Ramsay proves a kitchen nightmare for New Yorkers

* Three weeks ago, Gordon Ramsay finally brought his brand of Michelin-starred, potty-mouthed cookery to New York. And his new £3.8m restaurant - cunningly titled Gordon Ramsay at The London - has teething problems.

He awaits the make-or-break review from the ruthless New York Times critic, Frank Bruni - who has complained he could only occupy a table for a maximum of two hours. And staff reportedly threatened to walk out during a row over tips.

Now, Gordon's neighbours have declared war on his establishment, amassing a long list of complaints including blocked pavements, obscene noise levels and damage to residents' breathing.

"Two of our shareholders have had to seek medical attention for respiratory problems caused by particulate matter from the garbage truck," a local firebrand tells Caterer and Hotelkeeper magazine. "And the exhaust fan and air conditioning unit drone incessantly at jet engine levels. We cannot sleep or work."

Ramsay's spokeswoman says that the chef "has been warmly welcomed by the neighbourhood and is committed to ensuring their comfort". (More than he ensures his kitchen staff.)

She adds that "such challenges are not uncommon during a major construction project", and insists the "complaint" [sic] was immediately addressed.

Residents say grievances continue to flood in, and have fought for a meeting between the factions on 19 December to demand action.

Perhaps it's better if Gordon stays in the kitchen that night...

* The bouncers at nifty West End club Mo* vida clearly didn't watch I'm a Celebrity Get Me Out of Here. (Good for them.)

Cue bemused mutters of "Who he?" when contestant David Gest turned up uninvited at designer Roberto Cavalli's vodka launch party on Wednesday.

The American television producer known for his short marriage to Liza Minnelli, was welcomed downstairs to the VIP room.

Fellow I'm a Celebrity contestant Toby Anstis near-crushed a table of surprised journalists to talk to Gest: "Come on David, let's go out and dance with some girls."

Alas. David was more interested in eating. After polishing off his pasta, Gest presented the writer Simon Mills, his unwitting co- diner, with a large red lapel badge thoughtfully bearing the motto: "Vaginica is my maid." (During I'm a Celebrity, Gest claimed he had a maid called Vaginica Seaman.)

Just what must one do to be so-honoured?

Says Mills, darkly: "You don't want to know."

He adds: "He asked if he can go on safari with me."

* Screams of "heresy" from Morrissey fans. Tony Wilson the godfather of Manchester's music scene, has launched a vitriolic attack on the singer just a week ahead of a public vote to decide if he will be Britain's "Living Icon".

Wilson, the former Haçienda nightclub boss and label manager behind New Order and Happy Mondays, tells me: "Steven [Morrissey] is a nasty human being. He treats people like shit and has done throughout his career. Smiths fans confuse the art with the artist."

Morrissey declined to comment. The city's most famous musical export is on the final shortlist of three - up against Sir Paul McCartney and, mercifully, Sir David Attenborough. The Living Icon will be announced on BBC2's Culture Show next Saturday.

No doubt Morrissey would greet a victory with characteristic jubilation.

* Thank you for the many suggestions for Cherie Blair'sDesert Island Discs. So many requests for Tammy Wynette's cowboy classic "Stand by Your Man", and "The Best Things in Life are Free" (Luther Vandross/Janet Jackson).

Other notables: "Summer Holiday" (Cliff ), "Money, Money, Money" (Abba), "Jailhouse Rock" (Elvis) and "Oh Carol" (Bobby Vee). Shame on those of you who proposed "Liar Liar" by The Castaways.

But the winner of a bottle of bubbly from Pandora's well-stocked cellar is Cheltenham's David Boulter, for"Man Next Door" by Bristol trip-hopsters Massive Attack: "There is a man that lives next door / In my neighbourhood [repeat] / And he gets me down... / He gets in so late at night / Always a fuss and fight [repeat] / All through the night."

* Thwack! I'm delighted to hear that pride may be restored to English cricket's miserable winter Down Under. The All-Party Parliamentary Cricket Team departs this turf on 16 December to seek revenge for our miserable capitulation in Oz to Shane Warne & Co.

Our boys play the New Zealand Parliament in Wellington Botanical Gardens on 20 December, then a grudge two-game rubber against the Australian Parliament, in Melbourne on 28 December and then Bowral, Sir Donald Bradman's ground, on 4 January.

"We hope to do at least as well as England," laughs captain Graham Allen MP (Lab). "Each player's batting average should be the same as his age. So we'll open with Lord Stewartby (71), partnered by Baron Davies of Oldham (67) or Alan Keen MP (69). We train in nets at The Oval and have blood transfusions, like long-distance runners."

pandora@independent.co.uk

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
PROMOTED VIDEO
ebooks
ebooksA year of political gossip, levity and intrigue from the sharpest pen in Westminster
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs People

Recruitment Genius: HR Manager

£25000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: They are in need of a HR Manage...

h2 Recruit Ltd: Business Development Manager - HR Consultancy - £65,000 OTE

£35000 - £40000 per annum + £65,000 OTE: h2 Recruit Ltd: London, Birmingham, M...

Day In a Page

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

Autism-friendly theatre

Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all
The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there
The 12 ways of Christmas: Spare a thought for those who will be working to keep others safe during the festive season

The 12 ways of Christmas

We speak to a dozen people who will be working to keep others safe, happy and healthy over the holidays
Birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends, new study shows

The male exhibits strange behaviour

A new study shows that birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends...
Diaries of Evelyn Waugh, Virginia Woolf and Noël Coward reveal how they coped with the December blues

Famous diaries: Christmas week in history

Noël Coward parties into the night, Alan Clark bemoans the cost of servants, Evelyn Waugh ponders his drinking…
From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

The great tradition of St Paul and Zola reached its nadir with a hungry worker's rant to Russell Brand, says DJ Taylor
A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore: A prodigal daughter has a breakthrough

A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore

The story was published earlier this month in 'Poor Souls' Light: Seven Curious Tales'