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Gordon Ramsay stars in his own 'Kitchen Nightmare', sells West Hollywood restaurant

Ramsay_2 

Celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay has sold his Los Angeles restaurant -- Gordon Ramsay at the London West Hollywood -- to the hotel's operator, LXR Luxury Resorts, according to the Daily Mail.

The Michelin three-star chef's financial woes made headlines last week after his company, Gordon Ramsay Holdings, broke agreements with lenders to secure a loan. According to the Guardian, Ramsay and Chief Executive Chris Hutcheson (who is also his father-in-law) have said they would help the company pay debts if necessary. The article said that Ramsay's company lent several million dollars to his ventures in the U.S. (he has restaurants in New York and L.A.), even though they aren't a subsidiary of the company. The L.A. restaurant opened in June.

Ramsay stars in the television reality shows "Hell's Kitchen" and "Kitchen Nightmares." In "Kitchen Nightmares," he attempts to help near-bankrupt restaurants in a last-ditch effort to turn them around.

Representatives for Ramsay in London and LXR in Miami did not immediately return calls for comment. "Gordon Ramsay and his team will concentrate on menu development and service standards throughout all of the hotel's culinary outlets while the day-to-day food and beverage operation will be handled by the hotel," said Amy Campbell, a spokeswoman for the hotel in Los Angeles. "The restaurant will continue to operate under the same name -- Gordon Ramsay at the London West Hollywood."

"As far as the kitchen is concerned, everything is the same," said chef de cuisine Andy Cook, who previously has worked for Ramsay in London and Tokyo. "The food is the same, the standards are the same. It's the same name on the door and we're still pulling for three Michelin stars. You won’t see any difference."

-- Betty Hallock

Photo: Michael Robinson-Chavez

 
Comments () | Archives (19)

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Wow! I'm just learning of this tonight: I'm "gobsmacked!" I had no idea this had happened. Poor Gordon. Yeah, no really, I find this disheartening because no one wants to experience this. I'm an experienced, self taught, dare I say chef. I've worked in kitchens and for caterers for years; but MANY are far better than I. Each day I bring my lunch to work and every staff member asks, tastes, gets the recipe and then tells me I need to open a restaurant. But I've been behind the line (for 15 years) and its not pretty. There are so many factors that have to work in unison in order to really, truly succeed. Yet with all Ramsays' brilliance (he is!) it's sad to see this outcome. I've written a feature length script, and I had planned to take myself to dinner at The London when it sells, but now I'm not likely to. As for opening my own place three films hence; I guess I'd start small. Hugs Gordon! Adrian

Both the restaurant and the London Hotel are doing poor.
In this economy people are not going to spend $400 a night for a room and $50 a person on dinner. The London is not the only hotel in LA that is seeing the effects of the economy, The Hotel Bel Air, The Peninsula, The Beverly Hilton, and The Beverly Hills Hotel have all slashed the room rates, The Peninsula was selling rooms for $625 a night last year and this year rates have dropped to $450 a night.

With regards to the -awful Brit, who'd have the English cook for them - comment, Gordon is not English, he is in fact Scottish. These are two of the four nationalities in the UK. Look them up and then maybe you'll be able to give a decent, caring and informed opinion...like Gordon does.

awful brit --- and who would pay to have the English cook for them? they are known the world over for being chinless with awful boiled food -- stay on your tiny island and keep your ugly 'celebrities' like this one and the Beckhams.

Dear Mario manutti, you obviously don't know anything about Ramsay, 12-14 hours a day is nothing, try 16-18 hours a day. You're obviously a failed chef, who feel's that bragging like that is going to make you a bigger man. If you don't like ramsay's food don't go there, it's as simple as that. You cannot blame Ramsay for wanting to finally reap the rewards of basically living you're life in a KItchen.
The U.S versions of his program's are clearly designed for the u.s market which specialises in prouducing really bad television and movies to appease the retarded americans that most of the world dislikes. Step back and take a look at yourself mario.

This hotel, being a Blackstone asset, is in a bit of a dichotomy in that Blackstone strives for a 40% combined profit in their Food and Beverage operations. Assuming that the London West Hollywood is a boutique hotel, it is not hard to surmise that there is not enough alternative revenue (catering) generated outside of what the restaurant is responsible for to achieve that goal. Blackstone's strategy is to lease out restaurant operations in its hotels to operators like Mr. Ramsey because they are a burden to manage profitably. I have no doubt that the standards of this restaurant were well intended at the outset, and that through poor management those standards were not sustained. LA will support such ventures if they pass muster beyond the first reviews. This one did not. Therefore, I seriously doubt Chef Hutcheson's statement will hold in the long term.

