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Ramsay Preps Food Off-Site


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I would imagine though a lot of it comes down to consistency - to ensure that the pies etc taste exactly the same across the group, carluccios/giraffe etc all those sorts of places all do do this sort of thing and we are talking about pubs not michelin starred restaurants here - i think this is turning into a witch hunt against Ramsay and find it all quite unnecessary, cynical and somewhat sinister to be honest, time to leave him alone and move on

again, where does this come from????

they are individual establishments, not like giraffe or carluccio's.

NO ONE goes into the narrow or the devonshire expecting them to taste the same, they have expectation of quality - but not the same menu, created identically.

I know what to expect at carluccio's, because they don't pretend to be something their not.

A meal without wine is... well, erm, what is that like?

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But how can a chef as lauded as Ramsay chase the cheap dollar? How can he justify churning out pre-made food given the money and profile he derives from spouting - very, very loudly - the exact opposite?

He is more involved with places that carry his name than MPW is, yet no one goes after him in the same way.

1. they certainly did in the day.

2. MPW is irrelevant these days, has nothing to do with him.

plain fact is Ramsay is promoting his brand and his idealogy every week on TV, in his newspaper columns etc. he is trying to monetise them at these pubs, and Foxtrot Oscar. in order for people to buy into the ideology, you must first offer it and sell it.

if you can show me a single example of him, on TV, suggesting people outsource food prep then I'll accept he is not guilty of hypocrisy. but he doesn't, he promotes his values all the time, and it appears he doesn't stand by his own words.

A meal without wine is... well, erm, what is that like?

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if you can show me a single example of him, on TV, suggesting people outsource food prep then I'll accept he is not guilty of hypocrisy.  but he doesn't, he promotes his values all the time, and it appears he doesn't stand by his own words.

He's not outsourcing it though, is he? He's having it centrally prepared under his company's control at GR Logistics. The allegation isn't that he's bringing it in from a separate supplier like Brake's, but that he's benefitting from economies of scale and scope. Which seems simple economics.

Given that one of his cardinal rules is consistency of output, this strictly follows that line. Its not hypocritical, it's absolutely to the letter what he preaches. And it doesn't stop the food being regional or seasonal. If he was centrally producing food that was flown around the world or sent to other parts of the country, the complaint might be valid, but he's not.

Seems like GR can't win here. If he develops a chain of gastropubs, a good percentage of people will go to them knowing who owns them and expecting a certain quality and consistency of food. If the pubs are inconsistent, or lacking in quality, he'll get kicked.

This story relies so much on the shock horror of most punters

a) not understanding 70% GP as standard ('they're selling a £4 bottle of wine for £13, how dare they?')

b) believing that all the food they get at pubs and restaurants is ALWAYS freshly prepared from scratch, which we all know (with a couple of exceptions in very small places) is patent nonsense.

I'm with Tim on this one. THis story came out mid-week, so its possibly a spoiler for a story a competitor has got. Its fairly small beer, but it's part of a longer campaign. Look to the Sundays over the next week or so for the real story.

Edited by BertieWooster (log)

It no longer exists, but it was lovely.

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Demi glace is the perfect example for how this sytem makes sense!

If the central kitchen didn't exsist it would still be made to the same recipie in each individual outlet.

Why because the recipie is tried and tested!

Demi glace takes a lot of space and time to make, it requires large boilers and a lot of oven space. So why have 5 chefs in 5 kitchens making the same item, move the boilers and ovens to one location, create space in the kitchens, lose 4 chefs and give the chefs in the outlet time to concentrate on other aspects of the MEP.

Makes perfect sense to me, in fact it's a bloody good idea.

Anyway he's been buying his bread and chocolates in from a third party supplier for years and that hasn't stopped him from getting 3 stars....

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I was called yesterday morning by the Sun for comment on all this, presumably because the Walnut Tree in an earlier lifetime took a bashing from Gordon Ramsay and that I could be relied on to take a swipe back.

