In those heady days of “Ready Steady Cook” there you were in the background, making the odd insulting comment from your restaurant kitchen. Ainsley Harriott was a “clown”, Worral Thompson “The Squashed Bee Gee”, and all the so called “celebrity chefs” on shows of its type were “jokers”. I’ll admit it, your comments made me laugh. There you were running a Michelin starred restaurant and concentrating on the cooking whilst when you had a spare moment lambasting those who were cooking for the sake of entertainment and ratings. I respected you for it; your sneery jibes were a tonic to the beige middle England “entertainment” shows of yore. You were an angry chef, a real chef, a macho chef. Hell, my Wife wanted to sleep with you. I mean shit, I wanted to sleep with you. Ok well, I wanted to cook with you at least.
Suddenly there you were on “Faking it”. The little Geordie guy you trained did fabulously well and it was a cracking programme. Didn’t you get a BAFTA for it or similar? Then came “Kitchen Nightmares” Wow, Ramsay is on TV again, this should be good I thought. And it was. Lots of swearing, entertainment, cooking. Good clean macho fun. And I liked you all the more. I ate in your restaurants, always good. Well, apart from Maze, the less said about that the better.
Then came “Hells Kitchen” and The F-Word”. Hmm, starting to get a little self indulgent here I thought. But no, I stuck with you. Another “Hells Kitchen” came along. It was weak and lame to say the least. A tired format hanging its chefs whites on the hook of your personality. It was at that point that for me you became a caricature of yourself. No longer entertaining but bullying and mean. A boorish reincarnation of the Ramsay I once admired. I’d almost had enough, but not quite.
You were opening restaurants at a great rate and your business seemed to be booming. Fair play to you I thought, use the exposure, the media wont love you forever after all. I still admired you for what you’d created. The restaurants, the jobs, the brand.
Along came Hells Kitchen USA. No Gordon. Whilst your fee might have been fantastic, for me your stock was becoming less consommé and more cold, congealed Bisto. You were getting more TV exposure than Jamie, but whilst Jamie is happy-go-lucky, you were bully-boy-mucky. I found myself shaking my head when I saw your name on the Electronic Programme Guide. Whilst flicking through the channels the sight of your face would ensure a fast click to the next channel. My love affair with brand Ramsay was most definitely over.
I trust this finds you in good spirits and I hope that you decide to do what you have previously done best, that is to cook. As in behind the pass. In a restaurant. Cooking. Impressing with your talent and your culinary creations as opposed to being photographed out with various celebrities, doing chat shows, other “appearances” and the like. I’d like the original Gordon back please. Aubergine Gordon will do. So to paraphrase you, stop fucking about you fucking clown, get back to the kitchen, and get fucking cooking.