The Real Reason Anthony Bourdain Hated Club Sandwiches

Anthony Bourdain disliked many things. Ask Google to scour the internet for "Anthony Bourdain's dislikes," and there's no shortage of articles on this most-loved topic to choose from. Here are a few, just to set the stage: "List of Everything Anthony Bourdain Hates and Dislikes" (via Inside Hook), "20 Foods Anthony Bourdain Wouldn't Touch With A 10-ft. Pole" (via The Travel), and "18 Foods and Drinks Anthony Bourdain Has Insulted" (via Showbiz CheatSheet). He hated pumpkin-spice flavored anything, the culture's infatuation with bacon, craft beer nerds, truffle oil, and even said once he "kinda" wanted to murder all the friends from "Friends" (via People).

There was perhaps no other celebrity chef (he also despised that label) we felt more connected to. Through his brave travels, his restless spirit, and his sharp-witted way with words, Bourdain helped us think differently about food, ourselves, and the world, connecting us in a way few others did.

Another of his well-documented dislikes had to do with the common, beloved club sandwich. Bourdain compared this seemingly innocuous double-decker piled with deli meat (usually turkey), bacon, tomato, lettuce, and mayo to Al Qaeda, of course (via Los Angeles Times).

The third slice of bread on a club sandwich is useless

In his 2016 cookbook "Appetites," Bourdain explains, "I'm really irritated by that useless middle slice of bread on the club sandwich. It's been there forever; it's not a trend. It's lasted for decades and why, when we can so easily dispense with it" (via Los Angeles Times). This bland yet popular room service sandwich and its two-layer affair apparently had elite beginnings in the "country's stuffy gentlemen's clubs" of the 19th century, and continues to be a permanent fixture of "country and city club cuisine" (via Scroll). 

And yes, Al Qaeda. In his Crimes Against Food list (posted at Thrillist), Bourdain ranted, "You know who invented the middle slice? Enemies of freedom. Their mission? Sap our will to live by ruining our sandwich experiences through 'tectonic slide.'" Another valid point. Who wants the messy, dehumanizing experience of an extra slice of bread slathered with mayo slipping and sliding around when you're just trying to get the bulk of the sandwich into your mouth? You're hungry, and your sandwich is falling apart. It's just wrong.

So, the next time you decide on a club sandwich, you have choices. You can throw your fist up in the air and yell "fight the power!" Or, you can just ask the kitchen to make your club with only two slices of bread.