Preview: Anthony Bourdain and Eric Ripert Cage-Match at Symphony Hall

By Joel Kahn • February 8, 2011 at 11:00 am


On March 4, Symphony Hall will host what is sure to be an exciting night of culinary musings. Anthony Bourdain and Eric Ripert: Good vs. Evil is slated to be a duel of epic proportions, even if the two gastronomical giants are actually good friends.

In this corner: Anthony Bourdain, the iconoclast of the culinary world. Formerly executive chef of New York’s Les Halles, Bourdain broke into superstardom with his 2000 book, Kitchen Confidential: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly, a must read, even if you do not care about food at all. Bourdain’s cynicism, mixed with his outrageous stories from high-pressure, low-brow professional kitchens makes for one of the most entertaining and enlightening books ever. Since Kitchen Confidential, Bourdain hosted A Cook’s Tour on the Food Network (though he condemns the Food Network in his book), and currently presides over Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations on the Travel Channel. Bourdain recently released Medium Raw and took a seat as a semi-permanent judge on this season of Top Chef.

And in this corner: Eric Ripert, executive chef and co-owner of Le Bernardin in New York. Le Bernardin’s accolades are astounding–it has four stars from the New York times (and has retained them longer than any other restaurant), three stars from the Michelin guide (one of only five places in New York), and a perfect 29 food rating in this year’s Zagat Survey. He is also the host of the Emmy-winning Avec Eric on PBS, and was the semi-permanent judge on Top Chef last season (he couldn’t reprise his role this season because Jenn, who works for him, returned as a contestant this season).

It’s sure to be a rabble-rousing night, as Bourdain tends to say some wild things at these types of events. Good vs. Evil tickets range from $35 to $200 for a VIP meet and greet with the chefs and are available online through Ticketmaster.