No Reservations: The Shwarma and Shrapnel Episode


7/14/06 — Welcome Metafilterites!

IMG_4891.JPG

“we are currently shooting an episode of NR in Lebanon–and it should be video gold. Those kookie-krazy kids from Hezbollah were popping off their weapons today(shooting in the air, I gather)–and Israel has been bombing and mobilizing a division in the South with reported land and sea strikes… (See today’s news–and quotes from Israeli PM). While the party continues in Beirut–there’s a lot of concern that the Israelis will follow up with strikes on infrastructure (like the power grid). And we were due to head to the Bekka Valley tomorrow. BTW..this town is Party Central!”

eG Forums discussion — Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations

A day later…

“Our network, our friends and our families just want us out of here as soon as possible,” Bourdain told Page Six yesterday afternoon, as Israeli shells exploded in the distance. “We’re not getting a show out of this . . . I just wanna hang out and drink at the bar. The mojitos here are great.”

CHEF FILES BEIRUT CONFIDENTIAL By RICHARD JOHNSON with PAULA FROELICH and CHRIS WILSON – New York Post Online Edition: Gossip

WSB-TV Atlanta: Celeb Chef Bourdain Stuck in Lebanon

7/14/06 – Updates, from the Discovery Travel Channel website:

“Thanks for the good thoughts and well wishes. We are all of us (Diane, Jerry, Toddles, Tracey and me) in good health, good spirits and working ferociously on our tans and sipping blender drinks while watching the fireworks from a secure location. Our masters at Travel Channel have made sure we are being well looked after. Though I’m not sure the “gold-plated, monkey-navigated rocket-sled” I requested as an exfiltration vehicle will be laid on imminently…we have nothing to complain about. Particularly compared to the locals who are having an atrocious time of it. This is a great city–filled with many lovely, proud and generous people and it’s heartbreaking missing so much of it. Worse seeing all that pride and hope and tolerance turn overnight to grim resignation. Hope to return to shoot here someday and finish what we started.”

7-18-06: Update from Bourdain on eG Forums:

I’m very aware of how flip my response to the Post was (made last Wednesday, very early in the crisis) as I sought to reassure family and friends that we were safe and okayand in good cheer… It was — at the time — very representative of the (outward) attitude of Beirutis themselves, who pride themselves on their resilience and their determination to “keep the party going.” Initially, many Beirutis were still going strong at nightclubs as jets flew low and menacingly overhead. Even that proud, famously world-weary attitude quickly changed, however, as circumstances here became even more appalling. I can certainly understand how offensive it might be to those on the ground here — or those with family and friends here — to read some of what’s been posted on the other NR thread — and understand why it’s been closed for now.

It is indeed heartbreaking and horrifying what has happened to this lovely country — to spanking new, lovingly restored,resurgent Beirut in particular, in only a few days of sustained and seemingly senseless destruction. A few days ago, this was a place where people were bursting with pride for the relative tolerance, progressive attitudes, and lack of conflict between groups. I was standing with a group: a Sunni, a Christian, and a Shiite — by the Hariri memorial when the gunfire started and the Hezbollah people appeared driving through city center and honking their horns in “celebration” for the capture/kidnappings. The look of dismay and embarrasment on all three faces… and the grim look of resignation as they all– instantly– recognized what would inevitably come next… it’s something I will never forget. Of the three, our Shiite security guy, a tall, taciturn man, was the last to leave us, insisiting on staying by our side though he and his family lived in the much more perilous Southern part of Beirut. After witnessing many quick telephone exchanges between him and his family, and as more bombs and shells began to fall, seeing him nervously fingering his prayer beads, we finally convinced him to leave. His house was later flattened… We were soon relocated to a safer part of town.The sense of regret and… shame we feel at being relatively safe yet witness to the carnage… and that we never got to show the world how beautiful this country and its people are — how much “like us” (yet uniquely and wonderfully not) how international, muti-lingual, multi-faith… how fantastic the food and hospitality is… will gnaw at us forever. WE will make it home. WE — unlike most Lebanese, have been (relatively) safe and secure during this. Trapped, yes — but trapped by a freaking swimming pool, not under the rubble of our homes. We may be only a few thousand yards or a few miles from the falling bombs, but we have an eventual way out. What hasn’t been talked about much in the press, is how many young returnees there are/were here: young, educated Lebanese who’d emigrated abroad or been born aboad and only recenly returned… how filled with hope they were, how much they loved their country, how hopeful and enthusiastic they were that they could make a difference (and they WERE making a difference). That is all ashes now…

We (the NR crew) are indeed well — and well looked after. It’s indeed frightening here, it’s enraging, it’s horrifying,and its frustrating..the classic “long hours of boredom interspersed with moments of terror” phenom they always use when talking about life during wartime. But we are relatively safe. And sooner or later we will no doubt be heading home.


