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Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations Seasons 1-5


Louisa Chu
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Someone needs to give those crazy Argentinian gauchos their own reality show.

Those guys were a riot - so loopy, even Tony was given them backhand glances! But obviously his kind of glacier-climbing buds. Someone should've told Guacho #1 that, traditional garb aside, ponchos are so not a good a idea to go glacier-climbing in (!)

Cute story-While waiting for the Argentina episode to come on, I caught the NYC rerun. Tony eats some jellied something with his Japanese friends, remarking that a lot of people don't like the squiggly texture; later, he eats a sheep head at Spotted Pig. That very morning, I was in a Miami Beach Jewish Deli, and, along with my chopped liver and pastrami, this being the New Year, I also bought a cooked sheep head (they also had them raw), and P'tcha, which is cow foot jelly. Crazy coincidence! (The sheep head, half a head, really, still had several teeth attached.) Sorry, I tried to post the pictures, but I couldn't seem to do it. See below if you dare.

Edited by Miami Danny (log)
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Its agood thing Tony doesnt still have any stake (steak) in Les Halles...my daughter has been waiting all year to go there for her 21st B'day dinner

She called last night I think she wants a nice veggie plate somewhere after "Argentina"

These liberal intelectual college kids are always so on edge :blink:

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Someone needs to give those crazy Argentinian gauchos their own reality show.

Great show, though I could have done without the knife to the bull's balls part... I think it's one of the first times I'd seen Tony blanch. I know I couldn't have watched that.

Though, in retrospect, better the bull than me. :wink:

The gauchos were hilarious too, and I loved Tony's reactions to them. Perhaps all that time on the plains without human contact affected them...?

Too bad there was nothing about Argentina's burgeoning wine industry.

Cheers! :cool:

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Oh, well, EVERYTHING went wrong in Sicily, shooting-wise, and he was in a bad place emotionally then, too. This should be a great episode - looks like everything went beautifully, everything WAS beautiful, and he had family and friends adding big fun and culinary expertise to the shoot. Should be a blast.

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Yes, it sucks that all that stuff piled up on his first televised Italy visit.  I was too blinded by the scenery to catch anything amiss, so I was sad to find out all that later on.  Though it did give us the nice "fixing the tire" segment (and delicious, nasty rants) used on his Leftovers episode!

So, what happened on that trip? I own the DVD of that episode, but don't remember any discussion of problems.

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Here's a hint of it. You may want to dig around further; this is from page 20 of this thread.

Though always dismayed when people are disappointed by a particular episode, one of the things I'm proudest of about NO RESERVATIONS is that each week differs in mood, tone (and to whatever extent possible) content--as well as degree of "success" or "failure" in capturing a place or a culture. It's a show with noticable--often violent-- mood swings, practically schizophrenic at times. There are numerous examples of places or countries that I clearly--no matter how deserving the subject--I just didn't "get" or do justice to.  The end result of a shooting period in say..Iceland--is entirely dependent on a number of factors, both entirely subjective (Was I in a good mood? Was I tired? Was I cranky? Did I just not connect on a personal level with the people I met during my limited time in country?Did I bring some prejudice or off-camera peronal business to the experience?) to external (Was our fixer not so dynamic? Was the weather bad? Were we just not lucky? Did the reindeer not cooperate? Did we plan poorly?). End of the day, all we hope and try  to do is make the best possible show with what we "got" on the road. In our case--"best possible" means most reflective of MY subjective (if admittedly limited) experience--good or bad. It would surely be easier and often more palatable--and even interesting--had we lied--meaning cobbled together a lot of B-Roll of food close-ups, splice in plenty of beauty shots of pretty vistas, monuments etc. and added a gushing voice over extolling the delights of the subject country, complete with a well-researched litany of historical facts. There's plenty to be said for that kind of approach. It's safer, certainly fairer to the country--and more reliably "interesting" to the majority.

It's also what everybody else does--and what I DON'T and WON'T do. I'd rather have people tune in saying "Mann..last week in Peru was so great..What the hell happened with Sweden?" than have viewers feel they know in advance what to expect. Fact is--I fall in love with some countries and gush about them. Ditto the camera people. Some countries are "shot rich" environments--where everywhere you look there's beautiful B-Roll, gorgeous, interesting, outgoing people and characters. Other places? Not. When I wax philosophic in a heartfelt way about say..Borneo..or China..or Japan..or Peru or Quebec or India, I'd like to be believed. If I pretend that I felt the same way  about my (however inadaquate or unrepresentative) experience in say..Iceland..or Sweden, it devalues the whole enterprise. So all I can say is "stay tuned". There are happy shows...sentimental shows, miserable shows, snarky shows..shows where I loved the country but still feel (and will always feel) I missed the boat. (Sicily for instance--which I loved but where everything seemed to go wrong). I'm NEVER looking to present a representative slice of an entire culture or country in a scant 42 minutes of television. The show--at its best--can ultimatelyonly hope to be about me, me, me and what happened to me--and how I felt about things. I couldn't/wouldn't do it any other way.

