PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — It’s the classic case of perception versus reality.
Anthony Bourdain, a famous chef and television personality, featured Pittsburgh during his recent hour-long special “Parts Unknown” that aired Sunday night on CNN.
But many locals say Bourdain’s decision to eat his way through the town and feature lesser-known spots left a bad taste in their mouths.
KDKA visited one spot involved in the filming: Grandma B’s Cafe in the Hill District.
Co-owners Dorian Moorefield and Antoine Hayes said the experience was very positive and they’re thankful for the publicity and “big air” time on Sunday night.
“It was strange that they found us,” said Moorefield. “A small restaurant in the middle of the Hill District, but we were happy.”
Both men said they weren’t shocked when Bourdain chose to display the city in a slightly darker light.
“You know he’s gritty. Its called ‘Parts Unknown’ and even some of the parts that he discovered here- they’re unknown to us,” said Moorefield.
But clearly not everyone wants to explore those #PartsUnknown. A quick scroll through Twitter turns up countless negative tweets. Many people even requesting Bourdain return to the ‘Burgh for a redo.
Twitter user Sean Smith said: “So Pittsburgh is still sausages and dumpy bars? This Bourdain show is not the city I live in. Lazy storytelling.”
Twitter user “Stash of Steel” said: “Really let down by the Pittsburgh Parts Unknown. It’s like they made an episode for the sake of promoting people not to come here.”
During the special, Bourdain played bocce in Bloomfield and even landed at a Braddock bar, successfully steering clear of traditional tourist spots. It’s something Mayor John Fetterman said stays true to the TV personality’s style.
“I certainly didn’t expect it was going to be about Mount Washington and Primanti Bros., so for that perspective he mined a lot of things that caught even some Pittsburghers off guard, and so I can see both sides in terms of the critique,” said Mayor Fetterman.