Celebrity bad-boy chef Anthony Bourdain had the opportunity to share a table with President Barack Obama in Hanoi, Vietnam. While the two sat in a low-brow noodle shop they chatted about a variety of subjects including food, their families, and even a little politics.
The pair met with one another back in May, and finally the time has come for the public to see the full footage of Bourdain’s outing with Obama. The most recent season of “Anothony Bourdain: Parts Unknown” will premiere on Sept 25 and the first episode will feature Obama. Bourdain is also coincidentally releasing a brand new cookbook a month after the new season launches.
Bourdain answered some questions from Esquire Magazine. For example the sit-down between him and Obama had been planned a full year before the two met, and Bourdain was sworn to secrecy. He said, “The White House reached out to us, and when we heard about the Southeast Asia wing [of the President’s trip], they told us in confidence that Vietnam would be one of the stops, and the matter was settled as far as I was concerned.” Bourdain went on to describe how kind Obama was to the entire crew, even offering them food:
The President was very loose, very unconcerned. We didn’t receive any briefing or guidance or anything like that from the network or the White House as far as what we’d talk about or what we should or shouldn’t do. He really put everyone at ease. He turned to the camera crew at one point, and he said, “Do you guys eat? Do you get some of this? Does this guy feed you?” Nobody ever asks that of the camera crew.
The entire meeting between Bourdain and Obama was off the cuff and not scripted. The viewing audience will have a real treat to indulge in soon enough when two icons meet face to face on the small screen.
Watch some media coverage of their meeting below: