The memoir that spawned Kitchen Confidential.

The memoir that spawned Kitchen Confidential.

The memoir that spawned Kitchen Confidential.

Previously published Slate articles made new.
Sept. 20 2005 5:53 AM

Kitchen Confidential

The memoir that spawned the TV show.

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Last night marked the premiere of Kitchen Confidential, a Fox comedy about a celebrity chef who succumbed to drugs, women, and alcohol in a spectacular way and is now trying to relaunch his career. The show, which has received mixed reviews from critics, is based on the 2000 book of the same title by Anthony Bourdain. In this Book Club, Amanda Hesser and Jeffrey Steingarten examined the memoir. "Bourdain is a clever and fluent writer and probably a nice guy," Steingarten wrote. "But reading his book in two sittings is like watching a tape of the immortal Animal House for seven hours straight (I am a slow reader, though with excellent comprehension), in a version that leaves out John Belushi and never reaches the movie's fantastically revolting climax."