My view was that cooking stocks, sauces, stews and most pastry somewhere off site made lots of sense financially, that the margins he achieves are his business - if the price for a meal is too high the place will fail - and that eating at one of his spots is optional not compulsory like the rates. I did say that the Kitchen Nightmares programme in my opinion was becoming formulaic and could do with quiet euthanasia.

So I was mildy irritated to see quotes from me that I didn't say and that do not reflect my point of view in today's paper. I think that the piece was written and the attitude already decided long before I or anyone else was called. The journalist did tell me that I was being too generous about things. Not me, I would have said different if I had thought different

However, they did ask my age and get that right. Not sure whether that's a result.

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Ah Shaun, a common sense point of view from a common sense chef. Now that's exactly why you have so many fans here on eGullet. I was actually reading your quote in the Sun* only a couple of hours ago and did note it seemed like it'd been "journo-ed", it didn't quite have your normal turn of phrase.

Anyway, back to the central story, I must say nothing I've read or heard here or elsewhere has swayed my opinion that this is a story for the story's sake - Ramsay has centralised elements of his own cooking for his "roll-outable" gastropub concept. He's not "buying stuff in". Big deal? No.

Funnily enough he is selling meals for a tenner or so that cost a couple of quid in raw food costs. Woop-de-do, welcome to the industry standard of gross profit. The average restaurant that works to this model is struggling to stay alive, not fleecing it's customers.

IThe story plays well to Joe Public though as they regularly buy food products so they can get their head around a perceived rip-off (a little knowledge is a dangerous thing...). Maybe if anyone regularly bought raw yarn or blocks of metal they would be crying out about why their Paul Smith suit costs £700 when it only has £50 of wool in or their £40k Beamer has only £2k of steel...

Yeah, I made those figures up but you get the point...

The only real issue here is that Ramsay's behavious seems superficially/slightly contradictory to what he preaches on his programmes though as discussed centralised cooking ahead is sensible best practice (either off-site or on) and can still use fresh, seasonal ingredients and can be limited to pastry, stocks, stews etc - It;s not like he's cooking fish courses ahead of time!

Frankly this is simply is a cheap shot at a name guaranteed to sell papers. That's the price Ramsay has played for building a career beyond cooking out of playing the media/marketing game. maybe his millions will soften the blow (though based on his last accounts...).

As someone here noted if the majority of people care about the perceived hypocrisy than he'll pay for it in plummeting sales, and if they don't then who cares? Let the people decide and vote with their feet (or their out-raged pallets).

I think the most interesting angle is that various people with a very good knowledge of the way journalism works have all said (both on here and off) that they believe this is a typical newspapers tactic of using a drip-drip-drip of non-stories to tee him up for a major expose, or they are spoiling something a competitor paper is cooking up.

We shall see in the next few weeks I'm sure. From the rumours I've heard "off the record" about Ramsay then pre-made stocks and pastry may be the least of his concerns.

Cheers

Thom

*Yes, I read the Sun and the Guardian on a Saturday, and the Times and NotW on a Sunday - it's all about enjoying the high culture AND the low culture, variety is the spice of life. I like the heady contrast between reading Heat and Private Eye too.

It's all true... I admit to being the MD of Holden Media, organisers of the Northern Restaurant and Bar exhibition, the Northern Hospitality Awards and other Northern based events too numerous to mention.

I don't post here as frequently as I once did, but to hear me regularly rambling on about bollocks - much of it food and restaurant-related - in a bite-size fashion then add me on twitter as "thomhetheringto".

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There seems to be a drip drip drip of people saying that Ramsay is facing a major "story" soon for ages now, but it fails to appear in print.Explain to a simple chef why, if they have the story, they sit on it?

Depends on a myriad of different things really. If a newspaper truly believes a rival is about to pinch their exclusive then as long as they have a half-decent story they'll run it and be damned. Otherwise though, if they have signed up sources, witnesses etc and have acquired evidence that no one else has access to they might feel secure enough to sit on it until they think, through timing or additional work, it will have the maximum impact.

