Celebrity chef Anthony Bourdain says America's restaurant industry would shut down if Donald TrumpDonald TrumpJan. 6 panel plans to subpoena Trump lawyer who advised on how to overturn election Texans chairman apologizes for 'China virus' remark Biden invokes Trump in bid to boost McAuliffe ahead of Election Day MORE won the 2016 presidential election.
Bourdain blasted Trump's vow to deport illegal immigrants if elected, saying it would leave the nation's kitchens empty.
“If Mr. Trump deports 11 million people or whatever he is talking about right now, every restaurant in America would shut down,” he told host Pete Dominick on Sirius XM’s “Stand Up!” on Wednesday.
“Like a lot of other white kids, I rolled out of a prestigious culinary institute and went to work in real restaurants,” Bourdain said.
“Walking into restaurants, the person who had been there the longest and took the time to show me how it was done was always Mexican or Central American,” he added.“[They are] the backbone of the industry."
Bourdain cited his 30 years in the culinary industry and time as a restaurant executive.
“Twenty of those years, I was a manager and employer,” he said. "Never in any of those years, not once, did any American-born kid walk into my restaurant and say, ‘I’d like a job as a night porter or a dishwasher or even a prep cook.’
“[They were] few and far between [and] not willing to start at the bottom like that,” the host of CNN’s “Parts Unknown” added.
Bourdain also said Trump's rhetoric was the wrong way to debate an important policy issue.
“The wall idea is ridiculous,” he said, referencing the billionaire’s repeated vows to build a wall on the southern border if elected president.
“Serious minds can disagree over what we want to do in the future, as far as how tightly we control the border and how many more people we want to let in,” Bourdain said. “We’re a country of immigrants. That’s how we were formed.
“For the people who have been living here and have been so much a part of our lives and have nothing but do their best to achieve the American dream and raise their families and enrich our culture, there should be an easy path to legality,” he added.
Asked if most restaurant owners share his views on immigration, Bourdain responded, "Yeah, because they’d be up the creek."
Trump has repeatedly called for deporting every illegal immigrant in the U.S. since launching his GOP White House run in June.
Celebrity chef Jose Andre, who is a Spanish immigrant, backed out of plans to create a restaurant for one of the real estate tycoon’s properties in Washington, D.C., after Trump's remarks.