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Remembering Anthony Bourdain: Life, Legacy, and the Demons that He Dealt With. Aired 10-11p ET

Aired June 8, 2018 - 22:00   ET



CHRIS CUOMO, CNN HOST: So, reach out. Don't wonder what's going on with someone, ask them. We are all in this together and we need to show it. If you do, it can literally be a life saver.

I'm Chris Cuomo. Thank you so much for being with me this week. Please stay tuned now for a special CNN contribute remembering Anthony Bourdain.

CHRISTIANE AMANPOUR, CNN HOST: I think everybody who listens to the "PARTS UNKNOWN" is suddenly like a Pavlovian syndrome really electrified and prepared through that sounds through that music for something really different on television.

CUOMO: Tony was an original, that's very rare. And not only did he have a cool existence but he had his own theme which was a huge thing. And he sang in the song. It was just such an after affirmation of what he was all about. The organic nature, the originality, cutting his own path.

JOHN BERMAN, CNN HOST: I was in my office, it was about 4.45 a.m., I was getting ready for New Day which goes on the air at 6 o'clock. I had my back to the door and I heard my door shut. I turned around and my boss, Jeff Zucker was standing there, looking passionate, and he says, I have to tell you something, no one else knows but we're going to have to report this. Anthony Bourdain is dead. I was shocked. I think I actually screamed, no.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is CNN breaking news.

BERMAN: We have some terribly sad news to report this morning, heartbreaking and devastating.

BRIAN STELTER, CNN SENIOR MEDIA CORRESPONDENT: Once we were sure all of us gotten the numbers had been notified that's when we went on the air with the news.

BERMAN: World renowned chef, bestselling author, award winning host of "PARTS UNKNOWN" and our friend, Anthony Bourdain has died.

STELTER: Anthony was found dead this morning in his hotel room in France. He had hung himself in his hotel room.

POPPY HARLOW, CNN HOST: The idea that he was suffering somehow is really heartbreaking.

ANDERSON COOPER, CNN HOST: Honestly, it hurt to even talking about him in the past tense at this point, it's a, it's really -- yes, it's really hard to -- hard to imagine. I mean, you never know what goes on in anybody's head and you never really know what goes on anyone's heart.

But certainly, you know, the pain he must have been feeling, at least in that moment or in those moments, and the loneliness he must be feeling it's just terribly sad to think about. And makes me very sad for him to have -- to have succumbed to that.

AMANPOUR: Somebody as vital, as passionate, as alive, as warm as human as Tony Bourdain, I could not imagine, a, that he was gone, and b, that he was gone in this manner. That he took his own life at this time in our history. It's left a massive hole in, I think our world.

COOPER: I lost a brother to suicide, so, I know the shock that people feel, I mean, the shock that loved ones feel. And it's something that I have thought about for 30 years and I don't have any answers about why somebody does it.

STELTER: Anthony's life changed in 1999, that's when he wrote his famous article for the New Yorker. "Don't eat before reading this." He was letting us all inside the kitchen, revealing the secrets of the chef world of the restaurant world. And it quickly became a book, "Kitchen Confidential." Now that came in 2000 but we're still talking about it 18 years later and that's what led to the food network to Discovery Channel and to CNN.


ANTHONY BOURDAIN, FORMER CNN HOST: This is a world of fresh, delicious, spicy, meaty, salty, sour, sweet dinner.


STELTER: "PARTS UNKNOWN" started on CNN in 2013 and it was like a bolt of lightning.


BOURDAIN: The most vital thing giver of life, sticky rice.


DON LEMON, CNN HOST: I said, Anthony Bourdain on CNN, what the hell is that about, right. I didn't quite get it at first. I was like, we don't do, that's not what CNN does. And then he did it, and I got it. And then I said this is guy is genius. He's brilliant.


BOURDAIN: Now what's the famous greeting, is it have you eaten or have you had rice?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's both. Literally it means have you eaten rice yet, but what it really means is, how's it going.


[22:04:58] LEMON: I thought that he was a better journalist than many of us ever could be. Because it came to him naturally. It was just curiosity. And, isn't that really what being a journalist is all about, being curious?

AMANPOUR: When he brought "PARTS UNKNOWN" to CNN and I interviewed him about what his mission was. He basically says, I want to go to familiar and less familiar places to tell the American people about all these places but through the medium that they'll be able to relate to. So, food. Everyone can relate to food, right? So he was also telling about culture and politics, and history, and the geography, but through food.


BOURDAIN: Welcome to Shanghai province. Top up near the borders of Burma, China, Laos, and India not too far away. All of them have left their mark on the food.


