Guest Author - Asha Sahni
Gordon Ramsay was born in Scotland but moved to Stratford-upon-Avon, England, aged five. Ramsay has made a name for himself in the UK and abroad as a skilled chef with a keen business acumen which he applies to making restaurants profitable. His firey nature has resulted in a number of TV shows which use his temperament as their selling point including Hell’s Kitchen, Ramsay’s Kitchen Nightmares and The F Word.
Gordon Ramsay had a promising career as a young footballer, but this dream, which had reached the heights of being chosen for Glasgow Rangers, ended due to injury. His ambitions changed focus and he trained in Hotel Management, followed by work with Marco Pierre White and Albert Roux. He spent several years developing his culinary skills in France before returning to London. In 1993 he became part-owner of Aubergine which gained two Michelan stars whilst Ramsay was head chef. His next move was to open his own restaurant – Restaurant Gordon Ramsay on Royal Hospital Road, Cheslea. Ramsay has since opened several other restaurants in London; he also has restaurants in America, Dubai, Ireland and Japan.
The economic downturn saw Ramsay realising that he might have expanded too fast, and deciding to close some of his business interests. Further back in his career he had closed his Glasgow restaurant Amarylis following the death of his protégé David Dempsey. His response to the current economic downturn was an escape to India, which he still managed with a TV crew! Gordon’s Great Escape seems to have taken him back to his roots, cooking and learning from others rather than always being the expert.
Ramsay has written several books - signed copies can be purchased from his website. He has achieved three Michelan stars and was awarded an OBE in the New Year’s Honours List 2006. His charity work includes involvement with VSO and active patronage of the Scottish Spina Bifida association.
His TV portfolio has included intensively coaching and challenging failing restauranters to help them turn their businesses around in Ramsay’s Kitchen Nightmares. He has been a judge and co-producer onAmerican MasterChef (a format originally conceived by the BBC). Hells’s Kitchen , a celebrity cooking knock-out competition which thrived on the harshness of Ramsay’s ideas, ideals and judgements, has transferred successfully to America.
Gordon Ramsay is an interesting mixture of hard and soft – a businessman with high ideals, passionate about his vocation with a rough edge that when polished can create diamonds.