My wife and I and some friends visited London back in September and the service was exemplary. It really was. The meal was well paced. The food was brilliant and nothing ever felt rushed. For the Ramsay haters that have only been exposed to his US versions shows I do suggest they should seek out the Brit versions. Or look for the Boiling Point. Released in 1998 before he became The Man, The Myth (and probably most importantly) The Three Starred Gordon Ramsay! The docu follows him trying to attain his third star. And has some great scenes with him interacting with one of his mentors, Marco Pierre White (who will host Yank version of The Chopping Block) who had, I believe, one of the only 3 Michelin star English restaurants at the time. Very good little flick which shows a much more human side of Gordo.

Never worked 12 to 14 hour behind a range? Sir obviously you worked in some nice places so you must know the business but tell me do you honestly believe the organization that controls the Michelin Guide just hand out 3 stars to just anyone? I always read the third star was hardest to attain and for any chef to carry multiple 3 stars restaurants under his belt has bled for his craft. He fought for each and every one of his accolades which includes everything from his Rosettes to his Stars. Yeah, he may not work behind the range like he did when he was coming up but he had to start somewhere. I just can't believe you don't see that sir.

I must agree with KFE, you need to watch his program “The “F” Word” on BBC American. The “F” word stands for food. You can see the passion he has to teach us how to make good food quickly. This program not only shows his passion for cooking, it also shows his interaction with his wife and children. You need to remember that he wears several hats, he is a chef, a patron chef, a businessman, a teacher, an entertainer and a family man.

I’ve never eaten in the Hollywood restaurant however this January I had the pleasure of eating lunch at “The Maze” Restaurant in Manhattan. Service was great, I felt welcome, that they wanted my business and they cared. The food was great, I even got a tour of the kitchen which was spotless and met Stewart one of the chef’s. He even knew what I had ordered.

We all have free choice, if you don’t like him, his food or his restaurants, you have the choice not to eat at his restaurants and not to read or write about him.

That’s my opinion.

When you are doing as many projects as Ramsey is doing, quality is going to suffer

as a retired chef trained in europe this guy it wont last half hour with the chefs that i worked in switzerland france or italy even on the sixties in new york or in la for instance royal grand danielli hotel o o cafe de paris or perinos this guy never worked 12 to 14 hours behind the range and under a lot of pressure not a staged situations is all bs

Having been there twice I can say that the food (and the service) is truly hit or miss. This is certainly not at the level of Gary Danko's, Bazaar, Cyrus, Bastide, French Laundry, or others that are truly on top of their game.
And Dew - you think the food is too highbrow for LA? Have you actually been? I doubt it...

Opening a high end restaurant in this economy (even if it was back in June) is suicide, even for a celeb like Ramsay. And I've heard nothing but bad things about this place, which leads me to believe Gordo is stretching himself a bit thin with all his enterprises, to focus on one good thing. Maybe he should take his own "Kitchen Nightmare" advice to other restaurant owners.

The reason it's probably doing poorly is because the service is laughable and the food is average at well above average prices. I am honest when I say that it was possibly the worst service I've ever had. We were thinking the waiter was going to hand us a release form at the end of our meal asking permission to be on Gordon's psycho show, but alas....it was the bill. It may have been this server's first night, but he sure didn't have anyone trailing him. 3 stars my fanny!! Place should be shuttered and turned into a pub!

Ignore the FOX-ification they give his shows in the states, and watch the BBC versions.

There is no doubt Gordon is passionate about what he does and won't rubber stamp something for a buck. Which may be his undoing in this economy...

Which begs the question, will he sell out like Puck ?

I wouldn't spend a cent in any restaurant that Ramsay owned or used to own. After watching that horrid show he is on, I have concluded that he belongs in a cage and his food should be used to feed farm animals.

The reason why this restaurant is doing poorly is the food - it's too high brow for L.A. folks where even the rich enjoy their burgers, pizza and french fries.

possible yes, likely? no. the restaurant might be great, but to be a three-star, a restaurant has to have the financial capability to take risks and hire the best people in the industry.

that won't happen once the hotel ownership takes over. They'll want to save pennies instead of invest in what it takes to get three stars.

Three stars are totally possible. Ramsay doesn't make the restaurant. Andy Cook is the Chef, trained in part by Ramsay (who was trained by Marco Pierre White) Sad to hear about the trouble for Gordo, but glad that Andy remains, and glad to see they aren't compromising. This was one of the best dining experiences I've had in LA and I wish them all the best.

three michelin stars without ramsay? good luck...


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