KATE BOLDUAN, CNN ANCHOR: That episode that I love was his episode about Pittsburgh, just because he's saying, Anthony Bourdain "PARTS UNKNOWN" travels the world. And he's going to Pittsburg, right?


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Jim, Uncle Jim, this is Anthony Bourdain.

BOURDAIN: How do you do?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: One hundred three years old, 103 years old.

BOURDAIN: Looking good.


BOLDUAN: But he's awesome. He talks about social issues, the boom and bust of industry and how automation has left cities behind.


BOURDAIN: The money is definitely coming in. Is it lifting all the boats?



BOLDUAN: I mean, so the episode in talking about the reemerging food scene in Pittsburgh was little about the food and more about society and people, and people down on their luck and how they fight their way back up. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BOURDAIN: What did you decide to say?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I wanted to cook.


BOLDUAN: And the economy then that leads to government policy and everything in between.


BOURDAIN: A lot of people in this country are angry, they feel that their anger is not being acknowledged in any way, and frankly, I think they're right.


BOLDUAN: And, that's all encompassed and just an episode of "PARTS UNKNOWN". It's a rare talent to be able to put it all together.

BERMAN: For me, the word that best describes Tony is passion. He just felt so much passion for what he did and what he saw. I don't think he ever had no opinion on something. It wasn't like, whatever.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (Inaudible) bridge is about an institution.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: All right, gentlemen, cheers to the queen.

BOURDAIN: I think that was the darkest scene, man.


COOPER: He was actually as you see on television. You know, he was funny, he was sarcastic, he had a dark sense of humor. He loved nothing more than if you went out to meals with him, or if I went out to meals with him he enjoyed getting me to eat bizarre foods that I would never in a million years eat because I have a (Inaudible) of a 5-year-old..


COOPER: This is tripe.

BOURDAIN: What is tripe?

COOPER: tripe is one of those words that I know means something else--


BOURDAIN: It means good. It means good.

COOPER: Is it like brains or the penis of a shark or a?

BOURDAIN: No, no not that good. It's the stomach lining of the cow.


COOPER: He loved cinema, he loved the music, and all of that was incorporated in these travel journeys that he would produce. I actually end up taking trips to places he had been because I want -- I went to Tandoori after he had done an episode in Tandoori because I thought, wow that was interesting, I wanted to see what he saw.

CUOMO: One day, Tony and I were sitting off stage waiting for a segment to happen. And he looked at me and he said, so, what are you about, what is your passion?

CUOMO: And I said, fighting. I love to fight. And his eyes -- I remember he had these hooded eyes -- and it went like this, and he had recently found BJJ, a Brazilian Jiu-jitsu. And he loved it, he loved it so much.


BOURDAIN: Every morning, every morning at 7 a.m. I'm here. And for the next hour or two hours or sometimes more, I'm just getting crushed.


CUOMO: The most recent conversation I had with him was not too long ago. He had said, you know what I love about it, the struggle. I love the struggle. I love trying to figure out how to get out of this and what to do next. And that struggle, no matter how much you think that's it, I'm going to have to tap out, I find a way out of it, I love it.

[22:10:05] STELTER: Anthony earned practically every award you can earn in the TV industry. Five Emmy awards just for "PARTS UNKNOWN". Dozens of other nominations. The Peabody in 2013 one of the most prestigious awards in television was presented on his first year on CNN.


BOURDAIN: We asked specific questions, what makes you happy what do you eat, what do you like to cook. And everywhere in the world we go and ask these very simple questions we tend to get some really astonishing answers.


STELTER: I've been getting e-mails from viewers all day saying, they feel like they've lost a friend, because they felt that connection with him through the television. BOLDUAN: Whenever we've tape I would always like yell back at him, in

my next life I'm coming back as Anthony Bourdain. And he'd look at me and be like, OK, good luck with that one.

But I think that's why -- that is not unique to me, right, everybody wanted to be a little bit of Anthony Bourdain. You know, over liquored overfed, traveling the world, having fun, connecting with people and getting paid to do it.


BOURDAIN: Enchanted land of my childhood. A cultural Petri dish from which regularly issues for greatness. New Jersey in case you didn't know it, has got beaches, beautiful beaches. And they're not all crawling with void raging trolls with reality shows. I grew up summering on these beaches and they are awesome.


ERIN BURNETT, CNN ANCHOR: You know, he just was a regular person, you know, in his regular jeans, in his regular shirt. He had no pretension, he had no interest in pretension, and it was one of the most compelling and endearing things about him.

ALISYN CAMEROTA, CNN ANCHOR: He was somebody who was actually introverted and just happened to have this very public job of being on television and being in the public eye.

