8 /10 A Happy Dishwasher

Bourdain grew up in Leonia, New Jersey. He started the journey into the culinary world during his early teens by working in the kitchens, not as a cook, let alone chef, but as a dishwasher.

At one point, he worked in Cape Cod, Massachusetts. During an interview with NPR in 2016, Bourdain claimed to have been “a happy dishwasher” back then and jokingly claimed to have learned every vital life lesson at the job.

In those early working days, he began accustomed to using drugs, a habit that eventually escalated into heroin addiction.


7 /10 Don't Eat Before Reading This

After two years at New York’s Vassar College, he decided to leave and enroll in culinary school.

He worked for years as a line cook, then climbing up the ladder to sous chef, before ending up as the executive chef at Brasserie Les Halles in Manhattan.

In 1999, he came to prominence when the New Yorker published his “Don’t Eat Before Reading This” article which morphed into the book mentioned above.

When the book came out, Bourdain was on the right path to international stardom. His suicide now looms over every story about the famous chef.


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