Since completing university, Paul has worked as a librarian, teacher, and freelance writer. Born in the UK, he currently lives in Florida.
It can be difficult to escape British chef, restaurant owner, and television personality, Gordon Ramsay nowadays.
He's regularly seen either presenting a new show, being interviewed, making a guest appearance on another show, opening or closing one of his many restaurants, or hitting the tabloid newspaper headlines with lurid stories about his alleged affairs, business troubles, or family conflicts.
The thoughts below are my own personal opinions, but I am sure that I am not alone in finding Chef Gordon Ramsay a very difficult and complex character who inspires mixed feelings and reactions, from warmth and admiration to irritation and even anger.
Here are 10 reasons why I love and hate Gordon Ramsay:
10 Reasons to Love Gordon Ramsay
1. Hard working
Nobody could fault Gordon Ramsay for his work ethic. He is an extremely hard grafter. This has no doubt contributed to his successes as a cook, restaurant owner and tv personality. He once tweeted that "Work ethic is all about finding your passion".
2. No nonsense
He is tough and doesn’t take any nonsense from people. It is amusing to see people trying on their B.S. with him on shows like Kitchen Nightmares. Ramsay s always focused on getting the job done and has no time for weak excuses.
Chef Ramsay gives out genuine and useful insights on the restaurant and hotel trade on his T.V. shows, such as Kitchen Nightmares. He brings home how much has to come together for a business to be successful, including customer service, location, marketing, having great food, and effective management. He has achieved results in helping people turn around their struggling businesses.
4. Brutal honesty
Chef Ramsay speaks his mind and tells the truth, even if sometimes the people he is talking to don’t want to hear it. While this can be interpreted by some as rude or insensitive behavior, it can actually be a useful thing for people who are learning to cook, or trying to revive their business to hear.
Ramsay generally comes across as straightforward and natural in his demeanor. There is little that could be seen as fake. Behavior like his cursing is part of his personality and charm and is the way that people speak in hot, stressful kitchens.
Despite having received a lot of criticism over the years for various elements of his character and behavior, few dispute that Ramsay is a dedicated, experienced and outstanding chef and restauranteur. He can create wonderful dishes and his businesses continues to be awarded Michelin stars.
7. Experience of the industry
When it comes to eating establishments, Chef Ramsay knows what he’s talking about. This sets him apart from a lot of the celebrity chefs that you see on television, who can often be 95% personality and only 5% cookery and restaurant skills.
8. Rags to riches success story
Ramsay started out with nothing, had a tough family life and background, and suffered disappointment in his first career as a football player in Scotland. Yet still, he managed to work his way up through the ranks of the restaurant trade and reach the top by the time he was forty.
He's done a lot of great work for charities over the years, working with organizations and taking part in events such as running marathons. He worked with inmates of Brixton Prison with the aim of teaching them how to cook.
10. High standards
Gordon Ramsay is ruthless in his criticism of eating establishments with low standards. He passionately asserts that restaurant customers should be able to expect high quality when it comes to food, cleanliness, and customer service on his television shows.
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I think every chef, not just in America, but across the world, has a double-edged sword - two jackets, one that's driven, a self-confessed perfectionist, thoroughbred, hate incompetence and switch off the stove, take off the jacket and become a family man.
— Gordon Ramsay
10 Reasons to Hate Gordon Ramsay
Gordon Ramsay has some very strong views and has been accused of showing prejudice against certain groups of people. For instance, he's been accused of misogyny and sexism, and once tricked a vegetarian into eating meat as a cruel joke.
Ramsay has been accused of bullying numerous times. His rants and meltdowns, always filled with F-bombs and insults, glorify bad behavior and set a terrible example. Restaurant reviewer Jay Rayner described the Scottish chef as "a sad, inadequate man" and "everything that has been wrong about restaurant kitchen culture".
Chef Ramsay often uses crude language and constantly curses. This behavior is unnecessary and sets a bad example for children and adults alike. During the run of his show Uncharted, The Sun newspaper calculated that he dropped the F-bomb 212 times, breaking his own record.
4. Unhappy family
While Ramsay pushes an image of himself as a happy family man, the reality doesn't always fit neatly with this. He let slip one time that his marriage was a rollercoaster (see #9). His father-in-law stole money from the business that he owned with Ramsay and was later jailed for hacking into company computers to steal information.
5. Business failures
While Ramsay loves to dish out advice to struggling restaurant owners, the truth is that he's had his own share of business failures over the years. He also has a poor track record with saving other people's restaurants. 79 percent of the eateries that Ramsay tried to rescue have closed since their episodes aired, as of May 2020, according to Reality TV Revisited.
While there's little doubt regarding Gordon Ramsay's credentials as a chef and restauranteur, he clearly loves being in the public eye and the center of attention. He pops up everywhere on British and US T.V. presenting his shows, appearing talk shows, and making guest appearances. This is despite him being critical of celebrity chef T.V. culture.
Chef Gordon Ramsay seems to revel in his sex symbol image, flaunting it at every opportunity. There's been a lot of gossip about him having cosmetic surgery over the years. Most of the wrinkles appear to have gone from his face and his thinning hair has been restored. He is a chef, not a male model, or a movie star, and his excessive vanity seems inappropriate.
8. Bad Human
While he's always been careful to nurture his public image, rumors have abounded for years that the private Ramsay is not so nice. He once threw food critic A. A. Gill out of his restaurants for making a personal insult, which is ironic given Ramsay's regular verbal mistreatment of others. Gill said of the incident that: "Ramsay is a wonderful chef, just a really second-rate human being."
There have been numerous allegations and rumors made in the newspapers that suggest Ramsay has been unfaithful to his wife with at least three other women. These include a lady called Sarah Symonds who claimed she had a clandestine, on-off relationship with the married chef for seven years.
Ramsay has been accused of being dishonest about his past in order to drum up publicity for his restaurants. For instance, he has previously claimed that he played two first team games for the Glasgow Rangers soccer team in Scotland before getting injured, but the team’s historians say that he was never signed for the team.
Find what's hot, find what's just opened and then look for the worst review of the week. There is so much to learn from watching a restaurant getting absolutely panned and having a bad experience. Go and see it for yourself.
— Gordon Ramsay
I've had a lot of success; I've had failures, so I learn from the failure.
— Gordon Ramsay
Key Events From Gordon Ramsay's Life
- Ramsay was born 8 November 1966 in Johnstone, Renfrewshire, Scotland.
- He was raised in Stratford-upon-Avon, Warwickshire, England. His mother was a nurse. His father was an alcoholic and could be violent at times, he drifted between a variety of jobs. The family also moved around a lot during Ramsay's childhood.
- Ramsay had a brief career as a footballer, taking trials for Glasgow Rangers, but had to give up after numerous injuries.
- Aged 19, he went to catering college and became a chef, working in London and Paris.
- Ramsay returned to London in 1993. Shortly after, with the help of Marco Pierre White, he became joint owner of Aubergine restaurant.
- He fell out with his business partners, however, and left Aubergine. A short time later, he opened his own restaurant with financial backing from his father-in-law. This restaurant gained its third Michelin star in 2001 and was a great success.
- Ramsay's restaurant empire rapidly expanded around the world.
- During this time, he also began his television career, initially in the UK and later in the USA.
Swearing is industry language. For as long as we're alive it's not going to change. You've got to be boisterous to get results.
— Gordon Ramsay
Gordon Ramsay FAQ
What is Gordon Ramsay's signature dish?
His signature dish, as stated by the Gordon Ramsay Restaurants website, is Beef Wellington. The dish is served at Ramsay's restaurants across the world.
How did Gordon Ramsay get famous?
Ramsay's first widespread exposure to the public occurred in 1999 when he appeared on the British fly-on-the-kitchen-wall documentary: Boiling Point, although he had previously been a judge on a cooking competition show a couple of years earlier.
What is Gordon Ramsay's favorite American food?
In 2018, Ramsay told Steve Colbert that the American food that he missed the most whenever he was in the UK was grits topped with shrimp and Parmesan cheese.
How many restaurants does Gordon Ramsay have?
At the time of writing, Ramsay has 35 restaurants, including the flagship venue Restaurant Gordon Ramsay, which has held three Michelin-stars for more than 2 decades.
The pressure on young chefs today is far greater than ever before in terms of social skills, marketing skills, cooking skills, personality and, more importantly, delivering on the plate. So you need to be strong. Physically fit. So my chefs get weighed every time they come into the kitchen.
— Gordon Ramsay
© 2011 Paul Goodman
Catcando62 on June 28, 2019:
I have your books I watched your ultimate cooking guide but I feel you exploited some of the extriveingly chef for entertainment purposes because they draw you in
night time soap opera
Matthew on March 12, 2019:
Paul you're an absolute jealous prick with no backbone. Who are you to comment on Gordon when you've NEVER worked in a restaurant nor kitchen before??? Why don't you go listen to Gordon's mentor Marco Piere White on how hard it is in high end restaurants, do some research before you post this ball less garbage. "Some of his remarks against women are offensive", why's that cause you're one of the mass morons who thinks women should be respected on a different level than men??? You're a douche bag! I hope you haven't spawned any kids cause you're bloodline should be stopped immediately.
