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Gordon Ramsay At The London

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Gordon the Great

Two ‘GQ’ writers examine Gordon Ramsay as a lovable celeb and a not-so-lovable chef.

By Daniel Maurer

One Star Seals the Deal for Irving Mill; Ilili Surprises in a Good Way

The story on Irving Mill was written before Frank Bruni delivered the coup de grâce — an ambivalent one-star review that pointed out the restaurant's odd inconsistencies. At this point, a one star was probably a best-case scenario for the place. [NYT] Speaking of best-case scenarios, we bet that Gordon Ramsay had higher hopes for Bruni's rereview of his big restaurant than the one that runs in Dining Briefs. Bruni finds Gordon Ramsay at the London still excellent but boring, and Peter Meehan isn't too crazy about Bun. [NYT] We heard that Ilili was a disaster, with bad service and worse food. So did Paul Adams, who was surprised to find that the word on the street was dead wrong. Adams even calls the food was “far, far better than it needs to be.” [NYS]

Gordon Ramsay Even a Jerk on Other People's TV Shows

Ramsay
A very contrite Gordon Ramsay was on display in Scotland’s Sunday Herald about a week ago — “We got screwed,” he says of Gordon Ramsay at the London’s opening, begging for sympathy because the ceiling caved in. No matter, Gordo is on to other things, like a restaurant in L.A. that will open in May and might — according to a rave review of Ramsay’s New York eatery in the Sunday Times of London — be backed by the Beckhams! The Times also mentions that Gordo might appear on The Simpsons, but will his cameo match his walk-on in the Extras Christmas special, in which a washed-up Andy Millman begs Gordo to get him into London’s Ivy restaurant? Click on the image above to watch.
To Hell’s Kitchen and Back Again [Sunday Herald of Scotland]
Gordon Ramsay in New York [Sunday Times of London]

Chang Has Big Dreams for Vegas; Nobu to Cater

David Chang plans to open a Momofuku in Vegas where everyone “wants you to do well. [And] there are no government officials who go after you and none of the bull[bleep] that’s in New York City.” [NYP] Nobu heads to the Sundance Film Festival this January as the first push to establish a catering arm of the company. [NYP] Gordon Ramsay at the London, Insieme, and Toloache are some of the newer restaurants spicing up pre-theater dining. [NYT]

Could Gordon Ramsay's Act Get Any More Tired? Apparently So.

Leno
It’s not any breaking news that Gordon Ramsay’s act has been wearing pretty thin. But Thursday's appearance on the Tonight Show was so bad, and Gordo’s patter so labored, that he may have actually gone back in time and become twenty years over the hill, rather than just a month or two. Ramsey’s stilted, scripted spiel made a point of calling out such of-the-moment targets as snooty French people, cops, and even women drivers. (We kept waiting for him to start in on hippies, but maybe he’s saving that for Dick Cavett.)

A Happy New York Ending for Gordo; Bruni Thinks Michelin Ratings ‘Just Nutty’

Gordon Ramsay at the London is the only new restaurant in town to earn two stars in the Michelin Guide, a conquest that’s especially sweet here where the chef is often maligned and/or mocked — by us, for example. [NYP] Related: Gordon Ramsay, Gay Icon Two of Jean-Georges Vongerichten's “lesser lights,” Vong and JoJo, have received the same Michelin rating as Café Boulud, and according to Bruni, “that’s just nutty.” [Diner’s Journal/NYT] Jean-Georges has promoted a 24-year-old star sous-chef to be chef de cuisine at Perry St. [Eater]

Gordon Ramsay’s Exhausts, Neighbors Still Fuming

Given how much grief Gordon Ramsay has had lately (a seared testicle, lawsuit, etc.), we thought we’d add to it by inquiring after the status of his battle with his New York neighbors. Last year, they were up in arms about the noise and stench Gordon Ramsay at the London brought to them, and this year, they are too. “Imagine your house being inundated with dirty bacon and duck smells,” says resident Karen Sharf. “We cannot sleep and cannot basically breathe in our apartments.”