JAKE TAPPER, CNN ANCHOR: It was interesting, because he was such a dichotomy. He was, you know, this swash buckling larger than life character who was very good looking, you know, women loved and men wanted to be, and -- and yet he was always kind of -- to me, it always seemed like -- even though he was very confident or seemed very confident, he was always I think -- he was always kind of just winking at it all. That there was, he was kind of all in on the joke, that it didn't really mean anything, that we're all humble, we're all fragile.


BOURDAIN: Jersey's got farmland, beautiful communities, that woman from Real Housewives who looks like Dr. Zeus does not live, there were anyone like her. Even the refineries, the endless clover leaves of turnpikes and expressways twisting in unknowable patters over the wetlands, to me, somehow beautiful. To know Jersey is to love her.


CAMEROTA: You know, I'm a Jersey girl, so I watch that had with rapt attention of what he was going to bring to life in New Jersey from his hometown.

TAPPER: He had humble beginnings, he came from the Jersey shore. But I think it was also the fact that he had such a rough life in his 20s, and you know, in retrospect was amazed that he had survived his 20s that he didn't die then. That I think must have gotten him in touch with humanity of not just himself but of everyone. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BOURDAIN: There's nothing like the North Atlantic. It's majestic. Yes, I love the beach. Pretty much had my first everything on the beach. You name it, first time I did it, beach. I was miserable in love, happy in love ultimately, as only a 17-year-old could be. This is where I lived, very happy summer in the early '70s.


BERMAN: He drops out of Vassar, he goes to the culinary institute. He had such vivid stories about working in these kitchens in Provincetown.


BOURDAIN: It was here all the way out at the tip Cape Cod Provincetown, Massachusetts where the pilgrims first landed. And it was where I first landed, 1972 washed into town with a head full of orange sunshine and a few friends. Provincetown, a wonderland of tolerance, long time tradition of accepting artists, writer, the badly behaved, gay, the different. It was paradise.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We all did drugs, acted young and crazy. And Tony he was probably wild and some not as wild as others.

WOLF BLITZER, CNN ANCHOR: He was willing to show us all sides of his amazing life, the good, the bad and the ugly. We learn from him in the process.

AMANPOUR: Tony came raw to the picture. He came with his history of his own demons. He didn't hide that he had these terrible problems with alcohol, with heroin, and yet, that's what made him so relatable.

[22:15:04] BERMAN: Tony always owned his struggles and one of them was drugs and heroin which was something that largely it was a 1980s thing for him and he worked through.


BOURDAIN: I know what the life of somebody who wakes up in the morning and their first odd of business is get heroin. Having been through it myself, you know, going to a meeting of addicts. You know, I -- they had something to say to me and I had something to say to them.


COOPER: There was a vulnerability to him, I mean, as cool as he was, there was a vulnerability to him that he would -- he would expose.


BOURDAIN: I'll tell you something really shameful of myself. The first time I shout out I looked at myself in the mirror with a big grin. You know, something was missing in me, whether it was a self- image situation, whether it was a character flaw.

You know, that stable family in the suburbs, you know, I had a lot of advantages. There was some dark Genie inside me that I really much hesitate to call a disease that led me to dope, you know, I didn't have anyone else who could have talked me out of what I was doing. Intervention wouldn't have worked. I didn't have a child. I have a 7- year-old daughter now, who I never would have had, I never would have thought.

I looked in the mirror, and I saw somebody worth saving, or that I wanted to at least try real hard and save. You know, anybody could find themselves very easily in this situation. And, you know I look back and I think about, you know, I think about what I'll tell my daughter. You know, that was daddy. No doubt about it that I hope I'll be able to say that was daddy then and this is daddy now, that I'm alive, and living and healthy. I think--



AMANPOUR: He brought to CNN something that very few others had brought and that was a sense of knowing who he was, of not being afraid of saying who he was. Of not being afraid to relate his foldable (Ph) his weaknesses as well as his strengths and his unique ability to tell stories. He brought all that to people.

STELTER: He was really exploring the human condition. He was really talking about what it means to be human and what we all share all around the world. Obviously, we all share a need to eat, but he was going so much further talking about what we all have in common and what connects us.


BOURDAIN: I come to a fact that in an earlier life, you know, I'm probably responsible for one dead Colombian, you know, due to my lifestyle in the '80s that there was a real effect on the ground.

BROOKE BALDWIN, CNN ANCHOR: How does that deal with you?

BOURDAIN: I question the drug -- I came back from it questioning the usefulness of the drug war.


BALDWIN: And I asked him about his own -- his own life and his own drug use, which he's talked about, he's been so candid about it for years. I almost caught him off guard. I just remember his response was something to the effect of, he wondered if his own drug use from years ago, really heavy drug use contributed to the death of someone in the drug trade in Colombia or beyond. And he was so serious about it.

