tv Anthony Bourdain Parts Unknown CNN April 21, 2019 12:00am-1:00am PDT
>> anthony: i've been here before. this coastline. this city. i was looking for something then. but instead, i found this -- uruguay. the tiny, under-appreciated south american country tucked between argentina and brazil. only three million people live here -- half of them in the capitol city of montevideo. >> anthony: i love this city. i love this country. i mean, there's a vibe here that just is unlike any other place on the continent. it's the opposite of new york in a lot of ways, like people aren't pushy here. you know in new york everybody
is like sort of hungry and pushy and moving. >> nacho: here, it's extremely laid back. the only competition is soccer. that's the only time that you get competitive and it gets extreme. ♪ >> anthony: ignacio mattos is the chef owner of three very successful restaurants in new york city -- estela, cafe altro paradiso, and flora bar. he's been a new yorker for the past 12 years. but he comes from here. >> nacho: uruguay is a pretty chill and relaxed place where you can just disconnect from everything. for me it's a melting pot. it's mostly spanish and italian immigrant food. >> anthony: bar arocena, in montevideo's carrasco neighborhood, specializes in uruguay's unofficial national sandwich -- the legendary chivito. 24 hours a day, 7 days a week since 1923. a prince, a king, a gargantua among sandwiches. this terror-inspiring heap of protein is built out of steak,
ham, bacon, cheese, hard-boiled egg, mayo, and garnishes. >> anthony: that's like a perfect sandwich. now last time i was here, i have to admit that after about six days, i would've killed somebody for a vegetable. i mean, i didn't see a single -- >> nacho: you're going to feel like that very soon. ♪ >> anthony: nacho, as he's called by nearly everyone, started his career at the age of 17 with the master of fire and burning wood, argentinian chef, francis mallmann and stayed with him for ten years before moving to the u.s. >> nacho: working for francis mallmann, i felt at home. they were just a bunch of outsiders that found a place where they belong, you know, finally this new culture and new flavors. >> anthony: how often do you come? >> nacho: every two years. >> anthony: and how long do you spend? >> nacho: i usually spend a week. >> anthony: why so little?
>> nacho: we live in new york. you know what i'm talking about. >> anthony: yeah, i do. >> nacho: i mean, i love it here, but it's -- you have to commit to it here. ♪ >> anthony: but you were born here, you spent your childhood here. do you feel the way i feel about this place? it is special, right? >> nacho: i think it's special. but i'm so far detached from it. but i can go back to that and i can just connect. >> anthony: well, we'll see. over the next few days we'll see whether you can just slide back in. >> nacho: we will. oh, we will. there's no other way out, there's no other way around it. you have to.
96% of eligible uruguayans voted in the last election. compare that to barely 60% here in the u.s. >> anthony: there's something really special about this place. >> carina: you like it? >> anthony: it's really one of my favorite countries, it's really -- >> carina: amazing. many uruguayans would say that it's the worst place of their -- >> anthony: well, a lot of -- that's weird. some of the uruguayans i've spoken to are very ambivalent about -- >> carina: "i like it, but you know." >> anthony: and i guess i don't really understand. >> anthony: i meet carina novarese, a journalist and editor with the newspaper "el observador," at escaramuza cafe and bookstore. >> carina: i think this thing that a uruguayan has it's kind of pessimistic and sometimes complains too much about what we have, comes from before 1930s, '40s and after the second world war, the switzerland of the americas, they used to call us. montevideo, butew reminders of plenty of evidence that this is
the chief city of a dynamic and progressive country. >> anthony: it was a pretty cool society -- healthcare was free, cradle to grave, education -- >> carina: also a very big medium class. that is very important for uruguay. >> anthony: right. >> carina: that began to change after the '60s and '70s. >> anthony: one could say that the prospect of socialist or god forbid communist movements in latin america in the '60s was an area of great concern for the u.s. and it's more authoritarian leaning allies in the region, so the emergence of the radical national liberation movement, known as the tupamaros, was cause for alarm at the cia. >> carina: a lot of things happened in the '60s, in the context of latin america. a lot of students, young people were very active in politics. they weren't the low classes, as you could say, they weren't the poor people -- >> anthony: these were middle-class kids, and highly radicalized. >> carina: yeah. at the beginning i think they really thought they could change the system.