Often their are just lining up their ducks and getting everything just so and filling in gaps and belts and bracing things, though just as often there can be deep and involved negotiations behind the scenes between the paper, the subject of the story and their representatives.

This can involve defensive legal stuff by the individual concerned - rushed injunctions etc preventing details or naming of names (you often see this in a paper when they run something anyway saying "A top footballer's lawyers have prevented us running a story alleging he has a penchant of peacocks!" etc). The papers often try and flag this up as a "how dare the powers that be inhibit us, your friendly paper, from telling you people the truth!". Considering the often tawdry nature of such stories it's hard to have too much sympathy.

It can also involve the newspaper bartering and haggling with the person involved, whereby if they officially buy into the "exclusive" they get a chance to modify what is revealed or affect whether the tone of the resulting piece is sympathetic or not. The classic is the kiss and tell where the person in question could be portrayed as a damp squib in the sack or a bedroom stallion, depending on whether they play along. A story could change from "Hypocritical married politician caught doing the dirty!" to "Married Politician - How moment of weakness destroyed my loveless marriage" depending on him playing ball. Funnily enough if said politician signs up with paper A meaning the exclusive takes the less damaging line you'll find rival paper B will try and do a spoiler along the lines of the first story.

Another situation is where the subject of the paper's expose will offfer another story on the promise that they bury the original story. It has to be something juicy enough to buy the paper's silence but less damahing to the subject than the original option. It's amazing how often acceptable exposes can be found. It can be a dangerous game though, as the paper has you by the nuts and might expect stories and favours in the future. Also with a change of editor and policy you never know when they might decide to dust down some red hot scandal from their vaults.

Conversely this can all happen the other way where friendly journalists or editors make sure scandal or negative stories about friends or favourites get watered down or buried completely. Both are just as wrong and misleading to the public, who are normally completely unaware of all these machinations.

And the third reason for stories getting "sat on" is where the press as a whole decides it is wrong or not in the national interest to publish a story (I'm scratching around for examples as to what might be considered off-limits in this day and age - stuff with the military and national security is one area I suppose) and whilst this seems to happen less nowadays (as there are so many media outlets and such competition) it still is a consideration.

I stress this isn't the case with all journalists, all papers and all stories but all of these scenarios certainly happen, particularly amongst the tabloids, on a regular basis. It's a sad but true fact that the press no more bring us the truest news, as it happens, with no spin or agenda, than it is that politics is just a load of people with no thoughts for themselves and an unrelenting hunger to make the world a better and fairer place for other people.

Street of Shame in Private Eye often uncovers these stories on a regular basis, and reading something like Piers Morgan's biog (if you can bare to) also sheds light on the scale of this practice. My dad was a Chief Sub on most of the nationals at one point or another through the seventies and eighties and the stories he used to come back with which were widely acknowledged as true by all and sundry in the industry but never actually got printed was staggering.

Phew... Long rambly post, but the sun is shining outside so I think it'll just leave it that way instead of wasting half an hour editing it down and tidying it up. My dad would be disgusted...

Cheers

Thom

It's all true... I admit to being the MD of Holden Media, organisers of the Northern Restaurant and Bar exhibition, the Northern Hospitality Awards and other Northern based events too numerous to mention.

I don't post here as frequently as I once did, but to hear me regularly rambling on about bollocks - much of it food and restaurant-related - in a bite-size fashion then add me on twitter as "thomhetheringto".

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My view was that cooking stocks, sauces, stews and most pastry somewhere off site made lots of sense financially, that the margins he achieves are his business - if the price for a meal is too high the place will fail - and that eating at one of his spots is optional not compulsory like the rates.

Absolutely spot on. This is classic food to a predictable standard, not flights of gastronomic fancy. Pragmatism rules -- we're talking nourishment and simple pleasure, not transubstantiation.

