Anthony Bourdain v. Rachael Ray

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Anthony Bourdain earned his reputation as the "bad boy of cuisine" by drinking, smoking, and swearing his way through exotic eating adventures on the Discovery Channel's No Reservations. This is a man who's bravely tried seal eyeballs, sheep testicles, and a warthog's rectum - but claims the most disgusting thing he's ever eaten is a Chicken McNugget. Men actually "get" him, women swoon over him, and vegetarians, well, they hate him - probably because he has repeatedly referred to them as "the enemy of everything good and decent in the human spirit." But nobody is going to argue that Bourdain isn't entertaining and besides that, he's got 28 years of kitchen experience to back up his boorish behavior.

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...Which brings us to his arch enemy and polar opposite: Rachael Ray. If these cooks were actors, Ray would be Reese Witherspoon whereas Bourdain would be Charlie Sheen. The syndicated talk show host and brain behind 30 Minute Meals is America's highest grossing celeb chef. But she's also the most down to earth. She's bubbly and full of silly catch phrases, unembarrassed to exclaim "Yum-o!" over a bowl of mind numbingly simple, self-made mac and cheese. Viewers relate to and adore her because really, she's just like their chubby but loveable best friend from high school. And, unlike Bourdain, she has no formal training and cheerfully fesses up, "I'm completely unqualified for any job I've ever had."

So which of these New York-based food stars comes out on top? It's a close race, but we're giving it to Bourdain. Ray has a more recognizable brand and makes more money, but Bourdain is cooler and knows his way better around the kitchen. Ask yourself, which of these two would you rather have drinks with? Who would you rather have cook you dinner? That's what we thought.

 
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