>> anthony: with covert and overt support by our country, a state of emergency was declared and a right-wing dictatorship grabbed hold of the instruments of power, launching a period of repression that lasted from 1973 until 1985. supported and often guided by cia officers, trained in what we call these days "enhanced interrogation methods," some of the most brutal bastards in the ugliest military juntas on earth crushed minds and bodies in cells across latin america. >> anthony: what kind of people were finding themselves swept up? >> carina: teachers. professors from university. >> anthony: troublesome intellectuals. >> carina: sometimes lawyers, or -- >> anthony: something like something like 3% to 5% of the population had gone through the prison system. i mean, we're not talking about incarceration, we're talking about they were tortured and then kept inside a prison system that was specifically designed to pretty much destroy them. >> anthony: in the mid-1980s the people of uruguay had had enough. massive demonstrations and
strikes finally forced the government to hold elections and the military was swept from power. >> carina: we are now a democratic country since 1984. >> anthony: and how's it going? >> carina: i think it's going well. we have troubles. we are in latin america. we like to believe that we are a european country, but we are not. >> anthony: but are you optimistic? >> carina: i am, i am. i don't see like a huge crisis coming. but also when they came, you never realized before, so. ♪
♪ >> anthony: when people think of this often overlooked, little country -- if they think of it at all -- they tend to think of it, patronizingly, as argentina's "little brother." not so. and that attitude pushes people here to think of themselves in many ways as existentially in opposition to their bigger,
louder neighbor. >> anthony: where were you born? are you from montevideo? >> lucia: no, no, i'm from argentina. >> anthony: is it a big difference culturally -- argentina and uruguay? >> lucia: here, if you're a little bit courageous, then you made it. you know? >> nacho: it's a sin here. like to be flashy, it's a sin. >> lucia: to be successful, it's not something that -- >> anthony: you gotta do it quietly. >> lucia: there is a saying, "quedate en la chiquita." it means stay in the small things, you know? quedate en la chiquita. it's something that defines uruguay in a way. >> anthony: lucia soria is the chef and owner of jacinto in montevideo's old city. she worked with nacho back in the mallmann years. >> anthony: what was it like for a woman working in the restaurant industry in the early 2000's? >> lucia: i was very lucky because francis, he had this like army of women, no? around him. >> anthony: you were surrounded
by women from the beginning? >> lucia: yes. >> anthony: is that an unusual situation in uruguay do you think? >> nacho: i mean -- >> anthony: i'm not asking you, man, you're a man. i'm asking -- >> nacho: i feel like a woman. >> anthony: the food here takes its cues from spain and italy. homemade gnocchi with mushrooms and pumpkin. prawns with avocado, apple and wasabi. beef tartare with quail egg. >> anthony: so when you were first planning a menu for this place and thinking about the concept, what inspired you? >> lucia: i wanted to have like a small restaurant, but that you could have a very nice everything, but small. you know? one fish, very nice. a little vegetables, you know? >> anthony: right, this is the most vegetables i've ever seen in this country all at one time. we're all driven people at this table. you know, you went all the way to new york, you have how many restaurants in new york? just the one, two, three? >> group: three. >> anthony: three. >> lucia: nice number, man.
