- Awesome Music: The California desert special with Josh Homme from Queens of the Stone Age is mostly soundtracked with music from the first QoTSA album, plus some brand new compositions created during the filming of the show.
- Crazy Awesome:
- The molecular gastronomy chefs (think Mad Scientist / Mad Artist with food: "What if we made a mojito that looks like an egg yolk and melts on your tongue? What if we made a BBQ dish that looks like road kill? What if we deconstructed clam chowder? (Madness! Blasphemy!!) What if we added cotton candy and flash-froze everything?") and the secretive foodie club known as Gypsy, who prefer non-USDA-approved food ("This cheese was smuggled from France in my kid's diaper bag!") in non-USDA-approved settings (if I recall correctly, the meeting places are private homes which are considered temporary restaurants since a home wouldn't be hygienic enough to sell food.)
- His visit to The French Laundry provided Bourdain and his three guests with one entirely different 20 course meal for each person (80 plates in total) without repeating a single ingredient. Thomas Keller even made a nicotine sorbet out of Bourdain's favourite brand of cigarettes, exclusive to him.
- Let's face it, Tony is this trope just a little bit.
- Ensemble Dark Horse: Zamir, who was "just" a fixer. Possibly Played for Laughs in Buffalo in the "Rust Belt" episode, where Tony's shocked that Zamir has groupies of all things, wondering if Zamir's past shows had made him look like the Bad Boy Party Guy of the show. The groupies show Zamir affection, and he reciprocates — which has Tony all the more stunned.
- Harsher in Hindsight:
- Tony's said some pretty rude things about Jamie Oliver, mostly due to his lack of respect for the majority of "celebrity chefs". Then he found out Oliver is dyslexic and Kitchen Confidential was and remains the only book Oliver's ever read from cover to cover. Tony's since apologized.
- The Japan episode from season seven, shot just days before a severe earthquake destroyed much of the country.
- The Sweden episode ends on Tony fashioning a noose in his jail cell since all they play there is ABBA. Fast forward to June 8, 2018...
- Hilarious in Hindsight: A more lighthearted part of the Sweden episode mentioned above is the beginning, which has a fauxlosophic conversation between a man and a woman, parodying Ingmar Bergman films,note which ends with the woman saying "I heard ABBA is considering a reunion tour," there's a long beat before the man says "...Really?" ABBA would actually announce their reunion in April 2018.
- More Popular Spin-Off: Of A Cook's Tour.
- Nightmare Fuel: A chef from New Orleans snuck back into the city after hurricane Katrina while it was still under martial law to see how damaged his once newly-opened restaurant was. The video he took of his broken, flooded, rotting-food-filled freezer is horrifying, and the whole pig in the "present-day" doesn't help.
- He'll taste anything people offer him.
- What really weirds him out is Las Vegas' sanitized versions of Venice and New York, although he did like being able to smoke in "New York".
- According to Tony on The Colbert Report:"You know, people ask all the time, Whats the most exotic, or unusual, or grotesque food youve ever eaten? And I still maintain its pretty hard to beat, for sheer grotesqueness and bizarreness, you know, a Cinnabon."
- He's also gone on record saying that the worst things he's ever eaten were the barely washed warthog anus in Namibia, the kæstur hákarl (putrified and fermented shark) in Iceland and a Chicken McNugget.
- Tear Jerker: The Haiti episode, shot after the 2010 earthquake.
- What Do You Mean, It's Not for Kids?: It may only be rated TV-PG, but it's so far apart from the usual Travel Channel fare that each segment starts with a parental discretion warning.
YMMV / No Reservations