- Chef Gordon Ramsay is famous for his no-holds-barred persona on popular TV shows like “Kitchen Nightmares” and “MasterChef.”
- Fans of the TV chef might be surprised to find out his favorite fast-food order is a double cheeseburger “animal style” from In-N-Out.
- Ramsay also has five children, competes in Ironman competitions, and almost became a professional soccer player.
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Gordon Ramsay is the second-richest chef in the world and is known for his colorful word choices on many TV shows.
He currently owns 35 restaurants across the world and has a net worth of over $60 million.
However, while Ramsay may be a force to be reckoned with in the kitchen, fans might be surprised to learn the TV chef has a softer side – and a love for fast food.
Here are 21 facts you probably didn’t know about Gordon Ramsay.
Gordon Ramsay is Scottish but was raised in England.
He was born in Johnstone, Scotland, on November 8, 1966. His family moved to Stratford-upon-Avon in England when Ramsay was 5 years old.
Ramsay almost pursued a career in professional football, or soccer, but didn't due to an injury.
At an early age, Ramsay decided to pursue a career in professional football (aka soccer).
At the age of 15, Ramsay joined professional football club the Glasgow Rangers. He played with the team for three years until a knee injury ended his dreams of becoming a professional footballer.
Ramsay received a vocational degree in hotel management before starting his culinary career.
After his sports career ended, Ramsay decided to enter the hotel business. He earned a degree in hotel management in 1987.
Ramsay became a head chef at 27 years old.
In his early culinary career, Ramsay apprenticed under Marco Pierre White, Joel Robuchon, and Guy Savoy, among others. At just 27 years old, however, Ramsay began his own career as a master chef. In 1993, he became head chef of the newly opened Aubergine restaurant in London.
In just three years, Ramsay earned the restaurant a two-star Michelin rating, and in 1995, he was named Newcomer of the Year at the prestigious Catey Awards.
Ramsay was once the highest-earning chef in the world.
Ramsay was once the richest chef in the world, due in part to his many television shows including "Hell's Kitchen," "Kitchen Nightmares," "MasterChef," "Hotel Hell," and "Faking It." According to Forbes, Ramsay's shows account for more $150 million yearly in ad sales for Fox. In addition, Ramsay owns 35 restaurants across the world.
As of 2019, Ramsay's personal net worth is reported to be $63 million. He is surpassed in wealth by British TV chef Jamie Oliver, despite his restaurant empire filing for bankruptcy in May 2019.
He has been married to his wife Tana for 23 years.
Gordon and Tana Ramsay have been married since December 21, 1996. They are well-known philanthropists.
The Gordon and Tana Ramsay Foundation helps to support the Great Ormond Street Hospital Children's Charity to "give some of the sickest children the best chance in life," according to the chef's website.
Ramsay has five children.
Ramsay's five children are Megan, 22, twins Holly Anna and Jack, both 20, Matilda, 18, and baby Oscar, whom the couple welcomed in April 2019.
His daughter Matilda also loves to cook.
Matilda, who also goes by Tilly, is the most famous Ramsay kid, with a huge social media following. A budding chef herself, Matilda is known for her own cooking show, "Matilda and the Ramsay Bunch," which aired its fifth season this past summer.
Matilda Ramsay has also been a guest on "MasterChef Junior" and on multiple late-night and talk shows alongside her father.
He doesn't plan on leaving any of his multimillion-dollar fortune to his children.
Ramsay shocked the world when he told the Telegraph that he would not be leaving a penny of his many millions to his children in his will.
"[My money is] definitely not going to them, and that's not in a mean way; it's to not spoil them," he said.
He further explained that his kids wouldn't completely go without his financial help, however.
"The only thing I've agreed with Tana is they get a 25% deposit on a flat, but not the whole flat," he said.
Ramsay said if he could choose his last meal on Earth, it would be beef Wellington.
Ramsay is a huge fan of the British dish, and many regard his own recipe as his greatest of all. In most of Ramsay's restaurants, you can find it on the menu.
However, Ramsay has revealed his favorite American food is grits topped with shrimp and Parmesan cheese.
Ramsay never eats airplane food but will snack beforehand.
"There's no f---ing way I eat on planes," Ramsay told Refinery29. "I worked for airlines for years, so I know where the food's been and where it goes, and how long it took before it got on board."
However, Ramsay makes sure to never go hungry on a long-haul flight by eating beforehand.
"A nice selection of Italian meats, a little glass of red wine, some sliced apples or pears with some Parmesan cheese, I'm like a pig in s---," he said.
