Synopsis: Anthony Bourdain travels to Newfoundland, a region of Canada “with its own distinctive history and culture.” While there he indulges in hearty stick-to-your-bones fare born of necessity and scarcity. Alongside David McMillan and Frédéric Morin (of Joe Beef fame), he discovers just how important the cod industry is not only to the local economy, but to regional identity as well.

On cod’s regional significance:

  • “For over 500 years the icy waters off Newfoundland‘s coast overflowed with a seemingly endless bounty of cod. Fishermen from all over—from as far as England, Portugal, and Spain—came here to pull them from the sea. They built entire food cultures around the delicate white-fleshed fish, and for most of its history cod defined the culture here. Cod was king.”
  • “In 1992, after years of overfishing, the Canadian government shut the industry down. The moratorium wiped out the main source of income for the province and ended a way of life. Though it’s been loosened some, the moratorium is still in effect today.”


A man with simple food needs:

  • “I am, above all things, a man of the people, a regular Joe, a man as moved by a simple slab of Mom’s meatloaf as I am of larks’ tongue in aspic, studded with truffles and moistened with the tears of a unicorn.”


[The speechless Bourdain]

  • “Mmmmm”
  • “Wow”
  • “Oooooh”
  • “R-r-r-really good”
  • “Mmm. Wooow. Sensational. Fantastic”
  • “Wowwwowwee”

Another failed hunting escapade:

  • “Thankfully, aware of my jinx-like effect on on-camera hunting scenes, the boys have stocked our larder with many delicious things. So we’re covered.”
  • “After a humiliation in the wild as severe as ours, as sporting gentlemen, it is required that we discharge our weapons -repeatedly. In this case at nonliving things.”
  • “You know what I like to do for a sausagefest-themed show like this one? I like to get liquored up and throw axes at a target, hoping they don’t bounce off and sink into my groin or someone else’s groin—I hate when that happens.”

Those quotable Canadians:

  • Jeremy Charles: “Respect people who work on the water, you know what I mean?” David McMillan: “Respect the fish and chips a little bit more, right?!”
  • David McMillan (on cod): “That’s why these things are going extinct—they bite like crazy!”
  • Dale Jarvis: “Over the past 20 years there’s been a real shift in how the rest of Canada perceives Newfoundland, but I think also in how Newfoundlanders perceive themselves.”
  • Anthony Bourdain: “So you’re mixing canned and fresh truffles?” Frédéric Morin: “Yeah, because we can. It’s the same reason why a dog eats his ass—because he can.”
  • David McMillan: “Moose meat: best meat. No. 1 meat in the world. No better meat than moose, that’s for sure.”