We will never forget the Beirut that could have been-and will hopefully be again. Or what we saw here.

7-20-06: Updates from the Travel Channel website:

Friends and fans,

We’re delighted to inform you that Tony and the entire crew left Beirut this morning on the USS Nashville en route to Larnaca, Cyprus. We have arranged special air travel to have them back in the USA as soon as possible. On behalf of Tony, the crew, Travel Channel, and Discovery Communications, we’d like to thank you for your concern and support during this difficult time. We look forward to sharing Tony’s experience from Beirut with you soon, stay tuned for more information on a possible special episode of “No Reservations.”

More news from Reuters:

ON BOARD THE USS NASHVILLE, July 20 (Reuters) – Lying on a green army cot as a U.S. navy ship spirits him away from violence-stricken Lebanon, American television food show host Anthony Bourdain says his heart is broken.

Bourdain, whose show “Anthony Bourdain — No Reservations” takes him around the world to experience new culture and cuisine, was shooting an episode in Beirut before the outbreak of violence that is threatening to spiral out of control. “We’d been hearing great things about Beirut and arrived and quickly fell in love with the country,” he told Reuters. “It was paradise, sort of the western dream of the way we’d all like the Middle East to be — enlightened, progressive, multi-cultural, and multi-religious.” But after two days of eating and drinking, the experience went sour on July 12 when he and his new Lebanese friends heard gunfire from Hizbollah militants celebrating the abduction of two Israeli soldiers.

But Bourdain said his efforts to leave Lebanon had not been easy, frustrated by unanswered telephone calls to the embassy and a “horror show” at a beach outside Beirut where they had gathered before U.S. Navy and marines whisked 1,052 Americans to the ship by landing craft and then on to nearby Cyprus.

“At the checkpoints, it was like a Metallica concert gone horribly wrong,” he said. “It was a mob scene.” Bourdain said the rapidly escalating violence had destroyed a blossoming city that had finally begun to emerge as a vibrant, democratic cultural hotspot after a civil war and the subsequent political influence of neighbouring Syria. “I feel this awful sense of regret that we were never able to show Beirut as it was,” he said. “To see everyone’s hopes die and watch the country dismantled piece by piece was very painful. I’m very angry and very frustrated.”

7-22-06: Updates from eG Forums

Me, Jerry, Todd, Tracey and Diane are all safely home .. I should tell you that expressions of concern here at eGullet were a comfort to us while we hunkered down in Beirut..and that we’re enormously grateful to the Travel Channel, who took extreme measures to see we were as safe as possible while in Beirut–and then went to extraordinary lengths to get us safely and quickly back. Main Man at Travel, Patrick Younge, even met us at the airport with a pack of my very-hard-to-find cigarette of choice in hand. I can’t say enough nice things about the Beirut (and the Beirutis) we saw and met in the short time before everything went to hell. And I can’t begin to describe how regretful we are that we won’t be able to show the world how beautiful a place, how good the food, how nice the people we experienced in the two short days we had of unrestrained filming . Freshly back–and ahead of so many others– it would seem ungrateful to share my dim view of how the US embassy and State dept. appeared to be going about their business. BUT: My admiration for the sailors and marines of the Nashville and the way in which they–at short notice, last minute, steamed from Jordan to perform an incredible difficult job (for which they had had little if any experience) is boundless. The minute we became charges of the navy and marines, we (and everyone else aboard–from beachhead to Cyprus) were treated with breathtaking kindness,generosity and sensitivity. The minute we passed into their care, every aspect of exfiltration was performed with incredible efficiency and care. I will never forget the impromptu refugee camp set up on the Nashville’s flight deck: EVERY group of huddled evacuees, families, children, old people–had at least one or two marines sitting with them, talking to them, seeing to their needs. Most of these young men and women knew nothing of Beirut. Many who I spent time with on the smoking deck (Yes! a smoking deck!), had never even been to New York–much less been trained to handle (in many cases) psychologically shattered refugees. They treated everyone, EVERYONE with patience, courtesy and kindness. The logistical challenges alone were enormous–that they managed to perform them so flawlessly AND keep the kids amused, feed any and all tuna noodle casserole, macaroni and cheese, corn dogs and key lime pie…give up their own blankets and sheets…give tours and every other imaginable measure of hospitality was..well..awesome. To my mind, they put every other branch of govt involved in this horror show to shame. It is always a joy and a relief to find oneself in the hands of professionals.

You have all likely seen the photo of the young marine, Sanchez, holding two infants, kissing one of the cheek as he carried them across the water onto the landing craft. It was quite another thing to meet him and talk with him (him still holding a freshly printed copy of tomorrow’s wire service cover photo)…an ordinary young man, getting ribbed by his buddies for being thrust into extraordinary circumstances. Bashful, proud, emotional and inspiringly..human.