I don't want to say it almost felt like it still haunted him but it was something he was aware of as one of his past demons.


BOURDAIN: My drug addiction I hope, it's not the most interesting part of my life. In fact, I don't find it particularly interesting at all. But there it is. It is part of my life, it changed me and it allowed me to, I think better understand some things about life, about myself and what I'm capable of doing, and it's given me a certain, on one end, empathy for some people, and a complete lack of empathy for others. That's something I felt I should talk about.

I see this particular moment as a clear example of how we might change our drug policies, and I thought you should know why it matters to me. It's that simple.


CAMEROTA: I think he did everybody a real service by talking about his own addiction and how much he struggled with heroin and cocaine. I think that again, the more that we can talk about these really hard subjects the more it removes the stigma.

And to know that he had overcome those things I think is inspirational. I think it gives everybody hope, you know, to know they can overcome something really hard.

[22:19:57] And that is why the pain of this, I think is doubly compounded, because he had overcome, it seemed, some demons in the past. And I guess that doesn't make you bullet proof.

BLITZER: You know, I didn't know him well enough to know -- but to know if he was still haunted by it but I'm sure it never leaves you. When you go through that kind of experience it's always going to be there. You fight it, you deal with it, you move on. And I always thought he did an amazing job in moving on. And in the process, helping all of us move on.

AMANPOUR: He was so real and so authentic, and in the end, maybe he was too real for his own self. I think the real thing to know about Tony Bourdain was that he was a deeply, deeply human being, he was a giant talent, he was a unique voice but he was deeply human.


AMANPOUR: When people came to sit down to watch "PARTS UNKNOWN" they knew they were going to get something different even it was about a place they knew, even if it wasn't a part unknown to them.

LEMON: His stories weren't about food. Food was a conduit. It was a thing that drew you in. And once you were drawn in it was about the experience, it was about the connection, it was about his interaction -- his interactions with people.

[22:24:58] TAPPER: It was the Obama White House who reached out to CNN, and I put them in touch with Bourdain. They wanted -- I mean, that's who Anthony Bourdain was, Obama wanted to go have food with him, not really the other way around.

BURNETT: Anthony's point of view is basically, you know, I don't want some fancy state dinner, I don't want -- yo know, it's got to be the scooter and the whole thing. And he got it his way.



BOURDAIN: Good to see you. Mr. President, how you like in Vietnam?

OBAMA: I love it.


BURNETT: And Anthony sat for him, while the secret service were, you know, apparently very cool, they were freaking out because they couldn't taste test the food they couldn't do anything, but Obama had no problem coming in and eating the local food and having a beer.


BOURDAIN: I love when you get to sneak out for a beer.

OBAMA: Very rarely. First of all, I don't get to sneak out, period, but once in a while, I'll take Michelle out on a date night. The problem is, part of enjoying a restaurant is sitting with other patrons and enjoying the atmosphere, and too often we end up getting shut into one of those private rooms.

BOURDAIN: Well, I'm glad I could help and--


OBAMA: Absolutely.


BERMAN: Tony asked the president, do you ever just get to sort of do this? To sit down and chill and have a beer? Which was a great question to ask.


BOURDAIN: We want to point player, we seemed to be turning endless. I mean, we're actually talking about building a wall around our country, and yet you have been reaching out to people who don't necessarily agree with this.

Gaza, Iran, Cuba, I mean, I just wish that more Americans had passports. You can see how other people live, seems useful at worse and incredibly pleasurable and interesting at best.

OBAMA: It confirms the basic truth that people everywhere are pretty much the same, the same hopes and dreams. When you come to people like Vietnam and you see former American-Vietnam vets coming back. When you see somebody like a John Kerry or John McCain, two very

different people politically and temperamentally but -- who were able to bond in their experience of meeting with their former adversaries and you don't make peace with your friends, you make peace with your enemies.

BOURDAIN: As the father of a young girl, is it all going to be OK, is it all going to wake up, my daughter will be able to come here in five years, 10 years should be able to have a bowl of bun cha and the world would be a better place?

OBAMA: Yes. I mean, I think progress is not a straight line. You know, there are going to be moments at any given part of the world where things are terrible. But, having said all that, I think they are going to work out.

BOURDAIN: Thank you so much. Cheers.

OBAMA: Cheers.


BERMAN: There isn't a lot of chefs who get to sit down and interview the President of the United States. But the reason I think that President Obama wanted to sit down with Tony in Vietnam had nothing to do with the food, it was the talk, again, about life.

COOPER: Anthony interviewed a guy Boris Nemtsov in an episode he did in Russia and who was a critic of the regime.

