Gordon Ramsay is known for dishing out advice in a not all together calm manner on his various TV shows, but in a recent Quora Q&A to promote his new Masterclass series he shared some sage advice for budding restaurateurs and chefs, minus the shouting.
Fielding questions, Ramsay spoke of the pressure that drives him, explained the difference, in his eyes, between a good and a great chef – it’s all down to palate sensitivity, he says – and talked about his role models, including Marco Pierre White, Guy Savoy, and initially, his mother.
"My first inspiration was my mum in terms of her determination and handling two jobs. Watching her cook in the morning, then nurse in the evening and then come home Christmas day from an all-night shift and perfect a Christmas lunch on the back of no sleep ... my mum was a massive influence," he said.
He also had this advice for first time restaurateurs: "As opposed to worrying about being famous, worry about the restaurant being popular within your neighborhood. The NYTimes, Michelin, The New Yorker, they will come visit you if it's the best in the neighborhood, but don't worry about outside of that neighborhood. Become full on a Monday, Tuesday, and a Wednesday. If a restaurant in its first six months can be full on a Monday and Tuesday, then the rest of it takes care of itself."
This being Ramsay though, he couldn’t resist the odd bit of braggadocio. Asked what he’d be if he weren't a chef, he said: “I would probably be a Navy SEAL ... they are elite athletes and their discipline is something I can relate to.” As he was on the other side of a computer though, it’s hard to tell whether he was keeping a straight face.