Yes, Marco made me cry. (But who's laughing now, says Gordon Ramsay)

Gordon Ramsay, the uncompromising Scottish chef who has taken swearing, threatening behaviour and verbal abuse to a new level on British television, was once reduced to "a blubbering wreck" by a fellow celebrity chef, it emerged yesterday.

In his soon-to-be-published autobiography, Marco Pierre White claims he dramatically "broke" Ramsay, who used to work for him at Harvey's restaurant in Wandsworth, south London, turning the fiery Scot into a sobbing mess.

A spokesman for Ramsay yesterday admitted that there was "some truth" in the claim, but added that the hard-headed star of Hell's Kitchen and The F-Word was only 20 years old at the time, and just starting out in the restaurant world.

In his forthcoming memoir, White, 44, writes of the incident: "I don't recall what he'd done wrong but I yelled at him and he lost it.

"Gordon crouched down in the corner of the kitchen, buried his head in his hands and started sobbing. 'I don't care what you do to me,' he said as he wept. 'Hit me. I don't care. Sack me. I don't care.'"

It is a story that will not only surprise Ramsay-watchers, but also no doubt serve to comfort the countless celebrities, chefs and restaurant staff that Ramsay, 39, has torn strips off during the course of his career - particularly in his television programmes.

White and Ramsay, who were once very close, are now not on speaking terms after a number of very public bust-ups.

In his memoir, White Lies, which is published next month, White - who was the youngest chef ever to gain three Michelin stars - describes another of these rows. The more recent conflagration took place at Heston Blumenthal's celebrated Fat Duck restaurant at Bray, Berkshire.

"I wasn't on speaking terms with Gordon, but by coincidence he happened to be in the restaurant on the same day," writes White.

"I said, 'You'll have to ask him to leave'. Heston called Gordon away from the table. 'Gordon, Marco says he's not going to stay if you are here. I think you should have a word with him ...'

"Gordon came into the garden and said, 'Thank you very much Marco for ruining a nice day.'

"I said, 'Why don't you sue me for loss of enjoyment?' He came back with, 'You fat bastard. I've always wanted to call you that.' I said, 'Is that the best you can do?' Gordon left. There was silence in the garden."

Yesterday, Ramsay's spokesman said the chef, who is currently on holiday, would not be "descending into a slanging match" with his former mentor, whom he still respects and appreciates for giving him his break in the restaurant industry. However, he added that, aside from the Harvey's and Fat Duck incidents, not all of the stories in White Lies were necessarily true.

Although Ramsay will no doubt be hurt by the claims of his former friend and mentor, he has plenty of other, bigger things on his mind.

The young Scot left quaking and weeping behind White's hotplate in Wandsworth now has a restaurant empire of his own, valued at £60m earlier this month.

In the autumn, he will open restaurants in New York and Los Angeles, as well as launching his own US chat show. Ramsay also has a biography of his own, Humble Pie, due to be published in October - when White can presumably look forward to his just desserts.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
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 General

Recruitment Genius: Accounts Assistant - Fixed Term Contract - 6 Months

£15000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: One of the largest hospitality companies...

Recruitment Genius: Electricians - Fixed Wire Testing

£28000 - £32000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: As a result of significant cont...

Recruitment Genius: Customer Service Advisor

£16575 - £19000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An excellent opportunity is ava...

Recruitment Genius: Senior Digital Marketing Executive

£30000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This leading and innovative con...

Day In a Page

How to stop an asteroid hitting Earth: Would people co-operate to face down a global peril?

How to stop an asteroid hitting Earth

Would people cooperate to face a global peril?
Just one day to find €1.6bn: Greece edges nearer euro exit

One day to find €1.6bn

Greece is edging inexorably towards an exit from the euro
New 'Iron Man' augmented reality technology could help surgeons and firefighters, say scientists

'Iron Man' augmented reality technology could become reality

Holographic projections would provide extra information on objects in a person's visual field in real time
Sugary drinks 'are killing 184,000 adults around the world every year'

Sugary drinks are killing 184,000 adults around the world every year

The drinks that should be eliminated from people's diets
Pride of Place: Historians map out untold LGBT histories of locations throughout UK

Historians map out untold LGBT histories

Public are being asked to help improve the map
Lionel, Patti, Burt and The Who rock Glasto

Lionel, Patti, Burt and The Who rock Glasto

This was the year of 24-carat Golden Oldies
Paris Fashion Week

Paris Fashion Week

Thom Browne's scarecrows offer a rare beacon in commercial offerings
A year of the caliphate:

Isis, a year of the caliphate

Who can defeat the so-called 'Islamic State' – and how?
Marks and Spencer: Can a new team of designers put the spark back into the high-street brand?

Marks and Spencer

Can a new team of designers put the spark back into the high-street brand?
'We haven't invaded France': Italy's Prime Minister 'reclaims' Europe's highest peak

'We haven't invaded France'

Italy's Prime Minister 'reclaims' Europe's highest peak
Isis in Kobani: Why we ignore the worst of the massacres

Why do we ignore the worst of the massacres?

The West’s determination not to offend its Sunni allies helps Isis and puts us all at risk, says Patrick Cockburn
7/7 bombings 10 years on: Four emergency workers who saved lives recall the shocking day that 52 people were killed

Remembering 7/7 ten years on

Four emergency workers recall their memories of that day – and reveal how it's affected them ever since
Humans: Are the scientists developing robots in danger of replicating the hit Channel 4 drama?

They’re here to help

We want robots to do our drudge work, and to look enough like us for comfort. But are the scientists developing artificial intelligence in danger of replicating the TV drama Humans?
Time to lay these myths about the Deep South to rest

Time to lay these myths about the Deep South to rest

'Heritage' is a loaded word in the Dixie, but the Charleston killings show how dangerous it is to cling to a deadly past, says Rupert Cornwell
What exactly does 'one' mean? Court of Appeal passes judgement on thorny mathematical issue

What exactly does 'one' mean?

Court of Appeal passes judgement on thorny mathematical issue