We are very aware–painfully aware–that we are among the fortunate. Our hearts and best wishes go out to all those we left behind. We will never forget what we saw.

Tony also appeared on Larry King live on Sunday (click for transcript)

7-27-06: Tony had a chat on the Washington Post web site.

7-28-06: Tony recounts his experience on Salon.com with “Watching Beirut Die”

 

 

Click Here to listen to the Off the Broiler podcast with Tony Bourdain discussing upcoming episodes of No Reservations airing on the Discovery Travel Channel.

IMG_4901.JPG

77 Responses to No Reservations: The Shwarma and Shrapnel Episode

  1. Jane Tong (Dumpling) says:

    Dear Jason

    Please convey to him our best wishes. We are thinking of him and sending all positive energy his way. Trust he will be to safety soon.

    Thanks for letting us know.

    Jane

  2. Jaim says:

    Be safe Tony!

  3. […] Off The Broiler » Blog Archive » No Reservations: The Shwarma and Shrapnel Episode   [link] […]

  4. Andrew B says:

    I can honestly say I’ve never been this worried for someone I have never met before, only viewed on the television.

    It sounds like he and the crew have things under control (well, as under control as one may have things in that sort of situation) and I wish him and the rest all the best in getting home safe and sound.

  5. […] Tony Bourdain is trapped in Lebanon. […]

  6. […] Tony Bourdain: chef, author, inspiration for a shelved sitcom, and critic of Whole Foods, is trapped in Lebanon. He seems to be handling it well, all things. food, news world […]

  7. Chris says:

    I watch No Reservations religiously – think it the best show on TV. Knowing that Tony is in Lebanon right now makes a 3rd person battle between two nations I know no one from and will likely never visit all of a sudden a very real and frightening situation.

    Tony can be a skeptic if he likes, but I’m tossing him and his crew in the prayer mix tonight!

    Signed – a man of rural America.

  8. onecoolsoul says:

    Same thing here! I hope that everything goes well and he can get out some time soon.

  9. asoc says:

    Have enjoyed watching Tony Bourdain on TV since his handcuffed days on Food Network doing A Cook’s Tour through the current splendor that is No Reservations. Each time I watch an episode I think, “man wouldn’t it be excellent to spend a day eating and drinking and revelling in debauchary with this guy!” Despite the tough, no worries persona it has got to be a harrowing experience to be stuck in Lebanon right now. I’m sure he and the crew will get out fine, but let’s hope its sooner rather than later. G-d speed!

  10. Bill says:

    I have enjoyed watching Tony survive snow storms in Iceland, make peace with a local communist magistrate in a Vietnam village, eat and survive hot dogs in Asbury Park, NJ, kill frogs in Key West, and make friends with the mysterious and flamboyant private island owner in Vietnam, Mr. Sang. If I have learned anything about Mr. Bourdain, it isthat he survived the 80’s he is a great chef and he loves to spend the money we pay to have cable and watch his show on the Travel network, I don’t think he will have a problem surviving in Lebanon. Now that I think of it, he should stick around and solve all of the problems of the region over a few mojitos. He may be our only hope. To the crew and Tony: Be safe and Tony stay off the ATV’s.

  11. rox says:

    I hope this is all a crazy memory for him (and all of us) some day.

  12. dennisw says:

    Tony’s plight is transitory but Israelis live with Hamas and Hizbulallah on a permanent basis. Should be a great episode. I have memories of the street side falafel stand in Haifa. (I live in USA)

  13. khaledY says:

    Wow! A saucier in a war zone? reminds me of a movie I saw once. Watch your c*rnhole bud!

  14. […] UPDATE 07/15/06: Apparently Anthony Bourdain is trapped in Lebanon this week doing a taping for his Travel Channel show.  Details thanks to Off the Broiler. […]

  15. fiat lux says:

    Wow, talk about lousy timing. Glad he got out.

  16. rockwatching says:

    Yes, when you get right down to it there are many kind – good people all over. Their life circumstance puts them in opposing circumstances. So sad that they should be in conflict. Prudence would dictate a hasty retreat, no telling what kind of nightmare is about to unfold.

  17. roz and nancilyn says:

    My daughter and I love your show. She is reading one of your books. Hope to read many,many more in upcoming years, so come home safely you and your crew. We are adding you to our prayer list if you like it or not

  18. Patricia says:

    Wow! I hope you seriously get out of there safely before it gets much worse… and it will. I love your sense of humor Anthony! I was just talking to this woman at an outdoor coffee shop on Vashon Island, Wa and we were talking about you being in Lebanon. We did have some great laughs thinking about your shows, especially the one in Florida on that barge when the curtains caught on fire. Take care and be safe everyone. Get home soon and make us all laugh more and learn…

  19. Joan & Mark from Asbury Park says:

    So THAT”S why you weren’t available when we stopped in at Les Halles and asked for you! Can you get absinthe in Beirut? Please come home — we miss you!

  20. Marcus Nevacoff says:

    As one that has lived in the middle of a war zone there are only two,,,er, threepieces of advice I have.

    1.) Drink alot.
    2.) Duck!
    3.) Get the hell out of there!

  21. jan browne says:

    I am 74 years old, travel a lot and enjoy tony’s books and tv show. He will come back with some stories. I like his political views and wish him and his crew well and hope they get on the French cruise ship and make it to Cyprus…….now!!!

  22. […] Now, it’s serious. […]

  23. Dave Bellyblipboomslang says:

    The highly esteemed chef should invite the “warring factions” to lunch and, over a fat joint, get them all to chill. Rock on.

  24. […] One of my favorite personalities — foodie, writer and libertine Anthony Bourdain — gets caught in the crossfire filming an episode of “No Reservations” in Lebanon. Considering some of his culinary stunts, we think he’ll make it. [Off the Broiler] […]

  25. […] “we are currently shooting an episode of NR in Lebanon–and it should be video gold. Those kookie-krazy kids from Hezbollah were popping off their weapons today(shooting in the air, I gather)–and Israel has been bombing and mobilizing a division in the South with reported land and sea strikes… (See today’s news–and quotes from Israeli PM). While the party continues in Beirut–there’s a lot of concern that the Israelis will follow up with strikes on infrastructure (like the power grid). And we were due to head to the Bekka Valley tomorrow. BTW..this town is Party Central!” […]

  26. beth conley says:

    Get out of there Anthony!!!1

  27. Lani says:

    I’m so disapointed in so many ways that the Lebanon episode was not completed. I grew up with many lebanese friends in Africa and love shawarmas, kebehs, taboulis, etc. I remember our shawarma shop was called “Super Flesh” – which, happens when you take the French/English dictionary too literally. Tony B. is my favorite chef and the combo would’ve been spectacular. It’s so sad what is happening in Lebanon right now – the NY Times article today spoke of many children being killed and injured – it’s just not right – they are such colorful, creative, vibrant, funny, garlic-lovin people that have managed to retain all those characteristics even with their lives being torn apart by senseless violence year after year, decade after decade. Ce n’est pas juste!!! Good luck, Tony and Crew! Hopefully you’ll be able to finish the Lebanon episode some time in the near future.

  28. Basma O'Neill says:

    I am an American of Lebanese descent. My heart aches for my family still living there. It was nice to read Tony’s blog and feel a sense of pride in the people of Lebanon who still carry on and continue to be the wonderful people they are. Sadly, terrorists have managed to ruin that for Tony and his crew. Hopefully they (Hezbollah) will be gone soon and the rest of the world will have the chance to see what a wonderful country Lebanon can be and what wonderful food and friendly people exist in this part of the world.

  29. Annie says:

    Keep writing, Tony. An honest eyewitness is worth a lot.

  30. Fe says:

    I am very big fan of Anthony Bourdain’s and wish him and the NR crew our prayers for their safe return home.

    Its an amazing and terrifying time in the world, and of all the voices to come out of the chaos, its a feat to have someone as true to the hard truth as AB talking about it with as always, the heart, soul and love of a chef. As the daughter of a cook, I can feel it.

  31. c phipps says:

    Tony,check this out,love your show,very to the point and i like that. When are you gonna go to ST.KITTS thats my home town? never any bombing there. hope to meet you one day

  32. Lisa Smith-Ruvalcaba says:

    Hey Tony and NR crew –
    I can’t believe your 7/18 entry. Truly frightening. The national news reports don’t deliver the kind of jarring reality jab your piece detailed. I’m so sorry to hear of the senseless destruction caused by a fanatical minority. Lebanon is an amazing country. I applaud the Travel Channel’s faith in their host and crew by choosing Lebanon as a featured location. Who could have imagined the events over the last week?

    In the meantime, Tony and crew, stay safe. Will keep you in my thoughts and prayers and wish you all a quick trip home. Keep us posted and we’ll leave the light on for you here in Massachusetts!

  33. Kathleen Spilane says:

    Is is as bad as New Jersey?? Just kidding!! I know you guys will be safe, just hang in there and remember to hydrate..I know you will.
    I will say a prayer for you all to get out safely.

    Cheers

  34. beth says:

    all the vodka and bjasaps when you get home!!! your gonnna nneeed them!!!

  35. Shawn for Wyoming says:

    Tony-

    I imagine that you have worked lines and nights that seem like Beirut. At least you don’t have to put up with servers!!!

    We wish you and your crew well. Get out safe and bring back a good story. Peace….

