Anthony Bourdain's 'Saddest' Meal Was at a Popular American Chain

click to play video

Considering his recent remarks on craft beer snobs, gluten-free diets, and annoying foodie children (among other subjects), Anthony Bourdain isn't shy about unleashing his no-nonsense opinion about anything food-related, and more. It's what makes him so damn authentic. With that in mind, his characteristically blunt account of the "saddest" and worst food experience he's had in recent years should come as no surprise. It's vividly terrible. 

During Tuesday night's episode of Conan, Bourdain sat down with the late night host to promote his new cookbook, Appetites. But as you can see in the clip above, the conversation veers from the subject of comfort food to the story of Bourdain's traumatic, "soul-crushing" experience eating at an airport Johnny Rockets location a few years ago. The meal involved a cold burger, limp fries, and from what it sounds like, damn near-palpable misery among everyone involved. 

"Such things, rightly or wrongly, send me into a spiral of misery and depression that lasted for three days, so it was really the most soul-destroying recent meal experience," he says. "Not a fan." Yep, that's right: this is coming from the same dude who's famous for eating sheep testicles on TV. 

But, hey, it's hard to feel bad for a guy who gets to criss-cross the globe visiting spectacular places and eating delicious food for a living. 

Sign up here for our daily Thrillist email, and get your fix of the best in food/drink/fun.

Tony Merevick is Cities News Editor at Thrillist and agrees that airport food is the worst. Send news tips to and follow him on Twitter @tonymerevick.