Ottavia Bourdain Incites ‘Steakgate’ in Vegas

By Karen

But first… Congratulations to Anthony Bourdain and No Reservations on 4 Emmy nominations. I didn’t notice any other Travel Channel blockbusters on the nominees list; they must be eating their hearts out at TC about Tony’s defection to CNN. The categories are:

  • Outstanding Nonfiction Series
  • Outstanding Writing – Cuba
  • Outstanding Cinematography – Mozambique
  • Outstanding Picture Editing – U.S. Desert

Back to Ottavia’s brouhaha… It all started when Grub Street innocently published her “week in the life of” guest blog post. What that woman eats is mind-boggling, but it was her description of a bad steak in an unnamed restaurant in Las Vegas while attending a UFC event with her husband that lit up the ‘Net.

So this guy named John Curtas rebuked Ottavia’s unsophisticated palate in his column at Eating Las Vegas, and Tony leaped to his wife’s defense on Twitter, calling the column “idiotic” and “based on a false premise” (which was where they stayed, which supposedly housed the offending restaurant) — and Tony even stooped to spelling the columnist’s name “Curtass.”

The foodie world went into overdrive trying to ascertain the chef, throwing names around that included Tony’s pal, Mario Batali. But finally the culprit revealed himself to be Charlie Palmer. Since Ottavia didn’t send the steak back, Palmer rued being unable to make things right on the spot and apologized.

On the other hand, you have to appreciate Ottavia’s dilemma. Sitting there with the well-recognized Bourdain, she either had to choke down that steak or earn herself the reputation of being Tony’s picky-eater-bitch-wife.

Personally, I think she took the high road. There’s no sin in describing a bad meal, yet much virtue in concealing who prepared it if the intent isn’t to slam the chef.

And there’s nothing more amusing than watching foodies work themselves into a lather over a freaking steak, how it was cooked, and who cooked it. If the words “GET A LIFE!” have any significant context, this is it.

Moving on to the must-see Web TV department…

Eric Ripert has a new web series, On the Table, on the Reserve Channel, and Tony was his first guest. Without a doubt, it’s the most candid, natural, and informative interview I’ve ever seen Bourdain do. Eric knows Tony so well, he provided the perfect atmosphere (they cooked together in a home-like kitchen), asked the right questions to get Tony on new ground, and provides a bit of commentary on his best friend. It’s in 3 parts for about 22 minutes.

As a sidebar, talking to Grub Street with Eric about that show, Tony revealed that Ariane is a big Katie Perry fan and has a crush on Ripert’s son, among other things.

Other news…

If you’re interested in Get Jiro! (which took the No. 1 spot on the NY Times Bestseller List for graphic novels), Tony talked to MTVGeek about it at San Diego Comic-Con recently.

Here’s another Comic-Con interview.

July 30-Aug. 5, Bourdain will be hosting “Mob Week” movies on AMC in prime time.

Treme Season 3 begins September 23 with 10 episodes, and Tony is back, writing the New Orleans restaurant subplot for Janette.

And if owning one copy isn’t enough for you, a new edition of Kitchen Confidential is coming out this fall, with Bourdain’s handwritten margin updates.

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13 Responses to Ottavia Bourdain Incites ‘Steakgate’ in Vegas

  1. Bacardi1 says:

    As usual, you’ve now turned what was supposed to be a productive morning into one that will just assist in broadening my behind – lol!!

    But also as usual – thanks for all the great links! : )

  2. catsworking says:

    Bacardi, aside from the comic book, Bourdain has been pretty interesting lately. And it’s only going to get better once his new shows ramp up.

  3. Zappa's Mom says:

    Just one more reason to hate cell phones and social media-everyone is an instant paparazzo/critic

  4. adele says:

    I particularly loved the Bourdain/Ripert interview and the discussion of how your porn name consists of your first pet’s name along with the name of the first street you lived on. (I had also heard pet’s name + mother’s maiden name. So Bourdain becomes Poochie Orchard and Riper becomes Sammy Mouffetard. I would be Blackbird Rush — how about the rest of you?

    Much to my surprise, I really liked Get Jiro, and I’ve never been a comic book or cartoon fan.There were some great puns (for whichI have a weakness), and I’ve been craving some good sushi since reading it.

    BTW, I just read that Gwynneth Paltrow is slated to play Gabrielle Hamilton in a film adaptation of Blood, Bones and Butter. Humh, I say.

  5. Bacardi1 says:

    That would make me “Herman Cemetery” – lol!

  6. catsworking says:

    Adele, I’m not surprised you like Get Jiro. You undoubtedly got into what went right over my head. For example, I can’t recall a single pun.

    Interestingly, Entertainment Weekly did a 15-page spread on Comic-Con last week, with extensive photos of many attendees. Bourdain was not among them, nor did Get Jiro get a mention anywhere in the text, that I could see. His dream demographic of violence-loving young men totally into sushi would seem to be an urban myth. That the book shot to No. 1 on the NYT bestseller list for graphic novels was, I believe, thanks to his No Res fan base “hungry for more.” But would it translate to an ongoing audience for this stuff? I think not.

    My porn name would be Frisky Milk.

    I think Gwyneth Paltrow would make a good Gabrielle Hamilton, but a movie of that book would be a snooze. It would be nothing but a vehicle for food porn.

  7. adele says:

    Bacardi, with a porn name like that, I see a career in snuff flicks. What sort of an animal was Herman? A friend of mine’s porn name would have been Deadeye Wacker — not bad.

    Karen, it just dawned on me that Gwynneth Paltrow considers herself quite the foodie, so perhaps she’s developing BB&B as a star vehicle for herself. I agree; it’s hard to picture the type of film it would make.

  8. Bacardi1 says:

    LOL! “Herman”, my first pet, was a beige hamster with cute little shoe-button eyes. And “Cemetery Lane”, where I grew up, had (& still has) an old, historic, & extremely interesting family cemetery on it that perches along a bay waterfront & contains the graves of a fair number of ship captains & Revolutionary-War era folk.

  9. catsworking says:

    Adele, isn’t Gwyneth Paltrow a vegetarian? Remember how Tony talked shit about her when she was doing that series with Mario Batali and wouldn’t eat meat? Remembering that, I don’t see how she COULD play Garbielle Hamilton unless they use a stunt mouth for all the carnivorous scenes.

  10. Zappa's Mom says:

    My porn name is YumYum Wesmond

  11. adele says:

    ZM, Yum-Yum Wesmond is an excellent porn name.

    Karen, Gwynneth eats fish and I think, poultry,but no red meat;it is hard to picture her sucking the marrow out of bones or taking part in the Hamilton family lamb roasts. If this project ever gets off the ground, I’d think it would focus on the development of Prune and the scenes in Italy, but what do I know?

  12. Mary Austin says:

    My porn name would be Midnight Bellaire!!!!

  13. catsworking says:

    Mary, I think you take the prize for the best porn name yet! It makes me picture you hustling tricks on Rodeo Drive.

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