Seven Favorite Fictional Chefs
Don't believe us? Read on.
Here's our list of the Top Seven Fictional Chefs.
7. Jack Bourdain (Bradley Cooper - Kitchen Confidential)
Before Bradley Cooper became the boring/mean guy in The Hangover and Anthony Bourdain was spewing his jaded worldview on a global scale, there was Fox's short-lived Kitchen Confidential. Running for a single season, the show based off of Bourdain's critically acclaimed book of the same name, albeit with a few key omissions (his heroin use, employment in mob-run kitchens, etc.) However, Cooper managed to make the role engaging, balancing hedonism with culinary talent in a way that does the source material some justice. The entire shows run can be found on Hulu.
Hit the jump to see the rest of our list.
6. Andy Botwin (Justin Kirk - Weeds)
Andy Botwin has had a lot of jobs over the course of Weeds' seven season run (drug dealer, Copenhagen tour guide, coyote), but the area he always had the most talent in is, undeniably, cooking. The character was first introduced to viewers as a talented, though perpetually in-trouble, cook on the run. He even impressed with his skills to become a sous chef in luxury hotel in season 6, but that was quickly ended by Nancy.
5. Elzar (John DiMaggio - Futurama)
Elzar began his run on Futurama as a simple Emeril-parody, but evolved into something so much more since then. He's a walking commentary on the greed the celebrity cooking industry as a whole. Sure, he's talented, and can do magical things with a Spice Weasel, but his restaurant is filthy, and he's ready to scam you at a moment's notice. Still, we keep coming back. Few people can make the Unnamable Horror From Beyond, with Mango Chutney quite like Elzar.
Al Yeganeh, the real "Soup Nazi"
4. The Soup Nazi (Larry Thomas - Seinfeld)
At this point, the Soup Nazi is a name recognized even by those who haven't seen a single episode of Seinfeld. Fitting to his nickname, Yev Kassem is talented at making soup, but hates the very existence of his customers (via an insane ordering policy).
But did you know this character was based off of a real person? Al Yeganeh of Soup Kitchen International served as the inspiration for the iconic character. Referred to by locals as the "Terrorist," he made great soup, but also treated patrons with contempt.
When the Seinfeld crew visited Soup Kitchen International after the now famous episode aired, Yeganeh promptly refused their order, exclaiming "No soup for you!" Life imitating art never gets old.
3. Chef (Isaac Hayes - South Park)
Chef was always a fan-favorite with South Park fans. With the soothing voice of Isaac Hayes and an unmatched sexual appetite, he had the makings of an iconic character. He taught the children of South Park the lessons of life, loving, and the value of penicillin all through song. He also made a mean desert snack as well.
All of this only made it hurt more when Isaac Hayes left the show after season 9's Scientology episode. Seeing him return as a child molester a season later, then mauled to death by a bear and mountain lion simultaneously didn't really ease the pain either.
2. Remy the Rat (Patton Oswalt - Ratatouille)
Proof that anyone can be a chef, Remy made some of the best looking computer-animated food since - ever, despite being the exactly what you don't want to find in a kitchen. Personally I'd take a few weeks a sewer rodent sickness, for a dish as hallucinogenic an experience as his climactic ratatouille.
Seriously, if you don't love everything about this film there's probably a giant hole where your heart should be.
1. Swedish Chef (Jim Henson - The Muppets)
Bork bork bork bork bork bork bork bork bork bork bork bork bork bork bork bork bork bork bork bork bork bork bork bork bork bork bork bork bork bork bork bork bork.
*Written in authentic Swedish
Get the Dining Newsletter
The week's top local food news and events, plus interviews with chefs and restaurant owners, dining tips, and a peek at our print review.