Andrew Zimmern Loves Fermented Walrus Anus But Not These 10 Things

As a former Food Network star and four-time James Beard award-winning TV personality, Andrew Zimmern has a reputation for eating just about anything. The acclaimed food critic is best known as the co-creator and host of his Travel Channel’s series Bizarre Foods. Continuing his love for food and adventure, Zimmern appeared in a five-episode TV series on MSNBC called What’s Eating America with Andrew Zimmern in early 2020. The culinary expert loves some unusual dishes, but these won’t eat these 10 things. 

Andrew Zimmern smiling in front of an orange background
Andrew Zimmern | Noam Galai/Getty Images

Zimmern steers clear of spoiled and fermented foods

On his journey to find and try the strangest foods across the globe, he’s decided he’ll pass on these 10 foods he won’t eat, according to The Travel. While this one is not due to the taste, Zimmern will not touch cumin after contracting a virus from eating tainted cumin while in Northern Africa. 

Another food he’ll steer clear from is rotten canned fish — understandably! On a visit to Cypress and Stockholm, Zimmern discovered surstromming, a fish that is native in Sweden that is fermented in a can. He cannot eat it because he says it smells so horrible. While he’s steering clear of fish, you can count out Hakarl, one of Iceland’s most famous dishes. After trying the fermented shark, Zimmern rated it as one of the worst things he’d ever tasted. 

He also won’t be eating rotten chicken innards, after he was served the dish at someone’s home, but there were colored spots on the intestines, indicating a diseased chicken. Another spoiled food he won’t eat? Taipei’s famous street food: stinky tofu.

Zimmern has some stinky snacks he steers clear of

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You won’t find Zimmern eating durian fruit, although durian is a popular snack in Southeast Asia, it is on Zimmern’s will not eat list. It is another food that has an extremely pungent odor, and he had a hard time eating it on his trip to Indonesia. Besides its strong scent, the fruit also has a threatening exterior with his sharp green-brown thorns. 

During season 4 of Bizarre Foods, Zimmern was on the hunt for rural Thai food. While he was hesitant about trying the bamboo rat, after a local chef salted and put it on the grill, he was game. That was until he split the bamboo rat open and was hit with an overpowering smell, which he then added to his never eat again list. 

As for some fairly common American foods, you would think a person who likes some bizarre foods wouldn’t mind oatmeal, raw cookie dough, or walnuts, but he told People that he “Won’t eat ’em, can’t stand ’em.”

3 Unusual Foods Zimmern Loves

Being the man who eats almost anything, it shouldn’t be surprising that these three unusual foods are at the top of his list. 

When asked about his dislike for the three fairly basic foods listed above, Zimmern said, I love fermented walrus anus, so I get to not like some things.” Another food he’s partial to is fried tarantulas. Zimmern’s signature stamp of recommending fried tarantulas will still have many passing on the offer. However, the locals of a small village in Cambodia routinely eat these creepy-crawler treats. 

Zimmern’s idea of taco Tuesday is a little different from others with his favorite pork brain tacos. In some instances, offal (pork brains) is somewhat of a delicacy. Zimmern first tried pork brain tacos when he went to Mexico and has been hooked ever since. He told The Travel Channel that “The brains are so creamy, they’re just like meat butter.”