The celebrated chef and TV personality was found unresponsive in his hotel room in Strasbourg, France, where he was shooting an upcoming episode of his CNN travel and food show, Parts Unknown. According to the cable news network, which reported his death as a suicide, Bourdain was found by close friend and fellow celebrity chef Eric Ripert.
In a statement to Us Weekly, 53-year-old Ripert, who appeared with Bourdain on many of his shows, called him a “dear friend.”
Bizarre Foods With Andrew Zimmern host Andrew Zimmern, who was a friend of Bourdain’s tells Us, “This morning, I woke to learn of the passing of my friend, Anthony Bourdain. We had much in common personally, not the least of which was the shared mission to learn about cultures around the world through food. Tony was the smartest, funniest of friends, perpetually curious and endlessly charming. There were few people with whom I shared more of myself with and I always relied on his sagacity and insight as a great barometer of whatever my next move would be. Tony’s life has been endlessly chronicled and he was recently blessed with and lightened by a new love, making it all the more difficult to reconcile this devastating loss.”
Zimmern adds that his “heart and profound condolences go out to Tony’s family” including the “three wonderful women in his life, especially his amazing daughter.”
“I only wish a different ending could have been written for one of the world’s most gifted storytellers,” the 56-year-old TV personality continued. “Out of respect for all of his friends and family I think it best to leave it there for now and let’s remember all the joy he brought us over the years. I will miss him very much.”
In yet another moving tribute, chef and author Sandra Lee tells Us she was “shocked” to learn of Bourdain’s passing and praised his fiery personality. “Anthony was a larger than life personality with so much talent. He was a gifted, smart, articulate man and even though he could be incredibly critical, especially of me, somehow that was part of his charm,” the 51-year-old shared. “The food entertainment business is a family and every member has their place with a unique personality; we all have a voice within our family and we always stick together. That does not mean we always agree or get along but we all truly love and adore one another no matter what. I am so very sad. The Food and Entertainment family has lost their bad boy and he will be greatly missed.”
Fellow celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay took to Twitter early Friday to express his shock. “Stunned and saddened by the loss of Anthony Bourdain,” the MasterChef host, 51, wrote. “He brought the world into our homes and inspired so many people to explore cultures and cities through their food. Remember that help is a phone call away US: 1-800-273-TALK UK: 116 123.”
Stunned and saddened by the loss of Anthony Bourdain. He brought the world into our homes and inspired so many people to explore cultures and cities through their food. Remember that help is a phone call away US:1-800-273-TALK UK: 116 123
— Gordon Ramsay (@GordonRamsay) June 8, 2018
Hours later, Ramsay shared a “vintage clip” of Bourdain visiting his Gordon Ramsay Restaurant in London.
Seems perfect to share this today. It's a vintage clip of Anthony Bourdain when he stopped by Restaurant Gordon Ramsay over 17 years ago. Sending your family all our love -The Ramsay's xxx https://t.co/dcULITxJwA
— Gordon Ramsay (@GordonRamsay) June 8, 2018
In a lengthy Instagram post, famed chef Thomas Keller wrote, in part, “Tony was a force in the kitchen and beyond. He was cool and irreverent. His curiosity was infectious. He made us more curious too.”
Also on Instagram, chef Richard Blais wrote, in part, “So many of us lost a sense of balance today. My heart goes out to those who knew [Tony] him well, his family, friends, crew and fans.”
See more chef tributes to Bourdain below.
Today the world lost a giant force of nature @anthonybourdain a brilliant chef who knew how to speak the language of cooks and an unparalleled food /travel /culture #storyteller but most importantly a dear friend . His passion for cooking, writing and his hunger for adventure was inspiring. We will always have Lyon and those days of eating like kings together with Monsieur #PaulBocuse @paulbocuse_officiel for @PartsUnknown. His passionate character and true honesty will be missed across the industry and the world. We will continue to honor you Tony and may you rest in paradise 🙏 My condolences, love and prayers go to his family and all those mourning his powerful soul .
I’m shocked and extremely saddened by the tragic loss of such an inspiring man. Tony was a great soul, a mentor, a friend, a father, and an incredible chef.
— Emeril Lagasse (@Emeril) June 8, 2018
My friend..I know you are on a Ferry going to somewhere amazing…..you still had so many places to show us, whispering to our souls the great possibilities beyond what we could see with our own eyes…you only saw beauty in all https://t.co/Ltw9HrCBb2 will always travel with me https://t.co/Yv4Ntud6X0
— José Andrés (@chefjoseandres) June 8, 2018
I am shocked and deeply saddened. RIP to a father, partner, chef, writer, and incredibly talented man. @Bourdain ❤️ Prayers for his loved ones.
— Antoni Porowski (@antoni) June 8, 2018
If a life can be measured by the number of other lives it inspired, enlightened, enraged, delighted, provoked, instructed, touched, and ultimately devastated…Anthony Bourdain’s sits atop the list. Beyond stunned. Hug someone you love today.
— Danny Meyer (@dhmeyer) June 8, 2018
An old pic of his first visit to Girl and the Goat in 2012. I remember feeling much cooler than I really am. Tony was very supportive of me since the first time we met on the set of Top Chef 12 years ago. When he paid me a compliment, it made such a long lasting impact on me- because he simply was not full of shit. More well spoken then I could keep up with. Out living life and exploring the world as I wish I could. I will always admire him and be thankful I got to spend a little time with him.
Another incredible loss to suicide. Heart broken, sad, in disbelief. https://t.co/clsrqXn6E5
— Rene Redzepi (@ReneRedzepiNoma) June 8, 2018
Heartbroken to hear about Tony Bourdain’s death. Unbearable for his family and girlfriend. Am going off twitter for a while
— Nigella Lawson (@Nigella_Lawson) June 8, 2018
Gutted to hear we’ve lost @Bourdain. If you are ever feeling alone, please call the National Suicide Prevention Hotline: 1 (800) 273-8255.
— Buddy Valastro (@CakeBossBuddy) June 8, 2018
RIP doubtful. Tony’s restless spirit will roam the earth in search of justice, truth and a great bowl of noodles. @Bourdain
— Tom Colicchio (@tomcolicchio) June 8, 2018
I just woke up to the horrible news about my friend @Bourdain. In shock and devastated. One of the most fun and wittiest men I knew. Tony you will be missed. RIP
— Padma Lakshmi (@PadmaLakshmi) June 8, 2018
— GRAHAM ELLIOT (@grahamelliot) June 8, 2018
— Carla Hall (@carlahall) June 8, 2018
I have to say I’m in total shock to hear that the amazing @Bourdain has just died 💔 he really broke the mould, pushed the culinary conversation, Rest in peace chef 👨🍳 🙏 thoughts and love to all his family and close friends xxxxxxxxxxx pic.twitter.com/HB7sV7CeRH
— Jamie Oliver (@jamieoliver) June 8, 2018
If you or someone you know is in emotional distress or considering suicide, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255).