Anthony Bourdain -- Kitchen Confidential author, Parts Unknown host, and your favorite Obama dinner companion -- was recently in LA for a couple of weeks, shooting an episode of his CNN show, promoting the second season of The Balvenie's Raw Craft with Anthony Bourdain, and essentially holding court in many of the city's best restaurants. You want to know where he ate, right?? Right. Well, we talked to him about that, as well as how he's seen LA's dining scene change in the last decade, and why rumors of a Restaurant Apocalypse are highly overrated.
From Instagram, it's clear you've been in LA for a while: what's been your LA eating protocol?
Anthony Bourdain: Well, I just finished doing an episode of Parts Unknown that was all shot within Mexican and Chicano culture, so I've been eating a lot of Mexican food for the last week. Before that, I was hitting some old favorites and a couple places I was curious about.
Were there any big discoveries?
Bourdain: I hadn't been to chi SPACCA before. That was amazing. I really, really, really appreciated it and enjoyed it. I went to a place out in Burbank. Josh Homme [from Queens of the Stone Age] turned me on to it: Chili John's, in Burbank. It was awesome. Oh man. It's been there since the '20s, since like Prohibition. It's really cheap thrills. Delicious, about as not-fancy as you get. It's not hipster chili. It's ground meat, you know, just really good. Slopped on top of some beans and rice. It was delicious. I went there. And I always go to Park's Barbeque. I think their banchan are some of the best I've ever had.