Incanto chef Chris Cosentino makes a fashion statement at the Aspen Food & Wine Classic: “I Am Ruth Bourdain.”

Incanto chef Chris Cosentino makes a fashion statement at the Aspen Food & Wine Classic: “I Am Ruth Bourdain.”

Anthony Bourdain on Ruth Bourdain

I think I know, and it ain’t that hard to figure out, but I really don’t want to know. I’m pushing it out of my brain. I hope he/she has a long and glorious career doing exactly what he/she is doing. Just the repartee between Ruth Bourdain and Tom Colicchio makes it all worthwhile. So, I don’t want to know. I’ve expunged it. Anyone who tells me who it is or who they think it is, I’ve pushed it out of my brain and I don’t want to hear it and I don’t want to know.

Watch Anthony Bourdain Hold Court at a Barnes and Noble [Eater]

Whoever he or she is, Ruth Bourdain wins a Beard

Ruth Bourdain: acerbic, androgynous, foul-mouthed, totally fictitious and now…? James Beard Foundation winner.

On Friday, the so-called Oscars of the food world honored Ruth Bourdain — the made-up online mash-up of culinary icons Ruth Reichl and Anthony Bourdain — with its first ever award for humor writing.

In some ways the award was a nod not just to the still anonymous man or woman behind the profanely funny spoof of wise-cracking Bourdain and former Gourmet magazine editor-in-chief Reichl. It also recognized the rising power of social media in food. Ruth Bourdain became a sensation during the past year almost exclusively by posting biting 140-character messages (most of them unfit to reprint) on Twitter.

Bravo: "Who is @RuthBourdain?"

"Oh, I just love the fact that RuthBourdain has been nominated for a Beard Award," Reichl squealed.

Reichl said she was glad the handle could bring a little levity to the awards show, and is really pulling for the mysterious tweeter to win, not only because she loves the Tweets, but to figure the true identity.

"I’m really hoping that he/she will win and will come forward to accept, and we will find out who it is."

Whether or not the masked humorist accepts the award in a gorilla mask (as Banksy said he would), Reichl has some ideas about the identity. Though she wouldn’t go so far as to name names, she did give us a clue.

"I have theories about who it isn’t," Reichl said. "There is actually a little suspicion in the back of mind that it may be one of the people who was a judge this year."

LA Weekly: Ruth Reichl on Ruth Bourdain

Not only does she enjoy the mystery tweeter who mashes up her tweets with those of Anthony Bourdain, Reichl is pulling for the handle to win the James Beard Award for humor. Who does Reichl think is behind the spoof? She claims to not know, but says she has a suspicion it’s actually someone who serves as a guest judge this season.

Ruth on Ruth

ELAINE: What do you think of Ruth Bourdain getting nominated for a James Beard Award this year for Humor?

RUTH: I think it’s great! I agree with Tony Bourdain! If we can’t have fun with food, what are we gonna have fun with? I hope he/she wins so they’ll have to get up and accept the award!

But I actually think it’s a “he,” and I don’t think it’s any of the people that have been talked about. I think all the theories about who this person is are all wrong.