TAPPER: He was really good at picking people who were in the crosshairs of bad guys.


BOURDAIN: So, we were supposed to be dining at another restaurant this evening, and when they heard you would be joining me, we were uninvited. Should I be concerned about having dinner with you?

BORIS NEMTSOV, FORMER RUSSIAN DEPUTY PRIME MINISTER: This is a country of corruption. And if you have business you are in a very unsafe situation. Everybody can press you and destroy your business. That's it. This is a system.

BOURDAIN: Meet Boris Nemtsov, he was a deputy prime minister under Yeltsin, and today he's one of Putin's most vocal critics.

This restaurant was kind enough to take us in. But the chef is a Britt so maybe he has less reason to worry.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: First course, gentlemen.

BOURDAIN: Critics of the government, critics of Putin, bad things seem to happen to them. Litvinenko case, a known enemy of Putin, speaking with the radioactive polonium, are you concerned?

NEMTSOV: Me, about myself?

BOURDAIN: Yes. You were a pain in the ass.

NEMTSOV: Tony, I was born here 54 years ago, this is my country. Russian people are in a bit of trouble, Russian (Inaudible), the Russian education decline every year, I believe that Russia has a chance to be free. There is a chance. It's difficult but we must do.


COOPER: And Nemtsov ended up getting assassinated shortly -- shortly after. So, you know, he, Anthony was not shying away in any way from serious political issues in the place. I mean, he embraced all those things.

[22:30:00] TAPPER: The idea that Bourdain would have met with Boris Nemtsov in Russia before Nemtsov was killed, that's what Bourdain was doing, he was looking to tell stories of humanity and oppression.

BALDWIN: I remember asking Tony Bourdain what would be the buck list location to a guy whose been around the world five times, and he said Iran. And then Low and behold several seasons later, there he was.

BLITZER: He was interviewing the Washington Post reporter at the time, Jason Rezaian and his wife.


BOURDAIN: The official attitude towards fun in general seems to be ever shifting, is it even a good idea?

JASON REZAIAN, TEHRAN BUREAU CHIEF, THE WASHINGTON POST: There's a lot of security, lots of rules, there are a lot of people in place to make sure you do the right thing, and not do the wrong thing. But a lot of push and pull, lot of give and take.

BOURDAIN: Do you like it -- are you happy here?

REZAIANL: Look, I'm in a point now after five years where I miss certain things about home. I miss my buddies, I miss burritos, I miss having certain beverages with my buddies and burritos at certain type of establishments. But I love it. I love it, and I hate it, you know? It's home. It's become home.

BOURDAIN: Are you optimistic about the future?

YEGANEH SALEHI, JASON REZAIAN'S WIFE: Yes, especially if there's no clear, then it finally happens, yes. Very much actually.


ANDERSON COOPER, CNN ANCHOR: Shortly after, Jason was arrested by the regime and held. And I remember interviewing Anthony actually about Jason. And, you know, Anthony was trying to speak out forcefully on Jason's behalf.


BOURDAIN: These are two lovely blameless people who are not deserving of this -- of this faith.


COOPER: It was interesting to see Anthony often winding up kind of in the epicenter of, you know, serious political situations.

BLITZER: And I also loved the episode where he went to Jerusalem, went to Israel, met with Palestinians, met with the Israelis, and brought us a unique point of that -- that situation. That was very powerful.

DON LEMON, CNN ANCHOR: Any story that we sit on television, and argue about, and have these heated discussions about, all you have to do is interject some food and wine, or whatever into it, and a table it, and it becomes much more civilized.



YOTAM OTTOLENGHI, CHEF/AUTHOR: And the apricots. The little sweet apricots we had.

BOURDAIN: It's really intensely delicious. Are you hopeful?

BARANES: Of course. I have my children. I need to see them.

BARHUM: I respect her religion. She respects my religion and my family. And together we can build something for our kids, our future country. That's what we think, and that's what we give the message for our customers.

OTTOLENGHI: Part of the attraction of this restaurant, the fact that it actually manages to do what not so many chefs try to do here, and that is sort of mix your Jewish ethnicity, or background with Arab food.


LEMON: What he did, even better than people who went to school for journalism, was that he educated you, and he took you on a journey with him, and we all went along for the ride.



BOURDAIN: What do I do? Every show, I'm not going to say it's a formula, but the basic structure is guy go someplace, eat a bunch of food, and comes back, OK? That's what I do every time. This is not a food show, but there's food. This is not a travel show, but there's travel. I don't know what it is.


BRIAN STELTER, CNN HOST: Anthony used food, it was a -- it was a way to start a conversation. But his show, his life, he was really exploring the human condition.


