Late chef Anthony Bourdain will be remembered for his many hats: food connoisseur, travel crusader, and honest storyteller. But before his days exploring exotic cuisine around the world on Parts Unknown, he was the executive chef at New York's Brasserie Les Halles. In the wake of Bourdain's death, fans are flocking to the now-close restaurant to pay tribute.
Bourdain, 61 was found dead Friday of an apparent suicide in France. During his early career, he worked behind the scenes in several kitchens and then eight years as executive chef at Les Halles. The iconic restaurant brought him to public fame because while there, he submitted an essay to the The New Yorker that revealed the darkest sides of the industry. Next, in 2000, he published his break-through memoir Kitchen Confidential: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly.
Since Les Halles was a significant milestone in Bourdain's career, admirers have created a make-shift memorial there. At the location at 411 Park Avenue in New York, which closed its doors in 2016, mourners are laying down flowers, handwritten cards, and photos of Bourdain. Many left behind heartfelt notes on how the beloved chef touch them and gifted them new ways of looking at the world.
"Thank you for what you gave to this world," one person wrote. "You have changed our lives forever."
Several have taken to Twitter to post the overflowing sidewalk outside both locations.
This story originally appeared on Esquire.com.
* Minor edits have been made by the Esquiremag.ph editors.