POST CATEGORY: Highly Likely

Highly Likely: Anthony Bourdain

January 02, 2018 | PacerStacktrain

America's favorite bad boy chef & travel host has been cooking up a love affair with Cannabis.


I knew it! That was the silent exclamation inside my THC-induced brain as I watched Anthony Bourdain, one of America’s prominent food personalities and the host of CNN’s Parts Unknown, roll, then light up a joint, all while overlooking the magnificent Puget Sound in Seattle from his swanky downtown hotel room.

Many know Anthony Bourdain through his former program No Reservations which aired on the Travel Channel for 13 seasons. He exemplifies that sort of brash, New York swagger with a punk rock attitude and unflinching honesty tossed in for good measure. But Bourdain can also be a divisive character and his sometimes antagonizing interactions—often leading fans into a “love or hate” relationship with him. But his contributions to modern travel and food shows can’t be denied.  Bourdain created something new with his personality-driven take on food culture.

anthony-bourdain-quote1.jpgIt all started with his best-selling book Kitchen Confidential, where Bourdain describes a drug-fueled work environment in the kitchens of lower Manhattan that included copious amounts of Cannabis usage on a nightly basis. Sure, there were also heavier substances used and described in the book, but I’d always wondered, given Bourdain’s personality, if he’d continued to use Cannabis.

As he moved into television, there were signs over his 17 seasons on-air that Bourdain might still use Cannabis.

On an episode of No Reservations filmed in Cambodia, Bourdain orders a restaurant’s “Happy Pizza” which he notes had been enhanced with a “powerful herbal compound.”

On Parts Unknown in Amsterdam, just before heading into the infamous redlight district, he says “The use of any controlled substance by me or any member of this crew would be absolutely forbidden according to network standards and all rules of human decency,” he told the camera while arriving at the airport. “Remember kids: don’t do drugs. We don’t.”

Bourdain throws the camera a long, pronounced eye roll.

His style is full of white knuckle honesty combined with sharp satirical snark—and it carries over to his writing for television. An extended segment of Parts Unknown’s show on Morocco was dedicated to showing how hashish-laced Majoon is made by combining keif with honey.

“Of course, network standards and practices prohibit me from even tasting this mind-altering treat. So until I see Christianne and Wolf doing bong rips in the Situation Room, I will, of course, abide by these rules. That’s. The. Kind. Of. Guy. I Am.”

So, Bourdain has consumed plenty of edible Cannabis on his programs. But the question still remained—did he ever smoke it? While it took almost two decades, the latest episode in Seattle put the debate to rest: “I’ve smoked weed since I was 13,” he told a brother-sister Cannabis entrepreneur team over dinner.

Bourdain later broke down the program with CNN’s Anderson Cooper.

“I smoked a hell of a lot of bud on the show and looked straight at the camera and said, ‘This is CNN.’ And I got to tell you, it made me happy,” Bourdain said.

Bourdain noted that CNN’s legal department had to get involved with the decision to smoke Cannabis on camera and that it was ultimately allowed on the network since it was legal in the jurisdiction where he smoked it.

“I’m very proud of my joint-rolling skills, so it was nice to roll a joint on camera. It was a highlight for me—getting ripped on some high-powered, high-test bud.”

Highly Likely highlights amazing Cannabis pioneers who helped pave the way to greater herbal acceptance.

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