  36. Caroline Hope says:

    Tony – Ever since Kitchen Confidential I caught the bug. I have read everything you have ever written and the spectrum of your thinking is outstanding – I was always hoping to come to Les Halles and have this fantasy of you being there and getting to, well, meet you, gawk maybe. Would it be outrageous of me to ask about Nancy? I am not getting a clear picture of what is going on there although it is absolutely none of mine or anyone else’d business, I have to ask. Whatever the case Tony, you have brought the Culinary World to new heights, Bravo!

    Hopelessly Devoted Fan in Boston
    Caroline

  37. inkgrrl says:

    Stay in the north part of Beirut, or better yet, head up towards Tripoli. The northern Bekaa is better too – stay away from Baalbek, obviously. I was surprised to hear they were bombing beautiful Jbeil – so maybe it’s become more random than merely the known Hezbollah hotspots. A shame. My ex’s family is still there – visiting them years ago I had the thought that the entire country looked like the body of a beautiful woman who’d been brutally raped and beaten. The Israelis were there then too. Shelling is a rude alarm clock. Keep your friends close and the absinthe closer.

  38. […] With the huge response to the Shwarma and Shrapnel post I felt that perhaps I should begin highlighting the food of Lebanon and the Mediterranean. Lebanese food is among my favorite cuisines, and in my opinion it is the best of all of the Middle Eastern nations. Even with all the bad things that are going on there, I think its important to realize that its not the Lebanese that are bad people, its a bunch of extremists that have made a bad situation much, much worse, and we shouldn’t look down on the Lebanese as a result. So I’m still going to eat Lebanese food, and I hope you do as well. […]

  39. tonys1#fan says:

    Does anyone have an update on Tony and his crew???

  40. Leigh says:

    I hope Anthony is okay. I freaking love that man!! But knowning the kind of inner strength and fortitude that a man like Tony can get from a good Mojito, I’m sure he’ll be just fine. I hope he can get his favorite cigarettes there– that could be a problem. I hope to God that at some point they show whatever they did manage to shoot there– it would be incredibly interesting for those of us trapped in our little homes with all of our conviences to see what’s really going on in that part of the world. I’ll drink a mojito in my jacuzzi tonight and think of Tony and his NR crew….

    Just in case my favorite traveller is reading this:

    I worship you, Bourdain. And cook from the Les Halles cookbook frequently– I even have those lovely burn scars on my arms that you are so fond of! Just hang in there, be safe and know you got a lot of people who are keeping you in their thoughts and prayers. I know I’ll keep you in mine. ;)

  41. Dianne_VA says:

    Travel channel reports Tony and Crew onboard the USS Nashville which has now arrived safely in Cyprus. Visit Travel Channel No reservations web site forum

  42. Lisa says:

    From Reuters:
    Broken-hearted celebrity chef evacuated from Lebanon
    20 Jul 2006 21:09:34 GMT
    Source: Reuters

    ON BOARD THE USS NASHVILLE, July 20 (Reuters) – Lying on a green army cot as a U.S. navy ship spirits him away from violence-stricken Lebanon, American television food show host Anthony Bourdain says his heart is broken.

    Bourdain, whose show “Anthony Bourdain — No Reservations” takes him around the world to experience new culture and cuisine, was shooting an episode in Beirut before the outbreak of violence that is threatening to spiral out of control.

    “We’d been hearing great things about Beirut and arrived and quickly fell in love with the country,” he told Reuters.

    “It was paradise, sort of the western dream of the way we’d all like the Middle East to be — enlightened, progressive, multi-cultural, and multi-religious.”

    But after two days of eating and drinking, the experience went sour on July 12 when he and his new Lebanese friends heard gunfire from Hizbollah militants celebrating the abduction of two Israeli soldiers.

    The capture has since led to a bloody exchange of Israeli air strikes in Lebanon and Hezbollah rocket attacks in Israel.

    At least 311 Lebanese and 29 Israelis have died in the violence. Many countries have criticised Israel’s air strikes as too severe as they have also devastated infrastructure in the Arab state, forced the evacuation of thousands of foreigners and driven tens of thousands of Lebanese from their homes.

    “I was in love for two days and had my heart broken on the third,” Bourdain said.

    On the ship’s deck the atmosphere was calm. Hundreds of families slept or huddled close on cots and in tents as children played with toys provided by the soldiers.

    But Bourdain said his efforts to leave Lebanon had not been easy, frustrated by unanswered telephone calls to the embassy and a “horror show” at a beach outside Beirut where they had gathered before U.S. Navy and marines whisked 1,052 Americans to the ship by landing craft and then on to nearby Cyprus.

    “At the checkpoints, it was like a Metallica concert gone horribly wrong,” he said. “It was a mob scene.”

    Bourdain said the rapidly escalating violence had destroyed a blossoming city that had finally begun to emerge as a vibrant, democratic cultural hotspot after a civil war and the subsequent political influence of neighbouring Syria.

    “I feel this awful sense of regret that we were never able to show Beirut as it was,” he said. “To see everyone’s hopes die and watch the country dismantled piece by piece was very painful. I’m very angry and very frustrated.”

  43. jan browne says:

    I am 74 and Tony Bourdain makes me laugh! we are due to leave for Egypt in October so hope things have cooled down somewhat by then. Good luck to Tony and his crew!!!

  44. Leigh says:

    Thank God Tony and the gang got out– I am a completely lapsed Catholic, but I said a rosary for those guys last night.

    I cannot wait to see what they filmed. Okay, maybe they didn’t get to sample yummy, tasty foods and see as much of the area that they had intended, but they experienced so much more than the average ‘eat and travel’ show. I really hope I get to see it sometime– with Anthony by the pool with a cig in one hand and a mojito in the other. I know, yes, that’s a ‘flip’ comment, but its true. Sarcasim and drinking are my two favorite coping mechanisms. Anyway, thank God they are out. I hope he gets hazard pay out of this experience….. ;)

  45. Caroline Hope says:

    Hi – can someone help me out here? I don’t have cable because I despise TV in general with the exception, of course, of Tony. (No Reservations, A Cook’s Tour Etc..) Is there any way I can get these episodes without tuning in on the exact day of the program? I am kind of hoping that they will come out with a boxed DVD set of “No Reservations” (Hey, I can hope, can’t I) I love Tony, any suggestions?

  46. […] No Reservations: The Shwarma and Shrapnel Episode […]

  47. Lynn Metcalf says:

    Be safe Tony and Crew. Just found out that you guys were on the ship to get out. Agree that this is a sad and ugly situation in the Middle East. Sometimes I think that humans will never learn from the past. Been craving the foie and a martini at Les Halles for a week, and now I know why – – NR crew and host were on my mind the entire time. Get home soon.

  48. NRG says:

    Hey Tony,
    Glad you made it home safely!
    Will you be airing any of the film you shot in Beirut? That city is/was a culinary haven and party-town for the mid east and would love to see what you experienced before the fighting began. Also wanted to say that I appreciate your nice comments on Beirut on larry King Live Sunday night. Despite the civil war and the recent events, Beiruties and the Lebanese people in general always find a way to rebuild and enjoy their rich & tolerant culture. The rest of the world needs to know that and I think NR can help with that.
    Peace.

  49. anthonymontoya says:

    Nice blog! Interesting post… Come check out my blog at anthonymontoya.wordpress.com

  50. Lisa Smith-Ruvalcaba says:

    Hello Tony and LeDroit Park, Washington, D.C.,

    Tony – so glad to hear you’re home safe and sound. Enjoyed your Washington Post posting on 7/27. Regarding LeDroit Park, Wash. D.C.’s posting asking where he should eat in Boston when you’re both in town for the ASAE conference in Boston – I have a few suggestions (I work in Boston):

    1. Brasserie Jo, 120 Huntington Ave (near the Prudential Center) – wonderful Parisian brasserie. May be on par with Les Halles? I’ve had two excellent dinners at Les Halles in Wash. D.C. – and Brasserie Jo is equal to the task. Check it out!

    2. Great Lunch spot in Downtown Crossing called ‘Chacarero’ – authentic Chilean cuisine located at 26 Province Street. Take out only. Typical weekday afternoon, line runs around the block – it’s well worth the wait. I’d recommend the Chicken Chacarero original (chicken, steamed green beans, muenster cheese, avacado spread, salt/pepper and, of course!, the secret hot sauce – all on homemade bread.) Call 617-367-1167 and order ahead of time.

    3. AMAZING Sushi – Probably can’t compare to Tony’s Masa Sushi restaurant in NYC – but in Boston, I’d recommend Fugakyu at 1280 Beacon St in Brookline. Amazing – the best in Boston. Always busy. Call 617-734-1268.

    I could go on. There are SO many amazing places to eat in Boston – depending on what you’re looking for and where you’d like to go. You can always visit http://www.boston.citysearch.com for more choices – to take my word for it and visit what I’ve suggested above. All are a short cab ride from the ASAE venue at the TD BankNorth center (formerly known as the Fleet center.. formerly known as…)

    Enjoy,
    Lisa Smith-Ruvalcaba

  51. John Eames says:

    I have just rediscovered Tony on Travel Channel…..Thank you!!! I had no idea that he had moved to TC as I just thought the whole world was wrong and had not renewed his show…. my only problem is that I am watching reruns of season 2 and have missed most early episodes already… it appears that there are very few episodes on ON DEMAND or iPOD, so what is a boy to do to see the rest of season2? Please tell me that TC will run through all season 2 episodes a 3rd time or release season 2 as a DVD set….

