The celebrity rock star chef who rocked the world with his witty, raw and gritty take on food, travel and most especially, culture has just passed away in France during the taping of his current show, “Parts Unknown.”
He went to the Philippines a couple of times, twice for his shows, “No Reservations” and “Parts Unknown”. His shows introduced the Filipino cuisine to the world. He praised the Philippine Lechon as the “world’s best roasted pig,” and Sisig where he proudly told viewers that it was the best especially when paired with beer.
He also mentioned that he has a “personal connection” with the country as his daughter was also raised by a Filipina. Bourdain wondered, through the personal connection he experienced, why Filipinos are so caring, kind and giving. The episode on “Parts Unknown” was made to find answers. The video struck the very core of Filipino’s traits and left a good chunk of Filipinos teary-eyed, revealing the world not just about Filipino food but also, the kind of culture we have — from our love for singing to love of unknown people.
Let us take a look back at the quotes he said about our country, our food, our culture, and most especially, about us, Filipinos.
1. “Filipinos are probably the most giving people on the planet.”
In his “Parts Unknown” show, he showed the ugly slums of Manila but, experienced the love that has been shared around the world through our OFWs — an answer to his question which he personally felt with his daughter’s experience.
2. "I think it's the most likely to convince people abroad who have had no exposure to Filipino food to maybe look further and investigate further beyond sisig.”
Bourdain put the Filipino food in the international scene and told in one of his interviews that it will be the next best thing in America.
3. "I think sisig is perfectly positioned to win the hearts and minds of the world as a whole.”
Another one for sisig!
4. "It is true that I lie to my daughter and tell her that Ronald McDonald has been implicated in the disappearance of small children, that I sneer at fast food, revile it at every opportunity, but I am also a hypocrite because to me Filipino chain Jollibee is the wackiest, jolliest place on Earth.”
After eating spaghetti and chicken at Jollibee during his second visit in Manila.
5. "It's wondrous. I don't even know what half of these ingredients are.”
After eating home-made halo-halo, sitting at the sidewalk of the slums in Manila. He even gave everyone, especially the kids, a treat around.
6. “It is the finest pig I've ever had.”
He had the first taste of Filipino lechon in his first visit to Manila for the “No Reservations” show.
7. "Everybody seems to sing – an affinity passed on to my daughter. Family – and church, of course, loom large (even in my otherwise atheistic household).”
On Filipino singing their hearts out and mostly finding Filipino bands in many bars and restaurants anywhere Bourdain goes in the world.
8. “If I'm an advocate for anything, it's to move. As far as you can, as much as you can. Across the ocean, or simply across the river. Walk in someone else's shoes or at least eat their food. It's a plus for everybody.”
Lastly, although in no relation to Filipinos and his Philippine travels, here’s a great line he said about the importance of travel.
For sure, Bourdain is in a long trip to food heaven. But, for us and for the world he left, it’s beginning to be a less exciting and fun now that he’s not anymore around.
Safe travels Tony! You will be missed.
BONUS: "It seems that the more places I see and experience, the bigger I realize the world to be. The more I become aware of, the more I realize how relatively little I know of it, how many places I have still to go, how much more there is to learn. Maybe that’s enlightenment enough: to know that there is no final resting place of the mind; no moment of smug clarity. Perhaps wisdom … is realizing how small I am, and unwise, and how far I have yet to go.”
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