BOURDAIN: It's a food show, right? Well, not really. Assume it was like a concept in a lot of ways. If you look at the mix of people, ethnicities, and religions, all will be relatively at close quarters here, it's a rather extraordinary success story.

Let me try some of the octopus. The octopus is chewy, but tasty. It's too spicy for you man. Yes, believe me. Only one of us are going to be shitting like a maniac tonight. It's not going to be you.

[22:40:09] It's just -- I mean, this is as sophisticated and complex a bowl of food as any French restaurant. I mean it really is the -- just the top of the mountain. I'm getting down to, like, the pepper residue at the bottom.

Nice burning feeling aver my lips, flop sweat. Happy. So, we can pretty much cancel the rest of the show. I've achieved the -- my happy zone. It's really all downhill from here.


LEMON: Any story that we sit on television, and argue about, and have these heated discussions about, all you have to do is interject some food, and wine, or whatever into it, and a table, and it becomes much more civilized.


BOURDAIN: Korea, land of enchantment, land of contrast, land of drinking a lot.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: If you're really Korean, you can drink well, and recover.

BOURDAIN: Well, we're going to find out, aren't we?


BOURDAIN: I do not love myself this morning. Dried squid, M&Ms, and mixing your alcohols?


BOURDAIN: Problem for me is I'm generally older than everybody in this country. My glass is always full. You agree this is pretty awesome!


COOPER: If you went outside meals with him, or if I went out to meals with him he enjoyed getting me to eat bizarre foods I would never in 1 million years eat, because I have the palette of a 5-year-old.



COOPER: What is tripe? A tripe is that one of those words that I know means something else that happen, that I don't want to eat.

BOURDAIN: It means good. It means good.

COOPER: Is it something like the brains or like the penis of a shark, or...

BOURDAIN: No. No. No. Not that good. It's the stomach lining of the cow.

COOPER: Of the cow?


COOPER: You know, there's plenty of stuff on a cow to eat, why do you need to eat the stomach lining?

BOURDAIN: Because you got to work for the good stuff.


BOURDAIN: When you cook it, it smells like wet dog. Do you ever...

COOPER: I love the smell of my wet dog.

BOURDAIN: You ever stood in an elevator with a golden retriever? It has got that same kind of funk.


COOPER: He once came and cook at my home, it's the only time my kitchen was actually been used. We ended up -- or I should say we, he ended up cooking. I think it was some cuisine from South Korea in particular.


COOPER: So, we've got pork, you've got hot dogs, and now you are adding spam.

BOURDAIN: Oh, wait.


BOURDAIN: Kim chi. Oh yeah.

COOPER: I can honestly say this is the last thing in the world I want to eat.

BOURDAIN: You say that now. But just wait. COOPER: All right.


COOPER: So this looks great. I have got to say. It is very good.

BOURDAIN: See, I've done good -- I've done good in this world.


TAPPER: I know people loved him because of the food and drink, but like, there are also a lot of us who are like, that was almost beside the point. It really was just about him, and his way of looking at the world.


BOURDAIN: I come out of 30 years of preparing food for other people in a restaurant situation. Most of those places had tablecloths. And I enjoy from time to time, of course, very much eating in fancy restaurants. That said, I'm happier experiencing food in a purely emotional way.


ERIN BURNETT, CNN ANCHOR: I loved, you know, watching him go into, you know, a restaurant or a home, and just sort of becoming accepted in the process.


BOURDAIN: We're here for a supra at the home of Ushangi and Makvala Kokashvili. A supra is like a feast, super traditional. A pig is dispatched and broken into constituent parts. The neighbors pitch in, helping to make three different varieties of a traditional cheese- filled bread, known as khachapuri.

While I'm always interested in what's cooking, I'm much more interested these days in whose cooking, why they're cooking, what they're cooking, and what they have to say.


BURNETT: One of the scenes that I remember was in Sicily when they were going to be making some kind of octopus. And basically, these fishermen said, OK, we're going to take you out, and you're going to go out, and get to catch your own.



BOURDAIN: But I am famous for my optimism. Suddenly, there's a dead sea creature sinking slowly to the seabed in front of me. Are they kidding me? I'm thinking can this be happening? But it goes on, one dead cuttlefish, deceased octopus, frozen sea

urchin after another, drops among the rocks, or along the sea floor to be heroically discovered by Turin moments later.

[22:45:04] And proudly shown off to camera, like I'm not actually watching as this confederate in the next boat over hurls them into the water one after another. And the minute I -- you know, that octopus -- that dead octopus started hitting the water around me, my sense of rage.


BURNETT: It showed how passionate he was. He wasn't -- he wasn't always abut being affable and genial. He know that he truly had this passion, and this care, and in that particular moment it was very clear to me.