    I am hoping…..

  52. Chrissy C says:

    Hey- Just wanted to say I’m glad to see that Tony and the crew are back safe. The food world would be way too fluffy and pink without him. I really enjoyed him commentary from the Nashville. The miltary gets way too little credit for being the human beings they really are. So thank you Tony! Keep eating, drinking, and making foodies like myself dream about what’s beyond the pink fluff.
    Chrissy, CT

  53. Omarr says:

    Bourdain is the man. He introduces us to other countries and cultures like no one else does. Rachael Ray WHO? He is a free-spirited man who actually knows how to think; plus he speaks and writes extremely well, and evidently enjoys his work as much as we enjoy watching the results. I personally loathe the idiot-box – yet somehow, every episode this crazed intoxicant-savvy harbinger throws together, never fails to wholly captivate.

  54. Amber Berglund says:

    Aleksander Wojtkiewicz Died on July 14. He was my life. I miss him terribly. The whole world is falling apart.

  55. Cal says:

    Bourdain is a traitor to the US, supporting the breakdown of the US borders and destruction of our culture at the hands of racist hateful invaders. He even goes as far as saying “viva la raza” in his Travel Channel show. You need to know how serious this is. Bourdain is a danger to every US citizen whether you see that now or not – you will see it in the future when he’s support for a foreign invading country matures. Bourdain’s treason is not questionable, what I do question is his motives and source of anti-American hate.

  56. Isabel Rodrigo says:

    I am in complete agreement with Cal. Bourdain is clueless of what is happening in the Middle East. Our President is doing a fantastic job in making sure Bourdain and the rest of us, have a home to go to at the end of the day. As a foreigner, I’m proud to live in America and proud to be American.

  57. J Tatzen says:

    according to ahmadinejad & cheney’s friend bernard lewis, the world is ending sometime today, so, i’ll hurry up & express great appreciation for the beirut show. love my navy boys! love my marines!

    and, yes, yes, ISABEL RODRIGO, g-dubya is YOUR president.

  58. Jenn Vix says:

    I was quite speechless after watching tonight’s episode. I’m so glad you guys got out of there alive. I really understand the sadness you felt watching it all crumble.

    Regards,
    J.V.

  59. J. Trussell says:

    I just watched the “Bourdain in Beirut” show last night but was aware of the circumstances from the promos. I’m glad Tony and crew got to visit Le Chef and the Sky bar but all of Beirut was missed and hopefully left for another show.
    My wife and I lived and worked in Lebanon for 16 mos. in 1999-2000. We were fish out of water at first but learned to love and respect the country and the people. The food was incredible and we still cook and eat Lebanese dishes at home. The people were great. In my work I had 6 Lebanese nationals as supervisors on the project. One Maronite christian, one Druze, one Armenian E. Orthodox, two Shi’ites, and a Palestinian Sunni. They were a great bunch of guys and helped both my wife and I become comfortable and happy in Beirut. They all wanted what we want. To work and make a living to provide better for thier families. To get thier children a better education than they had. There are three standing rules in Beiruti society. 1) Don’t discuss religion. 2) Don’t discuss politics. 3) Don’t bother talking about the civil war (it was horrible for everyone and everyone has the same horrible stories). We loved our time there and were planning to go back on vacation this spring and still may if everything settles a little. The Israelis bombed twice while we lived there but obviously not to the degree that occurred recently.
    The show broke my f*@!king heart. Just the look on Joe’s face when the shooting started told it all. I have seen that look before. Tony, you and the crew got gipped out of one of the most diverse, beautiful, historic, tolerant, and culinarily complete countries in the world. I can tell from that you sensed it just by the experience of one day with the Beirutis when not under attack. Please go back when it’s feasible. It may be your best show.
    Looks like when the boat did finally arrive that the Marines and Sailors took good care of everyone. Hats off to those guys.

  60. AEM says:

    As you can see from the above comments, Cal’s hateful ignorance is the exception to the norm. We love and appreciate your candor, honesty and entertaining shows Tony. Keep up the great work, and thank you.

  61. AEM says:

    As you can see from the above comments, Cal’s hateful ignorance is the exception to the norm. We love and appreciate your candor, impartiality and entertaining shows Tony. Keep up the great work, and thank you.

  62. gina says:

    Absolutely love your show! Looking forward to the new line-up in January 2007. I can’t wait to come to New York to check out your restaurant. Keep up the great work. Also, bought your book; Kitchen Confidential. I couldn’t put it down. Great book.

  63. Julie says:

    I love your books and your adventurous show and I highly respect your brutal honesty. I find it refreshing in todays crazy world. Tony, you are young at heart and an inspiration to many!