I leave that to the professionals.

Coming soon: Puerto Rico..The Tex Mex border..2 India Shows..Korea..and Indonesia..

ETA: I liked the episode too. It just sucks that for various reasons, he didn't look back well on the experience in a place where I think it'd be impossible not to have a good time.

Edited by Kevin72 (log)
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ETA:  I liked the episode too. It just sucks that for various reasons, he didn't look back well on the experience in a place where I think it'd be impossible not to have a good time.

The episode itself didn't suck, I felt - as with Beirut, he made a good show out of less than ideal circumstances. Bourdain discusses the whole Sicily thing in the endnotes (t the back) of Nasty Bits. I actually rather liked the Sicily episode - the caper "farmers", the fishermen, etc. - it was poor Tony who was stuck listening to the wonders of salt over a 3-hour lunch . . . we only got a few minutes of that (!)

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ETA:  I liked the episode too. It just sucks that for various reasons, he didn't look back well on the experience in a place where I think it'd be impossible not to have a good time.

The episode itself didn't suck, I felt - as with Beirut, he made a good show out of less than ideal circumstances. Bourdain discusses the whole Sicily thing in the endnotes (t the back) of Nasty Bits. I actually rather liked the Sicily episode - the caper "farmers", the fishermen, etc. - it was poor Tony who was stuck listening to the wonders of salt over a 3-hour lunch . . . we only got a few minutes of that (!)

I read Nasty Bits, albeit at jury duty and half asleep. I do remember on some interview he mentioned Uzbekistan as being horrible. He said the people were suspicious and threatening and the government goons were leaning on them hard. He was good to go from day one.

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I have to agree, I am really loving this season. Last night was a great show. This season I have wanted to fly off to wherever Tony was by the time the show was over.

I am concerned though, I think if Tony sees too many more field butchery scenes that he may go Vegan on us!

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The gentleman pontificating to Tony on the subject of BBQ sauce at the party (pale yellow/tan suit) is my good friend Buff, a proud son of South Carolina. Through complete happenstance and unknown to me, he happened to have my copy of Kitchen Confidential in his pocket, and it is now sitting proudly,on my shelf, autographed by the man himself. "Cook Free or Die" indeed.

Buff's description of Tony, in typical understated fashion, "...couldn't have been nicer"gallery_39343_5161_121779.jpg

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The gentleman pontificating to Tony on the subject of BBQ sauce at the party (pale yellow/tan suit) is my good friend Buff, a proud son of South Carolina.  Through complete happenstance and unknown to me, he happened to have my copy of Kitchen Confidential in his pocket, and it is now sitting proudly,on my shelf, autographed by the man himself.  "Cook Free or Die" indeed.

  Buff's description of Tony, in typical understated fashion, "...couldn't have been nicer"gallery_39343_5161_121779.jpg

I personally loved the Southern gentleman praying over Tony - "and, Lord, just take Tony as he is" - who then turned out to be a major Ramones fan. BTW, the Cook Free or Die T's are available from grillbitch.com. (Yes, Beth Aretsky!) :cool:
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HI ...new to the forum so HI :biggrin:

However I"m a long time fan of NR, I just love Tony I think he's one of the most awesome humans on the planet. I love his attitude about everything. He seems down to earth.

I too missed the Cleveland episode, same deal where the DVR did a hiccup and it's not on there, everyone swears they didn't delete it. However I saw the HK show and this weeks SC show....that was some serious down home cooking type food there.

I'm so looking forward to Tuscany next week, the food there ought to be simply amazing.

Question: Does anyone know if he plans to come to the NW part of the US anytime soon?

Thanks

Jeanine

Edited by jclaar (log)
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Question:  Does anyone know if he plans to come to the NW part of the US anytime soon?

Thanks

Jeanine

Fans are eagerly awaiting his book-signing and public appearance schedule, which TB said he'd post to the Travel Channel No Rez board. It will then, I am sure, miraculously appear on eGullet on the No Rez Board under Food and Literature since it deals with NR the book, rather than this board - No Rez (Food and TV/Radio), which is restricted to discussions of the actual TV show.
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Just finished watching this episode on my DVR (which didn't screw up this week). I thought it was OK, not great. The Rachel Ray and the priest bit were my favs, but the rest of the episode was just so-so. I don't know why, these are first impressions, but there you have it.

I am, however, looking forward to the Tuscany one next week.

Cheers! :cool:

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