03 July 2006

[distractions] Gordon Ramsay, Straight Up

In search of something to satisfy our Chef Ramsay jones generated by the lack of a Hell's Kitchen epi this week, we stumbled on this interesting little item.

One of the criticisms we've heard of the Chef is that his act is just that–an act, some version of himself amped up just to give the public what it wants. It's a charge that's been levelled at home as well as here in America.

Last November, according to The Associated Press, a leading UK daily, The Evening Standard, made the accusation that another Ramsay media effort, Ramsay's Kitchen Nightmares, a show in which the Chef steps in to ailing restaurants and puts them to right, was faked in many ways; the restaurants and kitchens were, contrary to appearance, within code and actually adequately run and were faked up to look bad. Moreover, the publication accused that, in one instance, the production had actually gone so far as to install a substandard chef in a failing English bistro called Bonaparte's.

According to AP's account, Chef Ramsay won his libel suit against the paper in late June, garnering USD 138,000 in damages and printed apologies in The Evening Standard as well as an apparent public acknoweldgement of error.

The AP gave Chef the last word, quoting him as saying: "I won't let people write anything they want to about me. Even I have limits and on this occasion the line was crossed."

As far as we go, we're hoping to find Ramsay's Kitchen Nightmares on DVD somewhere.

(References: Slashfood.com, The Cincinnati Enquirer. Image reference: Slashfood.com.)

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