Ex-Ramsay Chef Taking Over Allen and Delancey; High-End Chinese Fading Fast

Neil Ferguson, the former chef at Gordon Ramsay, will be in charge of the kitchen at Allen and Delancey when the place finally opens in September. [NYT] Related: Allen and Delancey Tripped at the Finish Line, Won't Open The city’s Chinese fine-dining restaurants are on the run, the victims of changing tastes, high costs, and slim margins. The East Side’s Sichuan Pavilion just went under, and even the genre’s grande dame, Shun Lee Palace, is now peopled mostly by seniors. [NYS] Organic chef Matthew Kenney, best known for his acrimonious exit from Pure Food and Wine, is back in town and preparing to open a retail prepared-organic-foods business. [NYS] Related: Raw Foodist Sarma Melngailis Drinks Grapefruit Sake Mojitos Before Noon

Alain Ducasse Hates Molecular Gastronomy; BLT Market Pushed Back to August

Alain Ducasse speaks out on his restaurants, his rivalry with Joël Robuchon, and the challenge of running a global empire. But his most pointed remarks are about molecular gastronomy: “I prefer to be able to identify what I’m eating.” [Bloomberg] BLT Market, Laurent Tourondel’s entry into the Haute Barnyard sweepstakes, has been pushed back to August. [RG] “Hipster chef” Sam Mason’s new Internet TV show gets love in the Daily News, which swooningly describes him as “witty, goateed and extremely good-looking.” But you already knew that. [NYDN] Related: The Launch

Sam Mason Gets His Own Special Island

Welcome to the latest installment of the Launch, where Sam Mason, former pastry chef at wd-50, relates the ups and downs of preparing to open Tailor, the swanky restaurant and lounge coming together at 525 Broome Street.

Gordon Ramsay’s Dark Side Revealed; Staten Island Pizza Conquers the World in Vegas

According to a revealing new profile by Heat author Bill Buford, Gordon Ramsay isn’t a bad guy, “but he does get angry, helplessly and uncontrollably angry — not an earthly anger but something darker — and has trouble knowing how to stop.” [NYer] State legislator proposes an A through F system of grading restaurant hygiene, but the Department of Health is against it. [amNY] A Staten Island pizzeria beats out a field of 65 from six countries to win the 23rd International Pizza Expo in Las Vegas. It’s Denino’s, right? Joe and Pat’s? No. It’s Goodfella’s Brick Oven Pizza. [NYDN]

The Great Chef Crisis

Recently, apropos nothing much, a prominent young chef we were chatting with launched into a tirade about the restaurant world’s “labor problem.” “None of us can get enough good cooks!” he exclaimed, by way of explanation. Between 2000 and 2006, only a handful of high-end restaurants — Lespinasse, Meigas, Quilty’s — have closed, and there has been an avalanche of major openings: Robuchon, Ramsay, Per Se, Masa, Craft, Del Posto, Morimoto, A Voce, the Modern, Lever House, Buddakan, Cafe Gray, Alto — the list goes on and on. “And it’s not just the massive boom of restaurants,” Adam Platt tells us. “They also have to be either bigger, or chefs have to open multiple places, so that they can enjoy the economies of scale they need to compete.”

Gordon Ramsay Chef Has Tomorrow (and the Next Day, and Day After That...) Off

Gordon Ramsay at the London chef de cuisine Neil Ferguson — basically, the guy running the kitchen — has apparently been canned. According to our source, as well as Eater, the staff was informed last night. Ramsay Dismisses Neil Ferguson [Eater] Update: Representatives confirm the move, saying that Ramsay veteran Josh Emett has taken over, with Ferguson returning to London to “focus on upcoming projects for Gordon Ramsay Holdings.”

Ssäm Bar Vindicated; Haute Cuisine Gets No Love

Momofuku Ssäm Bar wins two stars (!) from Bruni and completes a success story that seemed pretty unlikely a few months ago, when the place was selling Asian burritos to a handful of customers. The review is also a watershed in the changing culture of restaurants: Formal is now officially out, casual now officially legit. [NYT] Related: The I Chang [NYM] Meanwhile, Randall Lane is a lone dissenter, calling out Ssäm Bar for its unevenness, lack of focus, and the steep prices of some of its main dishes. On the whole, though, he seems to have missed the point — David Chang's loose, unfettered approach to good cooking. [TONY] Steve Cuozzo joins in the chorus of approval greeting Wayne Nish’s transformation of the stuffy March into the swinging, fusion-y Nish. The message: Remain formal at your own peril. (See reviews of Dennis Foy and Gordon Ramsay.) [NYP] Related: Bedeviled [NYM]

It's Final: Ramsay's Dull; March Gets Romantic

Bruni goes to Gordon Ramsay and finds common ground with everyone else, saying it’s well executed, flawless even — and totally uninspiring. Even the paint is dull! (Two stars.) [NYT] In keeping with his recent interest in the international, Meehan visits a Romanian restaurant with garlicky spreads in Sunnyside. Still, despite the Sphinx, the place still doesn’t sound all that interesting. [NYT] March reborn as Nish: It's more romantic, thanks to more intimate seating, exotic ingredients, and dishes that “broadly evoked the cuisine of chef Gray Kunz: international spices used with local ingredients and French technique.” Who isn’t doing that these days? [Bloomberg]