Ramsay believes there are five things everyone should know how to cook.
In a question-and-answer thread on Reddit, Ramsay said everyone should know how to cook a "great burger," a healthy breakfast, a braising dish, a chicken dish, and an "amazing cake."
Ramsay is really into fitness and often competes alongside his wife.
Ramsay has participated in over 15 marathons, three ultra-marathons, three half-Ironmans, and two Ironman World Championships.
Ramsay's guilty pleasure is In-N-Out.
"People think Americans are obese and burgers are bad for them - they are delicious. In-N-Out burgers were extraordinary. I was so bad, I sat in the restaurant, had my double cheeseburger then minutes later I drove back around and got the same thing again to take away," he told Scottish newspaper the Sunday Mail. "I wish that they were set up in London because if there's one thing I miss flying out of LA, it's an In-N-Out Burger."
Ramsay orders his burgers "animal style," with mustard fried onto each meat patty, pickles, grilled onions, and extra spread.
Ramsay hates Hawaiian pizza.
"Pineapple does not go on top of pizza," he tweeted in 2017.
Ramsay also tasted the pizza on a Facebook Live.
"Imagine salty, sweet cardboard … because that's exactly what's gone in my mouth right now," he said. "This isn't a pizza … it's a mistake."
He speaks fluent French.
When Ramsay moved to France to study under some of the greatest chefs at the time, he said he couldn't speak "a word of French."
After becoming fluent in the language, he quickly got a promotion at Guy Savoy's Michelin-star restaurant. Now that he didn't have to work side jobs, he could explore Parisian cuisine for himself.
"I would go knocking on the doors for menus for a menu collection. I have over 3,500 menus now, I just love reading through them. They're all filed A-Z in a filing drawer at home, it's like a big pullout console at the end of the bed. It's always close to me, always," he told Restaurant Insider.
His favorite Disney movie is "Ratatouille."
When responding to a fan live-tweeting an episode of "24 Hours To Hell & Back," Ramsay referenced the Disney-Pixar movie.
Despite being known for swearing and his oftentimes harsh personality, Ramsay loves kids.
Since September 2013, Ramsay has hosted "MasterChef Junior," a cooking competition show for young home cooks. While the chef may be known for his harsh and often colorful personality, Ramsay is extremely supportive and kind to each and every kid who appears on the show.
"I talk to them in ways that I don't even talk to the adults - anyone in 'Hotel Hell,' or anything like that," he told Deadline. "It's quite a fascinating dynamic, but I put myself alongside them, standing there at 8, 9, 10 years of age, feeling inadequate, because I've been in that situation, and I know what it felt like ... to feel like that."
He nearly drowned while filming an episode of "The F Word."
According to the Daily Telegraph, while filming an episode of "The F Word" in 2008, Ramsay slipped off the side of a cliff. The chef fell into the icy water below and his boots and waterproof equipment started to drag him beneath the surface.
"I thought I was a goner. They say cats have nine lives. I've had 12 already and I don't know how many more I'll have," he told the Sun newspaper. "I remember thinking, 'Oh f---.' My boots and my waterproofs were dragging me down. I'm an extremely good swimmer, but I couldn't get to the surface. I was panicking and my lungs were filling with water."
"When I was underwater all I could think of was Tana and my kids. It wasn't until I was on the plane home I realized what a close call I'd had."
He was pulled to safety after his crew threw him a rope.
Ramsay and David Beckham are family friends.
The celebrity chef and former professional soccer player have been friends for years, and they even almost opened a restaurant together. Their families are also really close, but Ramsay has said that his kids are forbidden to date anyone from the Beckham clan.
"Over the past 10 years we've naturally got on," he told TV Magazine, according to The Sun. "I see how hard David and Victoria work. But the connection is our ambition to get all eight children through school, college, university, and then dust ourselves down, when the kids are in their 20s, as having been decent parents. That's hard. We feed off each other. Three girls and a boy, and three boys and a girl - you'd be amazed at the synergy."
Ramsay apparently isn't the biggest fan of Bobby Flay.
As for any rivalries with other celebrity chefs, the ever-honest Ramsay isn't afraid to call out fellow TV chef Bobby Flay.
While appearing on an episode of "The Late Late Show" with James Corden, Ramsay revealed he had been trying to nail Flay down to film a televised cook-off for charity for years.
"For the last five years, we've been trying to do this cook-off together in Vegas, for charity. And he won't sign the f---ng contract," Ramsay said.
The chef then proceeded to call Flay a rather colorful insult.
- Read more:
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