Want to know how to travel in style, just like the pros? We check in with frequent fliers to find out how often they fly, their favorite destinations and what they never leave home without.
Name: Andrew Zimmern
Occupation: Chef, Teacher, Cultural Anthropologist, Author, Serial Entrepreneur, TV producer, Do-Gooder, and part time TV show host
Hometown: NYC, NY
Residence: Edina, MN
College: Vassar College
College major: History and Art History
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Short bio: A three-time James Beard Award-winning TV personality, chef, writer and teacher. I’m the creator, executive producer and host of the Bizarre Foods franchise on Travel Channel (including Bizarre Foods with Andrew Zimmern, Andrew Zimmern’s Bizarre World, Bizarre Foods America and the new Bizarre Foods: Delicious Destinations). I’ve explored cultures in more than 150 countries.
I am the founder of two multi-media production companies: Food Works and Intuitive Content. Food Works creates all content other than TV productions and Intuitive Content creates long format content for cable and network broadcast.
I partnered in 2014 with CHEFS Catalog to design a collection of premium, handcrafted cookware, spices, and accessories. Andrew Zimmern’s Canteen is a fast casual concept I launched in 2012, and includes a food truck and locations at various sports complexes, including Minnesota’s Target Field and Viking Stadium, and Kaufman Stadium, home of the Kansas City Royals.
I’ve written three books: “The Bizarre Truth,” “Andrew Zimmern’s Bizarre World of Food” and “Andrew Zimmern’s Field Guide to Exceptionally Weird, Wild & Wonderful Foods.” In addition to my title as contributing editor, Food & Wine Magazine also named me as a Chef-in-Residence in 2014, and I continue to work with Delta Sky Magazine as a senior editor. I’m an Entrepreneur in Residence at Babson College’s Lewis Institute and I sit on the board of directors for Services for the Underserved in New York City, The Taste of the NFL, Foodie Tout, and The National Youth Recovery Foundation. I’m an honorary board member and Advisor to the Alliance for Coffee Excellence. In my rare downtime, I relax at home in Minneapolis, MN, with my wife, son and two uneaten pets.
How often do you fly? All the time. Right now I am doing seven flights in six days.
How many countries have you been to? Over 150.
How many continents have you been to? All but Antarctica.
Earliest travel memory: 1966 skiing in Vermont with my father.
Favorite American city: NYC, NY.
Favorite international city: Beijing.
Least favorite country: Still haven’t found it.
I have no desire to go to: Anywhere I’m told to. I have issues.
Friendliest people in the world: Mexicans and Filipinos.
Country with the meanest immigration officers: Canada.
Favorite World Heritage Site: Palmyra…and the Souk at Aleppo. Sadly both being destroyed.
Favorite airline: Delta and Emirates.
Favorite aircraft type: Emirates Dreamliner or anything private.
Aisle or window: Aisle.
Favorite airport lounge: Abu Dhabi Etihad Lounge, JFK Virgin Atlantic, Delta Narita.
Favorite U.S. airport: MSP International.
Favorite international airport: Schiphol in Amsterdam. I spend so much time there I feel at home.
Favorite hotel: NoMad NYC, NY.
Favorite cruise line: I hate cruises, I feel trapped.
Favorite travel credit card: American Express.
Favorite island: Bali.
Favorite beach: Lalumanu Beach, Samoa and Georgica Beach, East Hampton, NY.
Favorite fancy restaurant: Arpege, D.O.M, Daniel, French Laundry, Alinea, Next, Eleven Madison Park, Gagnaire, Mugaritz, Narisawa.
Favorite hole-in-the-wall: Mary’s Laksa, Singapore.
Favorite bar: NoMad.
Favorite fruit: Honeycrisp apples.
Favorite food: Perfect roast chicken and gravy.
Least favorite food: Anything cooked by someone who doesn’t give a shit.
Drink of choice (in the air and on the ground): San Pellegrino.
Favorite travel movie(s): Planes, Trains and Automobiles.
Favorite travel show(s): I can’t watch them.
Favorite travel book(s): Somerset Maugham’s “South Seas” short stories.
Right now I am reading: Tony Horowitz’s “Confederates in the Attic.”
Top 3 favorite travel newsletters/magazines/blogs: Roads and Kingdoms, Lucky Peach, Serious Eats, Food & Wine, Travel & Leisure.
Favorite travel website(s)—besides JohnnyJet.com, of course! I hate to tell you I couldn’t name one.
5 things you bring on a plane: Chargers and batteries, my laptop, skull cap for my cold head, Emergen-C, stack of old New Yorker magazines.
What do you always seem to forget? What city I am in.
What do you like least about travel? Being away from my son.
What do you want your loved one to buy you from an airport Duty Free store? Bassets Wine Gummies, anything Haribo, Dutch and Danish Licorice.
Favorite travel app(s): iTranslate, SAS Survival Guide, Uber.
Most embarrassing travel moment: Shitting my pants in the Lima Peru airport at 3 am during an overnight layover, sick as a dog, after I spent a week crawling out of a jungle. Finally getting cleaned and changed and having a fan come up to me who had been “politely’ watching and waiting for a break in my “action” to ask for an autograph.
I’m embarrassed but I haven’t been to: Prague.
Worst travel moment: All the times I almost died. Samoa ocean crossing in a tin can in 20 foot seas, falling off Table Mountain in Cape Town, being shot at in Venezuela…the usual.
What’s your dream destination? My own bed with 3 or 4 unwatched episode of Game of Thrones on the DVR.
Best travel tip: Smile.