BOURDAIN: And just when my brain threatens to short circuit with pleasure, descending as if from heaven, itself -- cheese. Oh, god, the cheese.

I've got to tell you, I don't care how many naked breasts are on that beach right now, because that is much more exciting. All right. Look at it. It's beautiful.


BLITZER: He was a great chef, but then he had this unique ability to obviously eat very, you know, obscure remote, different kinds of food, but he also liked all the foods that all of us loved. He could have a hotdog, and speak about that for half an hour.


BOURDAIN: As I've gotten older I'm moving more and more away from fine dining, let's put it that way, and towards those foods, and those meals that make me happy. Food that I can eat with my hands, pleasant food, home cooking, you know, very small, casual businesses.

I'm saying I'm suffering from fine dining exhaustion. There are also going to be aspects of that world -- you know, the world I came out of, but I like to experience food emotionally when ever possible. And as I've gotten older, you know, it's going to be pork shank, or a bowl of noodles that makes me happy as oppose to large tongues and aspect.


JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: He made a point to me, food doesn't have to be expensive to be good. Sometimes the best tasting foods are these joints that are often we have.


BOURDAIN: I was like food is really important. It's worth fighting about, it's worth arguing about, it's worth talking about all day, but it's only part of a larger spectrum of human experience without good conversation, without ambiance, without love, without company. It's worthless basically.


STELTER: Bourdain was a defining hire for CNN, it was announced back in 2012. It was a strange move. People were wondering why is CNN hiring this chef and author. But it was because CNN executives decided to broaden out beyond just breaking news and headlines, and start to bring in documentaries, start to bring in cultural programming, and new ways to tell stories.


BOURDAIN: For me traveling isn't about taking a vacation, sitting on a beach, or listening to some cheesy tour guide as we travel in packs from all inclusive a day spa. Traveling is going "PARTS UNKNOWN". Sharing a hype or shaman as the sun comes up over a few thousand year on ruin.

And only then realizing you forgot to pack your toothbrush. I would describe myself as a lucky cook who gets to tell stories. I'm certainly not a journalist, not a chef anymore. I'd like to flatter myself by saying I'm an essayist, but I'm a story teller.


STELTER: This was a risk for CNN, and it was a risk for Anthony.


BOURDAIN: Myanmar, after 50 years of nightmare, something unexpected is happening here, and it's pretty incredible. Not too long ago, even filming here officially as an open professional western film crew would have been unthinkable.

In 2007, a Japanese journalist was shot point blank, and killed filming a street demonstration. He's seen talking to anybody with a camera, and it will likely be a knock on your door in the middle of the night. If so far confronted with our cameras a few smiles and mostly in difference at worst. Shocking, considering how recently the government has started to relax its grip.

COOPER: I haven't been there to official Myanmar. It was that long.

BOURDAIN: I've been to a lot of places 20 years after the soviets left 30 years, and people still shy away from the cameras. They still don't want to talk, if they see a camera, it means that it's a bad thing. They are -- they close up if you approach them.

An outsider here, Myanmar, a place just about a year ago you're tossed in jail for consorting the part, everybody was incredibly open. But I'm amaze as how friendly and open people are open on this. It's very easy for me to sit here and say whatever I want about the government, right, we can go home. You know, our lives would go on. [22:50:00] We don't pay the price for that show. Everybody who helped

us could very well pay that price. It should be pointed out that a lot of people did not. A lot of people were very nice to us but said, look, I just -- I've already been in jail, you know. I really don't want to go back. It's a very real concern what happens to the people we leave behind.

But for the moment at least things seem to be moving in the right direction. A country closed off to most for so long, sleeping, a 50- year nightmare for many of its citizens, finally may be waking up. To what? Time will tell.


AMANPOUR: He'd been to Myanmar, which at the time was a full-blown military dictatorship. And he went there and he said to me, here's what I can do with this program, when something big happens in Libya or Myanmar, or in Afghanistan, or Iraq, or wherever it might be, American viewers and viewers around the world will also be able to know about the people there, not just about the dictators, not just about the politics.

But they will be able to get to know the people. And I really think that's important. Because I know think too often, Americans have just a one-dimensional view of a foreign country. And it's only told to tell through the prism of breaking news.

LEMON: I thought that he was a better journalist than many of us ever could be because it came to him naturally. It was just curiosity. And isn't that really what being a journalist is all about, being curious? And he brought something to CNN that had never been there before, and thus to the entire broadcast news industry.

STELTER: It was really like a breath of fresh air, and viewers loved it. The ratings on Sunday night doubled. There were new viewers coming to CNN for the first time including younger viewers who normally didn't want to watch the news. But they did want to watch this larger than life man, this handsome striking figure explore the world, and take them with him.