John Whiting, London

Whitings Writings

Top Google/MSN hit for Paris Bistros

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Here's a question - how much of the fat ducks dishes would be cooked from start to finish in their kitchen on site? I would have thought they do most of the prep in their r & d kitchen(/lab!) in another building and just finish the dishes off during service? Anyway, my point is - add a bit of media spin and you can probably turn that into a story...

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Here's a question - how much of the fat ducks dishes would be cooked from start to finish in their kitchen on site?  I would have thought they do most of the prep in their r & d kitchen(/lab!) in another building and just finish the dishes off during service?  Anyway, my point is - add a bit of media spin and you can probably turn that into a story...

...and what about that Finn chap in Leeds, or Ducasse in Paris. Do all their restaurants work completely independently or do they consolidate production of certain dishes in a primary kitchens..?

The public needs to know. Let the fearless reporters from the Sun expose this scandal, despatch them immediately for an in-depth investigation (all on expenses of course). Remember to eat both lunch and dinner at each restaurant to really check the quality, ideally more than once.

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if you can show me a single example of him, on TV, suggesting people outsource food prep then I'll accept he is not guilty of hypocrisy.  but he doesn't, he promotes his values all the time, and it appears he doesn't stand by his own words.

He's not outsourcing it though, is he? He's having it centrally prepared under his company's control at GR Logistics. The allegation isn't that he's bringing it in from a separate supplier like Brake's, but that he's benefitting from economies of scale and scope. Which seems simple economics.

Given that one of his cardinal rules is consistency of output, this strictly follows that line. Its not hypocritical, it's absolutely to the letter what he preaches. And it doesn't stop the food being regional or seasonal. If he was centrally producing food that was flown around the world or sent to other parts of the country, the complaint might be valid, but he's not.

Seems like GR can't win here. If he develops a chain of gastropubs, a good percentage of people will go to them knowing who owns them and expecting a certain quality and consistency of food. If the pubs are inconsistent, or lacking in quality, he'll get kicked.

This story relies so much on the shock horror of most punters

a) not understanding 70% GP as standard ('they're selling a £4 bottle of wine for £13, how dare they?')

b) believing that all the food they get at pubs and restaurants is ALWAYS freshly prepared from scratch, which we all know (with a couple of exceptions in very small places) is patent nonsense.

I'm with Tim on this one. THis story came out mid-week, so its possibly a spoiler for a story a competitor has got. Its fairly small beer, but it's part of a longer campaign. Look to the Sundays over the next week or so for the real story.

i'm sorry but that's just semantics. yeah, I used 'outsource' slightly loosely, but the principle is still the same. these places buy in their food, or at least a solid proportion of it.

and yes I get the idea that there is some sort of impression that anyone who is surprised by this "just doesn't understand the industry" which is nonsense. it is not what he does (or does not do), it is what his customers believe he does. if there is a mismatch there is a problem.

these pubs are sold as stand alone operations where Gordon has waived his magic wand over them, instilling his basic value for what makes a restaurant work. he promotes these values all across the media, and his customers to these places no doubt expect that whatever simple food they are served is the result of his principles.

FFS fish cakes? any moron can make fish cakes fresh, they do not need to be bought in. and again, this central facility apparently supplies many other non GR establishments too. so it can, and should, be seen as a standalone operation. I don't care which other operations buy in their fish cake or coq au vin or whatever - they are not promoting a different, quite explicit value system to all and sundry.

I mean how many people know Manoir aux Quats saison outsources staff feeding to compass? makes financial sense, but still doesn't sit terribly well when you think about it.

again, to reiterate its not what you do, its what you say you do. and I don't believe anyone who goes into the Narrow or Foxtrot Oscar believes their food is bought in from outside.

Edited by Scott (log)

A meal without wine is... well, erm, what is that like?

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Anyway, back to the central story, I must say nothing I've read or heard here or elsewhere has swayed my opinion that this is a story for the story's sake - Ramsay has centralised elements of his own cooking for his "roll-outable" gastropub concept. He's not "buying stuff in". Big deal? No.

but he IS buying stuff in. this facility supplies his places and others not owned by him.

after all what is the difference between this facility and brakes, if it is available to all to purchase from? seriously, it is the same thing. it just becomes 'Ramsay at Brakes' :laugh:

what's more, it is 'alleged' these are complete dishes.