>> anthony: you're not lazy. >> lucia: you could have seven. >> anthony: i'm going to guess you're like this, too. we're all driven people, so where is your happy place? >> lucia: well, i got married on saturday. >> anthony: this past saturday? >> lucia: yes, that was the day that i felt happy all day. but it's good because you cannot have happiness all the time, you know? happiness -- >> anthony: no, no, happiness all the time is fascism. >> lucia: it's a disease, man. >> anthony: it's oppressive. >> lucia: you're not doing anything. >> anthony: but if you have a few moments a week, where you just go, "oh shit, i'm happy." >> lucia: yeah. >> anthony: it sneaks up on you. ♪ >> anthony: which is more satisfying, eating a good meal, or cooking a good meal for somebody you really care about? >> lucia: i think eating. >> nacho: i actually enjoy both, but i don't wanna hear anything. i don't want you to talk to me, i just want to see your expression, like seeing your connecting without having to
have a dialogue about it. >> anthony: see, i'm not sure. cooking for customers, that's a different experience. making an omelet for someone -- >> lucia: in the morning, after. you're saying? yeah. >> anthony: it's really the best. >> lucia: the guy that i marry, i was with him for the first time. and i cooked three eggs, two asparagus, and five cherry tomatoes, with my heart. and we had this small but very beautiful breakfast/brunch/lunch. >> anthony: it's the best thing ever, you're going to make me cry. >> lucia: you know? >> anthony: you're going to make me cry. there is some basic urge that made all of us at this table want to cook. there is a desire to say something you can't say to nurture. >> lucia: so basic and it's so beautiful that it's so basic. ♪ ♪ ♪
>> anthony: hablan por la espalda got together in 1996 when they were all just teenagers. they were considered pioneers of the diy hardcore movement here. two decades on, they're still one of the country's most popular bands, and they recently opened for iggy pop. ♪ ♪ >> anthony: right, so what does everybody do here? what do you do? >> valentin: i'm a psychologist. >> anthony: psychologist, this will come in useful later.
[ laughter ] musician and uh -- >> fermin: i'm a writer too. >> anthony: writer and uh, restaurateur. >> tuka: well, i work in post-production. >> anthony: post-production? that could be -- actually this is a very useful table. [ laughter ] >> anthony: fermin, the lead singer and songwriter, grew up with nacho. tuka and valentin play guitar. >> anthony: what do people like to listen to in uruguay? >> fermin: it's a very musical country, i think. do you know candombe? >> anthony: yeah. >> fermin: okay, that's like our native rhythm. >> tuka: and folklore, from here, it used to be called protest music. >> anthony: protest music. >> tuka: so it was like late '60s, early '70s was the most popular music, but then came the dictatorship. >> anthony: right, so no more of that. >> tuka: everybody had to leave the country. >> anthony: dictatorships are usually like -- usually bad for music. >> tuka: yeah. >> anthony: they're good for the underground music scene, but not so good for the -- >> tuka: not for the popular music. ♪ do you want to smoke? >> anthony: yeah, sure. >> tuka: i brought some. >> anthony: excellent, good idea. i am permitted to smoke weed on camera now.
>> tuka: yeah, you are in uruguay. >> anthony: i'm observing local customs. ♪ >> anthony: proceed to smoke weed. it's cool. everybody's doing it. somebody call the elfin jeff sessions. he'll shit himself. >> anthony: how long has weed been legal here? >> fermin: one year. >> anthony: a year? awesome. >> tuka: but here, like, you could smoke in the street for always. >> anthony: do you have dispensaries? do you have stores you can go to? >> valentin: that's the problem here now. the pharmacies cannot sell because -- >> tuka: the international banks don't want to accept drug money. >> anthony: so if i were to open up a marijuana hydroponic farm? >> tuka: you can have your club. >> nacho: all right, when are we starting this? [ laughter ] >> anthony: i don't know, man, let me smoke another joint. ♪ ♪
>> anthony: what to do next? pizza and beers, yo, at bar las flores. >> anthony: so um, here's an interesting question -- what is the national pathology of uruguay? >> valentin: it's the envy from -- >> anthony: envy? >> valentin: yeah, uruguayan very envy. you always envy like -- i cannot envy a very big guitarist, guitar player. i cannot envy paco de lucia. i will envy this kind of guitarist that plays almost like me, just a little better. >> anthony: just a little better. [ laughter ] >> valentin: the envy is between brothers. >> anthony: right. is this a destructive envy? do uruguayans want other uruguayans to succeed? >> nacho: yes, as long as they're far enough away. >> valentin: not my neighbor, not in my neighborhood. >> anthony: this is a honest man, i really like him.
>> valentin: i love this uruguayan, he is in mexico, it's great. >> anthony: i feel like i'm talking to myself. ♪ >> anthony: the pizza here is a bizarro stoner hybrid topped with thin chickpea flatbread. why? i don't know. makes sense though. >> nacho: the one on top there is the faina, they usually put faina on top of pizza and mozzarella. >> anthony: really? ♪ >> fermin: we cook this pizza, no cheese on it. he's a vegan so he's -- >> anthony: really? [ laughter ] i don't know if i can work with you. >> valentin: 22
years i'm vegan. >> anthony: vegan? >> valentin: yes, in uruguay. >> anthony: wow, that is a revolutionary position. >> valentin: they used to be vegan too. >> anthony: yeah. >> nacho: you're such an asshole. >> valentin: he used to be a very vegan, believe it. >> anthony: so what did you eat? >> nacho: pizza. >> anthony: yeah, with no cheese. >> nacho: yeah. >> anthony: and this is on health grounds or you hate to hurt animals? >> valentin: i don't know.
