When American chef Anthony Bourdain visited Glasgow

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Bourdain said that Glasgow was one of his favourite cities on earth

Anthony Bourdain was a much-loved and respected celebrity chef and travel documentarian up until he sadly passed away in June 2018.

His travel adventures had taken him all across the globe from having a sit-down meal eating bun cha in Vietnam with then US President Barack Obama to hanging out with Iggy Pop and drinking white wine in Miami.

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When filming his ‘Parts Unknown’ series in 2015, Bourdain visited Glasgow to sample some of the city’s fine delicacies and explore the culture. He had visited Glasgow years previously when filming his ‘A Cook’s Tour’ series when he popped into Jinty McGuinty’s for a pint of Guinness.

He first headed to the Old College Bar on High Street which is now no longer there having burned down and demolished in 2021. There he sampled some freshly poured Tennent’s lager which is brewed less than half a mile away from the pub.

After that, he stopped off for a delicious curry at the famed Mother India restaurant at Westminster Terrace where he spoke to Detective John Carnochan about issues from the past and asked what the city still had going for it.

Rogano was next in order with Scottish comedian Janey Godley where the pair tried some fine seafood dishes and spoke about the humour which has been at the heart of the city for generations. After a stroll along Sauchiehall Street, the next part of the episode has almost become folklore with fans of the American chef.

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Bourdain headed for the University Cafe on Byres Road for his final stop in Glasgow. The Verrecchia family has been serving up delicious chippy classics and staples of the city here since 1918.

The University Cafe is a Glasgow landmark.The University Cafe is a Glasgow landmark.
The University Cafe is a Glasgow landmark.

Everything on the menu was tempting for Bourdain but he finally settled on ordering deep-fried haggis, fish and chips with cheese and curry sauce which he was pretty sure God would be against. He said, “That really is one of life’s great pleasures. Don’t let them tell you otherwise.

“There is no more unfairly reviled food on earth than haggis. Its ingredients are, in fact, no more unusual or bizarre or unappetising than any hot dog you ever ate.”

Although we may be bias, this truly was a special episode with one of life’s great people.

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