BOURDAIN: This is Tripoli after 42 years of nightmare. How to build a whole society overnight, and make it work in one of the most contentious, and difficult areas of the world is what people are trying to figure out.

Outside Tripoli's center, there's this, one time axis of all power, and untold evil, a huge complex and sinister offices, barracks, residences, on top of erratic war, and of secret tunnels, and underground facilities.

The Bab al-Azizia, Gadhafi's enormous compound. And on August 23rd, 2011, it fell to rebels. Gadhafi and his family having fled. This is what's left of Gadhafi's palace. So when's the last time you were here? UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Last time is when the revolution is finishing.

The machinery, going in first fighting.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: After then, the people.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (Inaudible), after then, coming a lot of people, normal people listening about something expensive here like the salt and like the gold.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Stop now. Stop now.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They want us to stop filming right now.


(voice-over): While talking, we didn't notice several pickup trucks of local militia had closed in on us. While talking we didn't notice several pickup trucks of local militia had closed in on us.


BOURDAIN: I'll stop.


BOURDAIN: Just relax. Relax.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What's happening?

BOURDAIN: This is their turf, or their area of operation, or somehow under their control. Whatever the case, they're the group in charge today. An argument ensues between our guys and their guys.

[22:50:00] UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (Speaking Foreign Language)

BOURDAIN: All of whom fought against the same forces on this ground a year ago.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (Speaking Foreign Language)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (Speaking Foreign Language)


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They want to delete the tapes. Let's leave. They said you had to delete what you've got. Let's leave.



COOPER: He wasn't afraid of going to a place like Libya which is a very complex, you know, all these different kind of political parties, and competing groups. And he was always very good at sort of being aware of the complexity of a place, and not dumbing it down, or not even trying to give a dissertation on it.


BOURDAIN: Another morning in Tripoli and life goes on. Vendors are out, people go about their daily routines.

AKRAM, FORMER FREEDOM FIGHTER: This is our traditional breakfast.

BOURDAIN: What is this dish called?

AKRAM: Sfenj (Inaudible), which is an overstretched doughnut, I suppose.

BOURDAIN: Right. With an egg.

AKRAM: With an egg on top. You can get them with cheese, you can get them with chili paste, you can have them with honey, with sugar.

BOURDAIN: What are you having? How do you like yours?

AKRAM: I like mine cooked, to be honest.

BOURDAIN: What's the name of this neighborhood?

AKRAM: This is (Inaudible). This is a cradle of the revolution.

BOURDAIN: Right. This was the first neighborhood to rise up?

AKRAM: Yes. This is the first place to rise up.

BOURDAIN: Why do you think this neighborhood and not --

AKRAM: It's an impoverished neighborhood. It's been always liked here by the regime. They made them feel like they're not from this country, to be honest, (Inaudible), and we go for it.


STELTER: Anthony Bourdain really changed what CNN is. He brought this other way to learn about the world, this other way of asking questions. Not through an interview, not through an interrogation but sitting down, and sharing a meal.

What he was doing was journalistic, but more importantly was so human, bringing people on a journey with him while he met people in their place, with their food, with their meals, with their culture. BLITZER: I think Tony was trying to make the world a little bit more

hospitable, a little bit more understanding, a little bit more friendly. He was trying to show, yes, we speak different languages, we come from different cultures, we have different religions, but we're all people.

And we have unique stories to tell, and he wanted to share those stories. In the process, he would make the world a little bit smaller, a little bit more personal. And I'm sure his hope was maybe we can eliminate some of the abuses, the wars, the hatred. And in the process I think that was his goal.


BOURDAIN: A few years back I got the words, I am certain of nothing tattooed on my arm. It's what makes travel what it is, an endless learning curve, the joy of being wrong, of being confused. Africa more than any other continent needs to be seen by the world as both the place we all came from, and where we are going.


BOLDUAN: One of his friends described him to me as a freak of nature, a force of nature, unexplainable, and the world is lucky to have had him.

COOPER: He was a modern day adventurer, and a unique -- somebody with a unique voice, and there's not a lot of people like that left in the world to be honest.


BOURDAIN: I'm revisiting some stuff. Just some -- I was in a weird place in my head when I first came here. I was personally, professionally, everything in my life was changing. I was in this sort of nowhere land between previous life and whatever came next. I'm retracing my steps in a lot of ways to see if it still hurts.


CUOMO: Just because somebody is open about their illness in the past doesn't mean that they're going to be as open about what is happening in their present. And we're going to have to learn more because I would not be surprised if the demons that he had battled for so, so long wound up being part of what wound up taking him from this world.