>> anthony: okay, if you had to kill fred durst or a cow? or a cow? >> valentin: fred, fred. [ laughter ] >> tuka: look at this one, iggy pop or a cow? >> valentin: i like iggy pop, but i will have
to kill him. >> anthony: no! [ laughter ] >> valentin: i saw him live. >> anthony: oh, no. >> valentin: i just saw him live! >> anthony: you're a monster. you are not my therapist. ♪
>> anthony: yes, yes, i do. >> nacho: this must be the place. >> anthony: his friends say marcello quiben looks german, hence the name of his small neighborhood restaurant parilla el aleman. the beating heart of the place is, of course, the parilla -- a grill where dripping meats of many kinds are slowly cooked over glowing wood coals. >> anthony: why is this an uruguayan thing? why here? i mean, i know you're a cattle country. >> nacho: i think the first settlers, when they came in they realized it was nothing else but raising cattle and they let it grow wild. and they overpopulated and you know, gauchos they would roam the land and they would kill it on the spot and actually cook it -- >> anthony: right there. >> nacho: right there on the spot. and actually a lot of times leave the skin on. >> anthony: really? ♪ >> anthony: morcilla or blood sausage. >> anthony: oh, now this is what it's all about for me, man. every great culture does this. it's moist.
>> nacho: i love it right when you kill it, it's pretty amazing. >> anthony: look, when they kill me, that's the way i want to go. you know, keep the heart beating, pump the blood into the bucket, let the village women come and make sausage. >> anthony: then chorizo, and steak -- gotta have that. in this case, rib eye. >> anthony: you should spend more time in this country. >> nacho: i've been gone for 17, 18 years. >> anthony: yeah. >> nacho: it feels kind of like the same, that's the magic about this place, it feels like travelling to the past. >> anthony: i don't see starbucks on every corner, i don't see mcdonalds. sort of unspoiled, right? this is pretty awesome. i mean, am i missing something? is there something that really sucks about this country that i'm not seeing? >> nacho: i think this society is very patriarchal. and it has a lot of colonial traditions that overshadows its -- >> anthony: yeah, but compared to what? compared to who? who's doing really great in that department? denmark? it's like the happiest country on earth. i hate happy.
i mean, do you want to be surrounded by happy people? >> nacho: do you notice how melancholic this place is? and nostalgic, it's like you walk on the street and it's just like, you feel it. it's like the melancholy, it's -- >> anthony: i like that. ♪ ♪ >> anthony: nacho mattos grew up about 45 minutes north of the capital, in santa lucia, a small town of 16,000 people surrounded by farmland, and cattle, and sheep ranches. >> nacho: i think that as a childhood, it was an incredible place to grow up. you know, like escaping and going fishing on the river, and it's pretty safe, you know, like the doors were always open. but i didn't feel like i fit in at all.
and i needed to find a place and a way to express myself. we were raised -- it's very liberal, but at the same time it's conservative. as a teenager, it was kind of like, everything's the same, it just didn't feel that interesting and it wasn't fun as a teenager. >> anthony: his family own a dairy farm just outside of town. nacho's mother, gloria, runs the farm, along with his brother, leandro. nacho's sister, rocio, lives in montevideo but comes home often for family meals like this. >> anthony: what's the name of this town? you grew up here, this house? >> nacho: santa lucia. yup. >> anthony: you grew up in this house? >> nacho: yes, for the most part, yeah. >> anthony: it's beautiful. why would you ever leave this place? it's fantastic. >> gloria: he never like this place. >> anthony: no? >> gloria: no, never. >> rocio: i felt like he had like anger of being on such a small town. he always had been on the front. >> nacho: i couldn't fit in here, so i get out of the house. and i actually called her and say that i wanted to go to
culinary school, this is what i want to do. any support and i'll pay you back. and one year goes and i drop it to go work for francis. >> anthony: i love that you went from being a vegan to working with francis mallman, who is like the satan of vegans. what was at the dinner table when you grew up? >> nacho: mom wasn't that skillful. in the kitchen. >> anthony: that's cold, man. >> nacho: i know, but it's the truth. she was the one in charge. >> anthony: so you grew up eating a lot of italian food? >> nacho: yes. >> anthony: nacho's grandmother, ercillia, was born here -- the child of italian immigrants. >> nacho: i grew up around my grandmother, like constantly cooking. and that was her form of affection, in a way of like showing that she cared and she loved you. >> nacho: is it good? >> grandma: yes, it's good, but if it's too soft, it's not going to work.
