TV chef Gordon Ramsay's opening night 'sabotaged'
TELEVISION personality and chef Gordon Ramsay has claimed that the opening night of his new restaurant, Heddon Street Kitchen, was sabotaged by a rival who made 100 fake online bookings.
Speaking on ITV's The Jonathan Ross Show, Ramsay was asked by the presenter, "Is there a rivalry within the industry you suspect that people want to undermine you?"
Ramsay replied, "I think there's all that level of envy. Saturday was our first big day opening (of Heddon Street Kitchen). We had 140 on the books and we had 100 no show. So someone's literally online..."
Ross asked whether it was deliberate and Ramsay replied, "Yep, sabotage. It's bad spirit and you see the staff and they are down and frustrated, I was there to pick them up and make sure we stay focused. Now we're going to reconfirm every table."
Ramsay did not say which restaurant rival he thought was to blame.
Commenting on the difficulties of setting up a new establishment, Ramsay added, "Settling any restaurant down takes a lot of work. Critics come in, bloggers come in, and they're influential people. It takes a good two, two-and-a-half months to settle down."
Ramsay's new restaurant is based in Regent Street's Food Quarter and the Gordon Ramsay Group now has 12 restaurants in London. The Group has 24 restaurants worldwide.
Earlier this year, Ramsay said that his reality show, Kitchen Nightmares - which made him a household name in both the UK and the US - was set to come to an end after the latest series.
The show first aired in 2004 and in a statement from June the celebrity chef wrote: "As filming comes to a close on the latest series of Kitchen Nightmares I've decided to stop making the show.
"I'm currently filming four new episodes, Costa Del Nightmares, for Channel 4 which will be my last. I've had a phenomenal 10 years making 123 episodes, 12 seasons, shot across two continents, watched by tens of millions of people and sold to over 150 countries. It's been a blast but it's time to call it a day."