As someone here noted if the majority of people care about the perceived hypocrisy than he'll pay for it in plummeting sales, and if they don't then who cares? Let the people decide and vote with their feet (or their out-raged pallets).

this is however true. and I guess we'll all see in the end.

A meal without wine is... well, erm, what is that like?

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A useful contribution coems from Jay Rayner in today's Observer.

If I paraphrase Jay correctly, he suggests that there is nothing inherently "bang out of order" here in a business sense. But that one should expect more from the Ramsey Empire, simply because it's the Ramsey Empire.

I think I agree with that. I've only eaten at one Ramsey place - Devonshire - based on a recc PhilD gave me on another board. I enjoyed my meal - nothing "boil in the bag" and a good example of gastropub expectations being met.

John

John Hartley

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i'm sorry but that's just semantics.  yeah, I used 'outsource' slightly loosely, but the principle is still the same.  these places buy in their food, or at least a solid proportion of it. 

Hang on. If you outsource anything you no longer have direct control of it, you contract it out and someone else controls quality etc. You pay the bills and the supplier performs to the contract/SLA's etc. In this case Ramsay owns and "controls" GR Logistics. It isn't outsourced it is very much part of the overall company GR Holdings - as are the pubs restaurants etc. OK they sell to other companies - good for them - it doesn't mean Ramsay doesn't have any less control.

The difference between this and Brakes? Easy the users don't own the facility/business. Brakes will make a margin on their food, the restaurant will then need to make their 70% GP on this. Profit on profit. I assume GR Logistics isn't a stand-alone business therefore supplies the restaurants in the Group at cost. A very different proposition to Brakes.

They also have a centralised HR department that provides services to the 900 staff in London. Does this destroy the character of the individual restaurants. Do the restaurants suffer because a central team handles recruiting?

Edited by PhilD (log)
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FFS fish cakes?  any moron can make fish cakes fresh, they do not need to be bought in.  and again, this central facility apparently supplies many other non GR establishments too.  so it can, and should, be seen as a standalone operation.  I don't care which other operations buy in their fish cake or coq au vin or whatever - they are not promoting a different, quite explicit value system to all and sundry.

again, to reiterate its not what you do, its what you say you do.  and I don't believe anyone who goes into the Narrow or Foxtrot Oscar believes their food is bought in from outside.

Or, FFS fish cakes, they're so easy to make, why not centralise the process so that quality and margins can be standardised and guaranteed across a number of venues? Why waste venue chef's time making everything, risking differing standards and potentially changing GP?

You're completely mis-representing what has happened, and making unjustifiable claims for what Ramsay has been saying. He has always talked extenisvely about managing margins AND consistency, both of which he's doing in this case. IT simply isn't the same as buying in from an external supplier. I see no difference to what a company like us do--we have two kitchens, one on the ground floor, one on the fifth floor. Because the ground floor kitchen is bigger and less busy outside of core hours, we use that for pre-prep and some storage. Stuff is then transported all the way upstairs as and when needed. If that ground floor kitchen was a) off-site and b) in accountancy terms a separate trading arm, we've just replicated GR's business model. Bet it's also, as others have said, what the FD do.

It no longer exists, but it was lovely.

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i'm sorry but that's just semantics.  yeah, I used 'outsource' slightly loosely, but the principle is still the same.  these places buy in their food, or at least a solid proportion of it. 

Hang on. If you outsource anything you no longer have direct control of it, you contract it out and someone else controls quality etc.

You pay the bills and the supplier performs to the contract/SLA's etc. In this case Ramsay owns and "controls" GR Logistics. It isn't outsourced it is very much part of the overall company GR Holdings - as are the pubs restaurants etc. OK they sell to other companies - good for them - it doesn't mean Ramsay doesn't have any less control.

i'm sorry, but if they sell to others then they are a standalone, business. they are exactly the same as brakes. brakes premium is what they call it.

you're also making assumptions about ownership and profit motivation.

as for Ramsay's control, why don't these other companies advertise as GR approved? perhaps because that is not what they are buying. if it had the GR stamp of approval, that would be a selling point would it not?

The difference between this and Brakes? Easy the users don't own the facility/business. 

they don't always own it at GR logistics either, now do they?

Brakes will make a margin on their food, the restaurant will then need to make their 70% GP on this. Profit on profit. I assume GR Logistics isn't a stand-alone business therefore supplies the restaurants in the Group at cost. A very different proposition to Brakes.

ok, we're getting somewhere now. look at the assumptions you've had to make, for this to make any sense.

brakes makes a profit, with a profit motivation. GR logistics, by virtue of their admitted external trade, also has a profit motivation. brakes premium sells complete dishes, so does gr logistics. what's more these external customers don't advertise it as GR sourced food - otherwise we'd know who they were, so that is purely anonymous, non-GR approved food supply. just like brakes.

maybe a better question, is why this seems so uncomfortable.

They also have a centralised HR department that provides services to the 900 staff in London. Does this destroy the character of the individual restaurants. Do the restaurants suffer because a central team handles recruiting?

ok, sure thing. :biggrin:

A meal without wine is... well, erm, what is that like?

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FFS fish cakes?  any moron can make fish cakes fresh, they do not need to be bought in.  and again, this central facility apparently supplies many other non GR establishments too.  so it can, and should, be seen as a standalone operation.  I don't care which other operations buy in their fish cake or coq au vin or whatever - they are not promoting a different, quite explicit value system to all and sundry.

again, to reiterate its not what you do, its what you say you do.  and I don't believe anyone who goes into the Narrow or Foxtrot Oscar believes their food is bought in from outside.

Or, FFS fish cakes, they're so easy to make, why not centralise the process so that quality and margins can be standardised and guaranteed across a number of venues? Why waste venue chef's time making everything, risking differing standards and potentially changing GP?

You're completely mis-representing what has happened, and making unjustifiable claims for what Ramsay has been saying. He has always talked extenisvely about managing margins AND consistency, both of which he's doing in this case. IT simply isn't the same as buying in from an external supplier. I see no difference to what a company like us do--we have two kitchens, one on the ground floor, one on the fifth floor. Because the ground floor kitchen is bigger and less busy outside of core hours, we use that for pre-prep and some storage. Stuff is then transported all the way upstairs as and when needed.

all very well to accuse someone of misrepresenting things, but feel free to point out what I have misrepresented?

If that ground floor kitchen was a) off-site and b) in accountancy terms a separate trading arm, we've just replicated GR's business model. 

yes, you have also replicated brake bros premium range business model.

Bet it's also, as others have said, what the FD do.

buying demi glace is not the same as buying completed dishes, from an operation that serves you and OTHERS. nothing like the FD. nothing at all. not nearly, even close.

the misrepresentation here is deciding to call it pre-prep. fish cakes and coq au vin is not pre-prep.

more to the point if this was soooo upfront, why did they release a clarify the situation so quickly? GR holdings makes a point of not responding to every rumour or scuttlebutt out there, but this time they jumped straight away. which suggests strongly, they felt this information wasn't widely known, and they wanted their position to be made known.

but again for clarity, and to avoid disingenuous suggestions of misrepresentation:

2 businesses buy completed dishes from company X. one advertises as from chef Z, the other does not. we do know this. it comes from their press release.

now why would the second company buy this product, arguably at a higher price than the first company, if they did not, could not, chose not to use Chef Z's endorsement? unless you are very commercially naive, its primarily for 2 reasons:

1. you are not paying a higher price

2. chef Z's endorsement is not why you are buying it.

so all we have a market place transaction. one where the shareholding chef's credentials are irrelevant, but one of the 2 purchasing companies is claiming otherwise.

ps. that might be me done on this. :smile:

A meal without wine is... well, erm, what is that like?

