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Going Anthony Bourdain style.

Too many questions are posted on this site by food phobes and folks letting the enjoyment of continental cuisine be the first pleasure to fall to budget constraints.

Anyone been here and lived to tell about it?

Posted by
552 posts

A guy can dream can't he?

Plus, I'm willing to share a bath to eat Foie Gras any day.

Posted by
12074 posts

I have to confess I've never read any Bourdain.

I tried to watch the show but it seemed to be focused on taking shots of the local liquor. I wondered how he knew whether the food was good or bad.

I agree with eating real vs. fancy.

Posted by
251 posts

In the culinary world Tour d'Argent no longer has the reputation it once had. I ate their once, before I was a chef, and wasn't all that impressed.

Anyone who reads A. Bourdains work (I've never seen the shows) would know that he believes (so he professes) that the best food isn't found in the fancy restaurants (though he gives a nod to a few exceptions) but in the street stalls and markets and restaurants frequented by workers and real people.

I couldn't agree more. Having travelled for more than 18 years to various continents, and having been a chef for 8 of them. I have to insist that the best , most satisfying, and interesting food, particularly in France, is to be found in small down-to-earth, tiny hamlets, markets, stalls, fish mongers, farmers etc...

Posted by
808 posts

I'm not a "food phobe" nor do I let "the enjoyment of continental cusine be the first pleasure to fall to budget constraints".

I eat very well while abroad. I've enjoyed some outstanding cusine for a fraction of the cost and not enjoyed the same dish which came with a much heaftier price tag. To each his or her own.

Not all of us can enjoy "fine continental cusine" at each meal every time we travel. That is the reality for many of us here. But we still travel, eat rather well and have a great time!

Posted by
552 posts

I'm glad Flight Attendant enjoyed my alliteration.

Perhaps the subject title was too hastily conceived.

I didn't mean to start a tiff.

I made reference to Bourdain because the theme of his show is to discover the true, daily cultural activities and habits of the people he's visiting. Because he's a restauranteur and foodie, there's an emphasis on cuisine, and he finds some good stuff. Sometimes humble and traditional, other times top-notch and innovative, but always interesting in my mind.

I was merely reacting to a person going to London - currently on the vanguard of a new wave of gastronomic hedonism - and they want to know how much a pre-wrapped sandwich is at the Tesco.

So... if you go to London this year and want to "live like a local," make some room in the budget to see what a Michelin star is all about. Just appetizers and a shared dessert is doable and is not going to get you laughed at by the waiter.

If it does, stiff 'em.

Posted by
3580 posts

If you want to see how the locals live, get out of the central tourist area of any town. In London I sometimes stay in West Hampstead (an extra 15 min Tube ride from the center) and walk around the neighborhoods. There are pubs, restaurants at all levels, real neighborhoods with local people in them. A casual expedition up and down the main street will tell you what you need to know. The Earl's Court area is another place to scope out how real Londoners live and eat. There are many hotels there, but it still has a local, small town feel.