Bourdainian Philosophy: the wisdom of No Reservations in Parts Unknown

A straightforward way of life as seen through the bottom of Anthony Bourdain’s empty beer glass.

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It’s Tony’s favorite cocktail, The Negroni. Photo by Erik Blair.

Bourdainian 101

** Travel **

“If I’m an advocate for anything, it’s to move. As far as you can, as much as you can. Across the ocean, or simply across the river. Walk in someone else’s shoes or at least eat their food. It’s a plus for everybody.” — Tony

“Without experimentation, a willingness to ask questions and try new things, we shall surely become static, repetitive, and moribund.”

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Photo Credit: Anna Hanks

“As you move through this life and this world, you change things slightly; you leave marks behind, however small. And in return, life — and travel — leaves marks on you. Most of the time, those marks — on your body or on your heart — are beautiful. Often, though, they hurt.” — Tony

** Food **

“I like food. It was the center of my life for thirty years and I’ll always look at the world through that prism.”

** Coffee **

“Coffee. And I want utility coffee, coffee with a picture of the Parthenon on a cardboard cup. Strong, but with cream and sugar. The guy selling donuts out of the cart, that’s what I emulate at home when I brew coffee on my Mr. Coffee.” — Tony

** In-N-Out Hamburger **

“What can I say about this place? It’s the only fast-food chain that I actually like, and think is reasonably good for the world. Whenever I come to L.A. — in fact, one of the reasons I look forward to doing The Taste — is because as soon as I arrive I’ll hit the airport In-N-Out, and on my way out of town, after finishing The Taste, I’ll pick up another. Every once in a while I’ll even buy a big reeking back of burgers with onions and fries and shakes, and I’ll bring ’em back through my very nice hotel lobby, and it’s really an amazing thing to see. Generally speaking, when you walk through a lobby of a nice hotel with a big reeking bag of fast-food, people look at you like you’re low class, like, ‘Why are you bringing that in here? We do have a restaurant.’ No, nothing but love and admiration, even from the staff. They’re like, ‘Good going sir, nicely done sir, excellent!” — Tony

** Drinking is a Social Activity **

“A Negroni is a perfect drink as far as I’m concerned. It’s three liquors that I’m not particularly interested in… But put them together with a slice of orange. It works… That first sip is confusing and not particularly pleasant. But man it grows on you.” — Tony

Practicing Bourdainism

Go somewhere you’ve never been, eat whatever they have there, wake up and smell the coffee, don’t be afraid to indulge yourself occasionally, and drink socially whenever and wherever possible.

“Maybe that’s enlightenment enough: to know that there is no final resting place of the mind; no moment of smug clarity. Perhaps wisdom … is realizing how small I am, and unwise, and how far I have yet to go.” — Tony

Written by

Seeker of people & experiences that warm your heart, wake your mind, and move your spirit; frequent finder of four-leaf clovers

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