♪ ♪ >> anthony: her tuco, her version of sunday gravy, is made from pancetta, cured pork ribs and hunks of beef, simmered for hours. >> anthony: there's also matambre, a local specialty of rolled, stuffed beef, served alongside russian salad. >> anthony: so when did you start cooking? >> nacho: i think it was like my mom got divorced and i realized that she needed help and i start cooking as a way -- yeah, support. then i decide to become vegan, and she was like, she threw the towel and i was like, i just start cooking for us. so i start taking the initiative and start cooking vegan food. >> anthony: well, you had to because you were the only vegan in all of uruguay. ♪
>> anthony: how often does he come back? >> gloria: two years. >> anthony: in two years? >> nacho: i like it, i like it. i like it in a different way. i like it, i like it, far away. [ laughter ] >> rocio: if he would find the thing to do here, he'll be happy but the things he wants to do are not here. >> clo: beautiful, leandro, eh? yes. >> anthony: yeah, it's good. >> nacho: it's so comforting. >> anthony: yeah. this makes me happy. ♪ when we started our business we were paying an arm and a leg for postage. i remember setting up shipstation. one or two clicks and everything was up and running. i was printing out labels and saving money. shipstation saves us so much time. it makes it really easy and seamless. pick an order, print everything you need, slap the label onto the box, and it's ready to go.
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>> anthony: a couple of hours east of montevideo, the coast. and the seaside towns of high gloss, big money punta del este,and the slightly more laidback jose ignacio -- once a sleepy fishing village and now a hamptonian vacation hot spot for the moneyed class from all over the world. ♪ ♪ >> anthony: cantina del vigia thankfully is open in the off season. diego robino is a film producer and occasional fisherman. and clo dimet is a chef and owner of posada in jose ignacio. >> anthony: so what town is this, where am i? >> nacho: this is maldonado. >> anthony: maldonado. >> nacho: and this is like the capital of all these fancy beach towns, but this is where the working class people live.
>> diego: this is where most people live, all the year. >> anthony: cantina's chef-owner is federico desseno. like nacho, another francis mallmann veteran. diego brought some fish he caught today. we got empanadas with corn and shredded, slow-cooked beef. >> anthony: oh, nice, love it. liking this meal already. >> anthony: there's goat cheese, and spinach croquettes. >> anthony: nice. >> nacho: so this is the catch. >> anthony: look at that. >> diego: this is the catch of the day. >> anthony: beautiful. >> nacho: so today, diego went, one of the roughest days in the ocean to get fish somehow. talking about like hard work, i mean the kitchen is hard but like, fishermen? >> clo: the fact that you are alone in the middle of the ocean with all this testosterone around you. >> diego: that's why we play soccer. ♪ >> anthony: there are two wood-fired ovens producing this thing provaleta, a beautiful slab of cheese, which puffs up and inflates in the heat.
>> anthony: wow. whoa, this is the cheese? >> diego: this is the cheese. normally, if you are doing a grill with friends, this is the only thing you will get that is not meat. >> anthony: whole roasted, suckling wild boar. ♪ >> anthony: wow, that's spectacular. >> anthony: and whole-roasted fish. >> chef: fish. >> anthony: wow. wow, that's beautiful fish. >> anthony: and milanesa. here in uruguay, not veal as in italy, but a pounded, breaded, and fried hunk of beef, covered in tomato sauce, ham, and melted mozzarella cheese. >> anthony: whoa, more cheese, all right. >> clo: milanesa. >> chef: this is milanesa napolitana. >> anthony: right. >> chef: and it's typical dish and the people here eat a lot this milanesa. >> clo: we grow up with this.
