Globe-trotting travel enthusiast, author, chef, and trailblazing personality Anthony Bourdain has died, and tributes have been pouring in from the many people whose lives he touched and inspired.
Though Bourdain’s home base was New York, he was on the road about two thirds of every year, following his relentless pursuit of good food, new experiences, and good conversations.
As traveloges, Bourdain’s multiple television series remain primers for the truly curious, or just wishful vicarious viewing. He spotlights everything from star chefs to unsung heroes of small villages. Bourdain made the world feel closer.
For the first episode of the fourth season of his Travel Channel show No Reservations, Bourdain came to Vancouver.
“It’s a foodie town, a chef town, a multicultural city… a proverbial melting pot where the elements don’t melt too much and lose distinct flavours,” Bourdain said of Vancouver.
Proof positive: the trio of Vancouver chefs considered godfathers in their respective cuisines. Bourdain pals it up with Pino Posteraro, Hidekazu Tojo, and Vikram Vij in this episode, including at Tojo’s famed sushi restaurant, and at an intimate in-home dinner.
Other stops include Japadog, which in 2008 was still leading the way as far as fusion street vending goes. You’ll probably still see Bourdain’s mug festooned on Japadog’s now-ubiquitous hot dog carts; I certainly remember seeing them back around the episode’s time, too.
Other moments include a trip to Whistler, a visit to a set (where he encounters future local food biz insider Uwe Boll), and zip line ride. He also heads to Vancouver Island to stop in at Sooke Harbor House.
Bourdain’s impact on the world’s roamers, dreamers, chefs, and eaters will be felt for decades to come. He was still making TV when he ended his life.
CNN is currently airing the 11th season of “Parts Unknown,” and Bourdain was in France shooting an episode for the 12th season. CNN said it has not made a decision yet on whether it will proceed with the current season, reports the Canadian Press.
Vancouverites, for a glimpse of what Vancouver was like through Bourdain’s No Reservations lens in 2008, here is the full episode.