Kitchen Confidential: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly Summary & Study Guide

Anthony Bourdain
This Study Guide consists of approximately 33 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of Kitchen Confidential.
This section contains 444 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Kitchen Confidential: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly Study Guide

Kitchen Confidential: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly Summary & Study Guide Description

Kitchen Confidential: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly Summary & Study Guide includes comprehensive information and analysis to help you understand the book. This study guide contains the following sections:

This detailed literature summary also contains Topics for Discussion and a Free Quiz on Kitchen Confidential: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly by Anthony Bourdain.

Kitchen Confidential: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly by Anthony Bourdain is the story of Bourdain's initiation into the world of food and the love for the culinary arts which fuels Bourdain's life and career.

Bourdain is introduced to French food during a summer vacation to Europe as a young boy, and recalls that the taste of vichyssoise was the impetus for his love of food. Spurning many of the dishes served to him during this vacation, Bourdain's senses come alive when given the opportunity to taste French provincial food, including oysters fresh from the sea.

A completely random job as a busboy at a Provincetown, Massachusetts restaurant during a summer during his college years launches Bourdain into the established world of restaurant work. Bourdain witnesses the power of not only the food, but also the chefs and cooks who inhabit and control the very private world of restaurant kitchens. Bourdain garners basic kitchen skills during his summer work at a family style restaurant called The Dreadnaught, where he also learns the macho culture of kitchen work.

Determined to rise in the kitchen hierarchy, Bourdain attends the Culinary Institute of American in Hyde Park, New York for two years. Armed with newfound skills and expertise, Bourdain works for a while at the Rainbow Room in New York City, learning the kitchen dynamics of food preparation in massive quantities.

Bourdain's career is filled with jobs at many restaurants in varying degrees of success and decline where he learns how to manage restaurant owners as well as his kitchen colleagues. During his career, Bourdain indulges in self-destructive behavior, including drug and alcohol abuse, partly because of his indulgent personality and partly because of the extreme circumstances of enduring long and brutal hours of kitchen work.

While cynical and sarcastic, Bourdain maintains a deep loyalty for his friends in the culinary profession and hires them each time he moves to various restaurants. By the time Bourdain is chef at the famous Brasserie Les Halles in New York City, he has reached a point where he is confident in his skills and his position and also secure enough to acknowledge the skills of other chefs who have taken more disciplined paths during their careers.

Bourdain also acknowledges that his self-destructive behavior early in his career has taken its toll not only on himself but on others depending on him, such as his wife and various restaurant owners, and he regrets some of the things he has done to squander talent and resources. Ultimately though, Bourdain loves the restaurant business and plans to remain a chef as long as he is able and as long as someone has the faith to hire him.

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This section contains 444 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Kitchen Confidential: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly Study Guide
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