite book, or episode.


Anthony spoke about his inspirations for the book to a sold out audience.

The Appetites book boils down 40 plus years of professional cooking and world traveling to a tight list of personal favorites — dishes that everyone should (at least in Mr. Bourdain’s opinion) know how to cook.

He said that while they are not ground breaking recipes,  but stuff that he feels strongly that everybody should know how to at least cook.

He spoke much about his family life.  Anthony said hat he travels 250 days a year. When he’s home – the whole menu revolves around what her daughter likes. He shows his affection by cooking. He loves to cook for love. Doesn’t need to be fancy.  Nothings worse then being a chef – cooking food he didn’t like, for a boss he didn’t like, for people/customers he didn’t like. Now – cooking for his little girl and parties with her little friends – throwing burgers on the grill – is so fun. It makes him so happy. It’s the good stuff.

He also said that he loves making his daughter breakfast and school lunch. Anthony said that he gets super competitive with school lunches. Things like Grilled Octopus salad – just to imagine the other kids saying “Oh dude thats gross!” He loves to “show up those other bitches.” The audience went wild.

Loved how Anthony said that some things are just good the way they are – and you shouldn’t f*** them up. For example – the book includes a recipe for Tomato Soup – which Anthony said deliberately mimics Campbell’s Creme of Tomato Soup that his mom used to make after school. Can of Soup – add milk, served with saltines. That was his notion of soup. You could make him a soup with the worlds best ingredients – but if it doesn’t taste like Campbell’s – its just not the same. There is an emotional, nostalgic, connection to food that must be realized.

A memory I hope I can instill with our son.  A signature dish that brings back nostalgia, to a moment in childhood.


In line to have his book signed. Loved watching all the fans interact with Anthony. Some brought gifts – from food items, home cooking, and some even liquor that they Anthony drank with them on the spot.


The littlest fan.


After the copy was signed:

“Hope you learn to cook from this book. There’s some bad language in there, I apologize in advance.”
Laughter erupted from security and the line behind us.

Lil Kid, usually the quiet and shy guy, asked “When did you started being a chef?”
Anthony’s response “A long long long long…..time ago.”

One of the cutest moments that I will never forget.

See more on Anthony’s new book Appetites HERE


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