Kitchen Confidential

Kitchen Confidential

Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly

Average Rating:
Rate this:
New York Chef Tony Bourdain gives away secrets of the trade in his wickedly funny, inspiring memoir/expose. Kitchen Confidential reveals what Bourdain calls "twenty-five years of sex, drugs, bad behavior and haute cuisine." Last summer,The New Yorker published Chef Bourdain's shocking, "Don't Eat Before Reading This." Bourdain spared no one's appetite when he told all about what happens behind the kitchen door. Bourdain uses the same "take-no-prisoners" attitude in his deliciously funny and shockingly delectable book, sure to delight gourmands and philistines alike. From Bourdain's first oyster in the Gironde, to his lowly position as dishwasher in a honky tonk fish restaurant in Provincetown (where he witnesses for the first time the real delights of being a chef); from the kitchen of the Rainbow Room atop Rockefeller Center, to drug dealers in the east village, from Tokyo to Paris and back to New York again, Bourdain's tales of the kitchen are as passionate as they are unpredictable.Kitchen Confidentialwill make your mouth water while your belly aches with laughter. You'll beg the chef for more, please.
Publisher: New York, NY :, Bloomsbury
Copyright Date: ©2000
ISBN: 9781596917248
Characteristics: 1 online resource
text file,rda
Additional Contributors: OverDrive, Inc. - Distributor

Related Resources


From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment
JCLMattC Aug 28, 2019

Yes this is crass and a little on the vulgar side - I personally didn't find it that offensive - but it's also passionate! I was swept away by the dedication that these rough-and-tumble characters have to their craft, the language of their world and the beauty that comes from it.

Apr 10, 2019

I do not work in the restaurant business, but this book from a civilian viewpoint was amazing and insightful into the world of professional culinary arts and business.

Mar 08, 2019

Read this when it first came out and I was working for an executive chef. Wildly entertaining. Fun, fast read and pretty much on point. Highly recommend.

Jan 15, 2019

I nodded at all the politically incorrect shenanigans in cooking school & restaurants I used to work.
Author nailed it.

Jan 11, 2019

I only knew of Anthony Bourdain through his show "Parts Unknown" which I could easily recommend to anyone who has any interest in food, culture or just good documentary television. However, there is no way to distinguish between his spoken and written voice in this book (which I consider a major positive). For having a past filled with debauchery, the intellect, humor and overall passion of Bourdain bleeds through the pages of this memoir/exposé about the culinary world in the late 20th century and what it's become today. If you don't like reading check out his show. If you like his show read this book.

Aug 31, 2018

An excellent book about the steamy jungle of the kitchen in many restaurants. This book is not for the faint of heart. It is sometimes crude, coarse, but honest. I can hear Anthony Bourdain's voice coming through loud and clear in his writing. I will miss his creative genius from his CNN show. A must read!

SCL_Justin Jul 27, 2018

When Anthony Bourdain died this year, I hadn't read anything by him, but my partner got me to watch some of his CNN show, Parts Unknown and I could see why people really liked his work.

Kitchen Confidential was the book that put Bourdain on the map (or on the Food Network) and it is a good look at a weird style of workplace. Though in the book he's writing with the brashness of someone who knows everything, I wonder how much of the experience of these styles of kitchens only apply in New York City. In a late chapter he does tell the reader that what he's describing (a macho sadistic culture Jordan Peterson would admire) is not the only way a kitchen can be, but he's described his kitchens so well already they're what stick with you as a reader.

In the end, I prefer late-career Bourdain's work but I can see why this would become so well-regarded.

Jun 28, 2018

I did not like this book. After it was announced that the author committed suicide in 2018 I decided to read it hoping to learn more about what goes on in the kitchen. I was a waitress in the fifties and sixties I never saw any kind of activity like he describes. It starts out very vulgar and doesn't get any better. I tried to read a sentence or two in a different chapters and didn't find anything of value in my opinion. I thought it was vulgar crass and disgusting.

Jun 20, 2018

Anthony Bourdain was an amazing storyteller. Kitchen Confidential is an insiders look at the inside story of the restaurant industry. He is frank about his past substance abuse and how it affected his relationship with cooking, and we see his rise to the top. His voice with be sorely missed.

K_ROK May 28, 2017

For any of us who used to or still do work in the culinary industry I can say that they will appreciate this book. A sous chef at a restaurant I was working at at the time recommended this book and I loved it. Most diners will have no idea about what really goes on between front and back of house staff, and what happens after the restaurant closes for the night. Great perspective, told in a raw fashion that agrees with the crudeness and cutthroat culture of this industry, this book is a great read.

View All Comments

Age Suitability

Add Age Suitability

There are no age suitabilities for this title yet.


Add a Summary

There are no summaries for this title yet.


Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.


Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further


Subject Headings


Find it at VIRL

To Top