The Food Rumor Anthony Bourdain Really Hated

Anthony Bourdain's list of favorite restaurants might not surprise you. As cataloged in a posthumous Discover article, Bourdain was a regular at highbrow establishments such as Le Comptoir of Paris and Mission Chinese Food in NYC. But did you know he was also a longtime time fan of California's In-N-Out Burger? In fact, in an interview with Eater posted in 2015 (via YouTube), the Culinary Institute of America alumnus and frequent "Top Chef" guest judge (via IMDb) described the burger restaurant as "the only fast food chain that [he] actually like[d]" and "[his] favorite restaurant in Los Angeles."

Bourdain loved In-N-Out so much that during his interview with Eater at an LA-based In-N-Out, he reviewed the restaurant's signature Double-Double burgers and broke down the "perfect design" of the dual-patty sandwich. (A key feature of the Double-Double, as he pointed out, is actually the thinness of its patties – as well as the use of a "cheese-like substance" over "fancy cheese." Who knew?) Before digging into his meal, though, Bourdain took a minute to address a rumor about In-N-Out that had him seeing red.

In-N-Out comes to the East Coast?

"Everyone once in a while ... some cruel person starts a rumor ... that In-N-Out is coming to Brooklyn or to one of the boroughs. And everybody in New York goes ... insane," Bourdain explained (via YouTube). Although rumors of this kind have been circulating since at least 2007 (see, for example, this clipping of a 2007 Departure article, shared on Serious Eats) Bourdain, who is from New York City (via Britannica), may be referring in particular to a 2010 April Fool's Day incident, in which an anonymous prankster staged promotion for the opening of two In-N-Out locations in NYC, one in Union Square and the other on Broadway – as reported by Gothamist. New York City did, indeed, go "insane," with many people taking almost immediately to Twitter to express their excitement (and then, the next day, disappointment.)

Even after the embarrassment of this prank, rumors about In-N-Out coming to NYC continue to pop up on social media. As recently as 2019, a Double-Double discovered on a random street in Queens caused a flurry of speculation about In-N-Out finally arriving in New York City. But the answer then was the same as it was nine years ago: "In-N-Out has no plans to open a New York location," according to The New York Times. For now, New Yorkers would be best off following Bourdain's example and stopping at an In-N-Out whenever they happen to pass through L.A.