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they don't always own it at GR logistics either, now do they? 

Scott - isn't this the fundamental flaw in your argument? GRH is the business, operating units within that business include the pubs and GR Logistics. Thus control/ownership remains in the business of GRH. Brake Bros on the other hand has a commercial relathionship with its customers, and the customers only "control" is the decision to purchase, there is no owbership unless they buy shares.

Another flaw in your argument is to ignore the impact of scale. Brakes is enormous (nearly £2 billion turnover) with extended lines of control, a large number of product lines and a myriad of customers. GRH is relatively small (TO £41 million) and GRL has a limited number of customers.

Ownership and relatively small scale must enable GRH to tightly control quality and ensure the product cooked in their kitchens (at GRL) and served in their pubs meets their brand standard?

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The crux of this issue is public perception.Ramsay has made a an impression on the pubic as the guy who swears, is a 3 star chef, and can rescue failing restaurants.The public want to believe,however far fetched, that his prinicples will be the same across the board.It makes perfect sense to centrally produce part of the menu for multi sites, but because it's Gordon, it jars with people.In my nieave way, i believe that restaurants should be proud of all the do, so if your centrally producing some of your menu, then the public should know.But i guess ramsay plc isn't that mad keen on the idea, not beacuse it's wrong, just that it doesn't sit well with the public.If they had/have a central bakery producing bread for all the sites, people wouldn't bat an eye lid.

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in my mind it plays like this:

-GR makes a few million quid from making TV programs, where he bullies pub/restaurant owners for being lazy/incompetent/not caring enough/, because their food is bought, is not fresh, etc etc...

-He repeatedly goes on TV saying how freshness, putting in the effort, showing love and care for the food products, makes a difference, and customers appreciate it.

- He bashes MPW and Delia for their decisions to start incorporating "ready-made" products in their cooking

-he opens a bunch of gastropubs

- he provides the gastropubs with ready-made products

- he replies that it is all OK to use Ramsay ready-made products, because well.. it is "RAMSAY READY-MADE products".

If he had not being so dogmatic on his "preachings" about the "freshness, love, care, good honest cooking" all along his TV and public carreer, I would not have a problem him doing that. But after almost 20 years of such preachings, turning around and providing pubs under his name with ready-mades, well excuse me but in my mind this is a load of hypocrisy and bullcrap

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in my mind it plays like this:

-GR makes a few million quid from making TV programs, where he bullies pub/restaurant owners for being lazy/incompetent/not caring enough/, because their food is bought, is not fresh, etc etc...

-He repeatedly goes on TV saying how freshness, putting in the effort, showing love and care for the food products, makes a difference, and customers appreciate it.

- He bashes MPW and Delia for their decisions to start incorporating "ready-made" products in their cooking

-he opens a bunch of gastropubs

- he provides the gastropubs with ready-made products

- he replies that it is all OK to use Ramsay ready-made products, because well.. it is "RAMSAY READY-MADE products".

If he had not being so dogmatic on his "preachings" about the "freshness, love, care, good honest cooking" all along his TV and public carreer, I would not have a problem him doing that. But after almost 20 years of such preachings, turning around and providing pubs under his name with ready-mades, well excuse me but in my mind this is a load of hypocrisy and bullcrap

I think the argument about the differences between "ready made" and "pre-prepped in an offsite kitchen" have been well made in previous posts.

I do remember the recent episode were he rejected the "ready made" boil in a bag lamb shank. IIRC it had an un-refrigerated shelf life of 18 months (I wonder what chemical concoction achieves that). I would assume the sous-vide preps from his kitchens have a shelf like measured in hours, possibly days. to me that is a completely different proposition.

I am certain most of Ramsay's target market do appreciate the fundamental difference, and will still eat at the pubs/restaurants. And if anything a bit of controversy probably won't harm Kitchen Nightmares of the F-Word. My guess is that 90% of his restaurant/pub customers are no longer the same audience as those for his TV programmes.

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