The Reason Anthony Bourdain Valued His Time As A Dishwasher

Celebrity chef Anthony Bourdain was a man of substance who had scores of fans. According to Biography, Bourdain did very well for himself in his lifetime. He wrote popular cookbooks, traveled to remote corners of the world in a bid to introduce his fans to food from different cultures, and worked at many acclaimed restaurants such as the Supper Club, One Fifth Avenue, and Sullivan's in New York.

It must be noted that Bourdain was a self-made man who didn't have a godfather in the food industry. However, the chef didn't let that stop him, and he worked super hard to stand out from among his peers before he was noticed for his culinary talent. Bourdain also studied at the Culinary Institute of America in a bid to prepare for a career in the kitchen, and took up a few odd jobs along the way. For instance, before Bourdain figured out what he really wanted to do with his life, he worked as a dishwasher, not realizing how interesting the experience would be for him.

Bourdain believed that it was a learning experience

Bourdain recalled his time as a dishwasher in a conversation with NPR. He said that this was his first job, something that helped him get out of a rut and actually put in the work required to succeed. Bourdain also shared that being disciplined and following the rules changed him in some ways as he got used to a routine and stopped being lazy. 

Additionally, being a dishwasher was very useful in terms of teaching Bourdain a useful set of skills. "At its root, it is factory work in the sense that the religion of any successful or busy restaurant is consistency," he explained. "You have to do the same dish the same way and on time. I was a happy dishwasher."

Plus, for Bourdain, stepping into the restaurant industry and learning on the job from others he looked up to was a game-changer. He felt proud when he got things done and was thus highly motivated to be a part of the culinary space. Thank God for that, huh?