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
News
Legendary blues and rock singer Joe Cocker has died of lung cancer, his management team as confirmed. He was 70
people70-year-old was most famous for 'You are So Beautiful'
News
people
Sport
Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho
footballLatest score and Twitter updates
Arts and Entertainment
David Hasselhof in Peter Pan
The US stars who've taken to UK panto, from Hasselhoff to Hall
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksA year of political gossip, levity and intrigue from the sharpest pen in Westminster
Life and Style
Approaching sale shopping in a smart way means that you’ll get the most out of your money
life + styleSales shopping tips and tricks from the experts
News
newsIt was due to be auctioned off for charity
Life and Style
A still from a scene cut from The Interview showing North Korean leader Kim Jong-un's death.
tech
Environment
Sir David Attenborough
environment... as well as a plant and a spider
Voices
'That's the legal bit done. Now on to the ceremony!'
voicesThe fight for marriage equality isn't over yet, says Siobhan Fenton
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

Austen Lloyd: Regulatory / Compliance / Exeter

Excellent Salary: Austen Lloyd: Exeter - An excellent opportunity for a Solici...

Ashdown Group: IT Support Technician - 12 Month Fixed Term - Shrewsbury

£17000 - £20000 per annum: Ashdown Group: IT Helpdesk Support Technician - 12 ...

The Jenrick Group: Maintenance Planner

£28000 - £32000 per annum + pension + holidays: The Jenrick Group: Maintenance...

The Jenrick Group: World Wide PLC Service Engineer

£30000 - £38000 per annum + pesion + holidays: The Jenrick Group: World Wide S...

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'