unknown on October 19, 2018:
there are somethings what i like about gordan but its so difficult to consider him as a role model because of his swaering and arrogance to other chefs and honestly meeting gordan ramsey in real life is a nightmare
atleast he should low his tone and stop swearing his tone and emotions makes him more like a fucking madman
Jean Bakula from New Jersey on April 01, 2018:
I love Gordon! I think many people think it's easy to own and run a restaurant, and when they realize it's not, lie and cut corners. On Kitchen Nightmares, many are family issues.The Patriarch of a large family expects his children to run the place, once he gets depressed and runs it into the ground. But he doesn't pay them, so he keeps them from growing up, because they are dependent on him. Or a daughter gets her parents to take out a second or third mortgage on their home, and sits at the bar drinking all night, while young, inexperienced cooks run "her" place into bankruptcy. But she tells everyone how independent she is. It's a 20 hr. a day job if it serves lunch and dinner, and you need a lot of experienced help.
styliani on June 25, 2015:
I like his crazy personality... He is very smart and very handsome .....
Gordon is a wonderful chef,and has helped many on their career paths. He also has helped many save their businesses from going under. He has worked so hard to help others get on the right track. On another note...His personal life is none of our business. What he did or didn't do is for him and his family to sort out in private
email@example.com on June 25, 2015:
I like his smile and his pronunciation. I think that he is very clever and very handsome .
Dawg on June 24, 2015:
Honestly the bad points about him was total nonsense
Louise on June 22, 2014:
I hate people like Ramsay. Why do people think that being passionate is an all-purpose excuse to treat people like dirt? The alpha-male "look at how hard I am" schtick does nothing for me. He needs to get over himself. At the end of the day he's just a thug who happens to be able to cook. Or to be more specific, a thug that's a good cook, a shit footballer, and a lousy husband. I thought the way he eliminated the second time on Hell's Kitchen was pure discrimination against her personality. So, she was kind of quiet and didn't want to deal with the world by emoting at it wildly, which is Ramsay's favoured method. Criticize her for her cooking, yes, but lay off the character assassination, the self-righteous self-important piece of crap
devilsrain on September 04, 2012:
The thing that I like about him is that he doesn't give a F about what you or anyone says.
Paul Goodman (author) from Florida USA on April 14, 2012:
He is certainly entertaining and charismatic! :-)
Paul Goodman (author) from Florida USA on April 14, 2012:
Some of the "Nightmare" restaurants he visits - you do wonder why the owner ever thought he/she should be running an eating establishment! I guess there's a romance associated with owning a restaurant for some, but it's a tough business, hard work and difficult to make money from over a long period of time.
mmm on April 14, 2012:
I like Gorden Ramsey but none of the restaurants he saves ever make it after he leaves. 1 out of 20 make it...
lalla on March 19, 2012:
io adoro gordon rasmsay ...........................................................................ciaoooooooooooooo
Kym Roberts on February 24, 2012:
Gordon is a wonderful chef,and has helped many on their career paths. He also has helped many save their businesses from going under. He has worked so hard to help others get on the right track. On another note...His personal life is none of our business. What he did or didn't do is for him and his family to sort out in private. Let he who has not sinned cast the first stone.
Jerkov Wain-Kerr on February 18, 2012:
Gordon is a f*cking MAN, who has achieved more than you, earns more than you, gets laid infinitely more than you, is infinitely more relevant than you, cooks way way way f-ing better than you, and uh...uh...yeah, well, there are no other more relevant metrics really. Your name is? Who? Sorry, never heard of you. Gordon Ramsay? Fuck, for sure, man, who hasn't heard of him!
Christina Louise on August 05, 2011:
I have always loved GR. He has fantastic entertainment value and despite his tough front, he sometimes shows that he has a big warm heart under that rough exterior.
Paul Goodman (author) from Florida USA on July 25, 2011:
Well, in some ways his positives and his flaws are two sides of the same coin: they brought him success, but might also be his undoing! :)
IdeaMorphist from Chicagoland on July 25, 2011:
I love Gordon!!! Even his flaws :)
Paul Goodman (author) from Florida USA on June 02, 2011:
I love Kitchen Nightmares, as I find it interesting to hear Chef Gordon Ramsay's ideas on the restaurant business. Some of the other stuff he does, I am not so keen on. I also wonder about his private life, which seems chaotic, to say the least. I wouldn't be completely shocked if he suffered a complete Tiger Woods style meltdown!
b. Malin on April 27, 2011:
I like his crazy personality...maybe it just seems to suit him...But sometimes he goes into such rages that I would worry that it could affect his (heart) and health. To sum him up, what you see, is what you get...He is not a phony and he's worked hard to get where he is today.