The 61-year-old award-winning chef and author died in an apparent suicide and was found unresponsive by a friend on Friday morning in his hotel room in the Alsace region of northeast France, where he was filming an episode of his CNN series “Parts Unknown,” the network confirmed.
Bourdain appeared to have hanged himself, according to Christian de Rocquigny du Fayel, the prosecutor of Colmar in Alsace region, southeast of Kaysersberg.
Obama famously appeared on a 2016 episode of “Parts Unknown” during the then-president’s visit to Hanoi, Vietnam and he shared a photo on Twitter of the pair drinking beer and dining together.
At the time Bourdain shared a photo of their encounter and tweeted, “Low plastic stool, cheap but delicious noodles, cold Hanoi beer” — words that Obama referenced in his tribute.
Bun Cha Huong Lien, the restaurant where Obama and Bourdain talked life and politics over a meal of noodles and beer, has become a popular tourist destination and the owners even enshrined their table in a thick glass frame.
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