American celebrity chef Anthony Bourdain has been found dead in his hotel room in France while working on his CNN series on culinary traditions around the world. He was 61.
CNN confirmed the death, saying in a statement he was found unresponsive Friday morning by friend and chef Eric Ripert, and calling it a suicide.
CNN said Bourdain was in Strasbourg filming an upcoming segment in his series “Parts Unknown.”
The CNN statement said: “His love of great adventure, new friends, fine food and drink and the remarkable stories of the world made him a unique storyteller. His talents never ceased to amaze us and we will miss him very much.”
Strasbourg police and emergency services did not immediately have information about the death.
Bourdain was a master of his crafts — first in the kitchen and then in the media. Through his TV shows and books, he explored the human condition and helped audiences think differently about food, travel and themselves. He advocated for marginalized populations and campaigned for safer working conditions for restaurant staffs.
Along the way, he received practically every award the industry has to offer.
In 2013, Peabody Award judges honored Bourdain and “Parts Unknown” for “expanding our palates and horizons in equal measure.”
While accepting the Peabody award in 2013, Bourdain described how he approached his work.
“We ask very simple questions: What makes you happy? What do you eat? What do you like to cook? And everywhere in the world we go and ask these very simple questions,” he said, “we tend to get some really astonishing answers.”
His death came just days after internationally known fashion designer Kate Spade, 55, was found dead Tuesday in her Manhattan home. Her death was also ruled a suicide.
Spade created a popular line of sleek handbags in the early 1990s and founded a company that had more than 140 retail shops and outlet stores across the United States and more than 175 shops internationally.
Bourdain, a native of New York, launched what would become a multi-hyphenate media career in the early 2000s, with best-selling books like “Kitchen Confidential,” then launched a TV career in 2002 with “A Cook’s Tour” on the Food Network.
Celebrity Chef Anthony Bourdain Found Dead in France at 61