Carlos Llaguno Garcia, the Mexican born chef who rose from being an undocumented immigrant to executive chef at Les Halles, has died of cancer. He was 38. Carlos gained some minor television fame when he took his former mentor, Anthony Bourdain, on a tour of Puebla and Mexico City for No Reservations, and also appeared in his role as the restaurant's executive chef when Bourdain and chef Eric Ripert went back to work in the Les Halles kitchen for the show.
"Pastry work takes a level of skill, precision and rigor that I lacked in spades. I could’ve maybe become a decent pastry cook, with months of practice and a patient boss, but I was in no way qualified to be a pastry chef. I gave it my best effort, for three days, until the chef-owner realized her mistake and fired me. The place closed in less than 6 months. I never got paid." Laurie Woolever at The Billfold talks about how she went from Botantical Garden Intern to Anthony Bourdain's assistant.
Conservative bon vivant Michael Anton writes about the thrill of cooking in an haute cuisine restaurant, as well as the rise of celebrity chef culture and personalities like Anthony Bourdain and Michael Ruhlman.
Food Fight: Does Healthy Food Have to Be More Expensive? In which the blog Get Rich Slowly chronicles an argument about nutrition vs cost and then invites readers to chime in.
Hezbollah-Tofu Renegades systematically vegetarianize recipes from antiveganist chef Anthony Bourdain, who wrote (in Kitchen Confidential): “Vegetarians, and their Hezobollah-like splinter-faction, the vegans, are a persistent irritant to any chef worth a damn.” [more inside]
No Reservations marks the second foodie inspired movie out in the past couple months, after the charming Ratatouille. Slate pegs the animated movie as getting things right, with help from the well renowned Thomas Keller at the French Laundry. But at home and in professional kitchens, things aren't always so pristine. Is this foodie culture better for us, or just part of a greater problem?