Anthony Bourdain was famous for many things, and most of them involved or were enhanced by his acerbic wit. The side effect of it, though, was Bourdain’s many public feuds. Bobby Flay didn’t dodge the late “Parts Unknown” host’s sharp tongue. In the 2014 Las Vegas episode of his award-winning CNN series, Bourdain took a jab at Flay while at the Caesars Palace villa. “Bobby Flay probably lives like this all the time,” he joked (via Eater). Bourdain, however, was even more cruel when it came to Flay’s cooking competition show. “‘Beat Bobby Flay’ sounds promising until you realize it’s about cooking,” Bourdain said (via Delaware Online). Yikes!
In Bourdain’s defense, his beef is seemingly more with the Food Network than with Flay. In a 2007 guest essay for Michael Ruhlman’s blog, Bourdain criticized the network for capitalizing on Flay’s “strong ‘negatives’ among some viewer responses” by purposefully making him lose to amateurs. “Now… does ANYONE actually believe that Bobby Flay can’t make a better chili than a supermarket ground beef bearing amateur? I don’t. It’s a cruel exercise in humiliation,” Bourdain penned.
Still, jokes at Flay’s expense amused him. When Flay supposedly acted to have the “Angry Bobby Flay” Twitter account shut down, Bourdain told HuffPost that Flay was thin-skinned, but showed sympathy for him nonetheless. “That’s so lame. I like Bobby — he’s a decent guy — but I’m really sorry to hear that,” said Bourdain, who was a fan of the mock account.