♪ ♪ >> nacho: how much are you loving uruguay? you still loving it or you change your mind? >> anthony: i love it. it's beautiful. laid back. >> nacho: you haven't changed your mind a little bit? >> anthony: no. feel tense about anything, i smoke a little weed and i feel better. >> nacho: yup. hey, i'm getting hungry actually. >> anthony: yeah, what's on the menu tonight? got some quinoa? maybe some quinoa? >> nacho: i don't think it exists, quinoa here. you might see it in some health store. >> anthony: i don't even know what it is. i don't know that i've ever had it. it's like i used to really like kale, i used to love kale, but now i don't want to eat it because -- >> nacho: it's pretty annoying. >> anthony: they're making like smoothies out of this shit. are we doing steak? >> nacho: if we can do steak, that's what we eat here.
that's what we have. >> anthony: yeah. yeah, i was thinking just off the top of my head, "what do i want tonight? uh, how about meat? yeah, yeah, meat." [ engine turning ] >> nacho: i know where to go actually, never been. this friend told me about it, but the funny thing is it's a drive-thru. >> anthony: drive-thru steak? ♪ >> nacho: i know, like, i'm as surprised as you are. >> anthony: cocktails, can we get cocktails in the drive-thru? >> nacho: i doubt it, but i'm sure we can get some beers. >> anthony: all right, steak it is. >> nacho: let's do it. ♪ >> anthony: diego wants you to know that his other car is a ferrari. >> diego: hey, what's up, man? ♪ ♪
♪ ♪ >> anthony: la caracola is a party space on a strip of sand about ten minutes outside jose ignacio. the ocean on one side, a lagoon on the other. during the high season, it's a regular hang out for over-the-top asados. today, nacho is supervising a meal for a bunch of friends. ♪ >> anthony: hey, guys. ♪
>> anthony: what's going on in here? hey, how's it going? >> nacho: so this is martin. >> anthony: hey, how are you? >> anthony: martin pittaluca is the co-owner of la huella, a restaurant in town that also serves as the mothership for this place. >> anthony: man, what a spot. the weather is good? >> martin: the weather is difficult, but beautiful. you can stay the whole day. you know, you arrive at 2:00 and you leave at 9:00. >> anthony: nice. so, jefe, what's cooking? ♪ >> nacho: so this is one of the spots with the fire oven. >> anthony: wow, look at the whole fish baked in salt. >> nacho: yes. ♪ >> nacho: whole rib eyes, flanks. >> anthony: rib eyes. wow. >> nacho: some suckling pig. some snack. >> anthony: that's no snack, man, that's a meal right there. wow. >> nacho: do you wanna help in the kitchen, or? >> anthony: carving, yeah, man. >> nacho: all right. ♪ anthony: everybody's here.
fermin and the guys from the band, lucia, federico, diego, and it's time to eat. >> anthony: oh, yeah. come on, that's perfect, right? >> lucia: nice. >> anthony: so how long has this place been here? >> martin: about 12 years. >> anthony: started as like a shack or a house? or? >> martin: it used to be a little house on the beach with a bar. you're not allowed to build here anymore, so we bought all this land and that's the only thing we can do. ♪ ♪ >> anthony: and the food is delicious. >> lucia: yeah. >> anthony: look at us out here, on a sand bar. in the middle of nowhere. eating like gods. >> lucia: but this is what i love about uruguay, no?
then suddenly you take a drive, even like one hour and a half, and you're in a different world. >> anthony: good to see. i mean, it's really exciting here. i love it here. every day he asks me, "are you sure --" >> nacho: hold on, hold on, hold on. >> anthony: every day. >> nacho: do you really love it, tony? >> anthony: every day. ♪ ♪
this is cnn breaking news. >> 4:00 a.m. on the u.s. east coast and we're following breaking news out of accessory lavin ca. at least 137 people have been killed in six explosions according to officials there. more than 500 people have been wounded. i'm george howell at the cnn center in atlanta. welcome to viewers here in the united states and around the world. state media in sri lanka report three explosions were at hotels, three others were at churches. and keep this in mind. the background important. all of this seems to be a coordinated set