    Thank You & Regards,
    Julie

  64. russian woman dating

    cccaiufyc vkeimxdl xafwlnxvg

  65. rikki says:

    I NEED DESPERATLy TO SPEAK TO YOU! ASAP! PLEASE!!!

  66. we love the article you wrote that was seen today on MSN covering BBQ. Visit our social commuity at smokinaphattie.com

    Keep on Q’ng.

  67. Azzurra says:

    Buon luogo, congratulazioni, il mio amico!

  68. Mak says:

    Let me preface this comment by saying that Tony is something of a hero to me. I love his books, I love his shows, and almost always appreciate and agree with his point of view.

    I think though that Tony got it all a bit wrong in Beirut though, which is entirely understandable based upon his own very limited experiences in the Country, which led him to jump to conclusions based upon a very narrow breadth of understanding.

    Repeated throughout the entire episode, and all of the interviews thereafter, is this concept of the “tolerance” of Lebanese society, and the “live and let live” attitude that he thinks prevails there. Firstly, I don’t think that this view takes into account that whatever “tolerance” there is in Lebanon today, is the result of one side being entirely outgunned and subservient to the other. More importantly though, to me, this observation of supposed Beiruti tolerance is a bit like a comentator travelling to post-Nazi Germany immediately after World War II and observing how tolerant of other cultures the population is. Of course, both societies would seem to be tolerant at these points in time, because they have already wiped out all of the people and cultures with whom they were previously unable to tolerate.

    On this one point , I would like to let Tony know, that his perceptions of tolerance are simply incorrect. One need only ask any Lebanese Jew whether they feel welcome in Beirut today. Unfortunately, that conversation will probably need to take place in Brooklyn, Sao Paulo, Paris, Tel Aviv, etc., because although the Jews have a history in Lebanon going back as far as recorded history extends, they have been entirely purged from Lebanese society through either murder or expulsion. Contrary to Tony’s perception of cultural and religous tolerance in Lebanese society today, these folks are not welcome to return to their lives in Lebanon, and remain in forced exile.

    Through no fault of his own, Tony’s commentary is limited by his perspective, which itself was dictate by the very limited time he had in the Country. I hope though that in the fullness of time, he comes to understand that his experiences in Lebanon — and indeed Lebanon itself — is a much more complex subject, with problems the roots of which come from within — and not outside — of its borders. Perpetuating the myth of Lebanese “tolerance” does not further this understanding.

  69. […] No Reservations: Shwarma & Shrapnel Off the Broiler blog provides complete (?) timeline of Bourdain’s time in (and getting out of) Lebanon during July’s war. (tags: bourdain cooking food Lebanon) […]

  70. Wise says:

    Keep writing, Tony. An honest eyewitness is worth a lot.

  71. Mike says:

    Stay safe, Tony!

  72. […] Off The Broiler: The Shwarma and Shrapnel Episode Super Chef: Anthony Bourdain’s Nasty Bits And the man himself: Anthony Bourdain Blogging over at Bravo […]

  73. Jennifer says:

    I continue to be devastated by the “war”–events of July 2006 in Lebanon. As I travelled from the US w/ my 3 sons to see my in-laws we were filled with much anticipation and excitement. About 1 month into our trip our carefree way of life became unsettled. My 3 sons and I were blessedly evacuated home over the course of 3 days. I will neer forget and always be indebted to our great country, its government for our safe return and my fellow Americans for their kindness and gracious offerings. Flash forward to Christmas night 2006 and I see the No Reservations episode of Beruit. I am directly brought back to those anxious days and nights, only to be filled with anger that Anthony Bourdain and crew”got out” well before everyday citizens?? I will never be able to forget the fear that myself and my boys felt everyday my husband and family in the states wondering, close calls several times…It seems like adding insult to injury that there is an actual episode to recount all this …

  74. Tom and Maria Brown says:

    Thank you, thank you, thank you.
    Your show is always a favorite, with intimate views from around our world, but the Lebanon episode we just saw was among the best television shows I have ever seen! (and I mean that). If it were not for the Byzantine web links I have fought through, I would have thanked you during “half time” while the show was still airing. Not much food, but you stayed true to your art and showed us a culture. This is among the most powerful view of the idiotic shelling of a good people that I have seen, particularly of this injustice meted on the people of Lebanon. I appreciate your reference to the indifference of America’s president, as he tried to act as casual as possible during the crisis, as if to indicate that he was not involved in planning this disaster. This was important and engaging television. I hope someday we can share a meal. I truly like you and your crew. Please feel free to hand this note to the networks airing your show.

    Love.
    Tom and Maria Brown.

  75. […] No Reservations: The Shwarma and Shrapnel Episode […]

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 221 other followers

%d bloggers like this: