How Anthony Bourdain Really Felt About Instagram Food Pics

You would be hard-pressed to hit social media nowadays and not see a food photo. Restaurants use the medium to boost their brand; home cooks, bakers, and cocktail lovers show off their efforts; diners report on where they've eaten; food and beverage photographers try to grab more attention to their portfolios.

But, the late Anthony Bourdain had some pretty solid feelings about the Instagramming of food. In an interview with Smithsonian Magazine, Bourdain said he hated the photo-spreading of food via social media — a lot. 

"Chefs b**** about it when it's going on in their restaurants, yet when they go out to dinner, they're taking pictures of everything," Bourdain said in the interview.

He went on to note that, deep down, he felt the trend wasn't about sharing what was in front of you with others. It was about making others feel bad about their food choices. 

"Any notion that that's sharing? It's bulls***. It's about making other people feel bad about what they're eating. And a certain knowledge that what you're eating is more interesting," he added. 

But foodstagramming isn't stopping

Anthony Bourdain would be fit to be tied to see how food photography has evolved if his feelings remained the same about it. According to Social Media Today, #food, #foodporn, #instafood, and #yummy are among the 100 most popular Instagram hashtags. Those hashtags, notes the site, are tied to hundreds of millions of food photos. 

It turns out, Bourdain was right about something — food photos make us seem more influential among our circle and have almost become a way to brag. Social Media Today writes that well-presented food photos show people in a positive light to others. Additionally, a quarter of those photos are a way to document certain days, especially ones that are out of the ordinary or an accomplishment (i.e., vacation meal, anniversary dinner, cocktails made at home). 

However, there is one positive, says the website. Taking photos before a meal can actually help people enjoy their food more. Dubbed "Foodstagramming," it has become a ritual people look forward to before chowing down. And it doesn't even have to be high-end meals, either. The statistics site Omnicore figured out that pizza and sushi are the most popular food photos on Instagram.