GORDON Ramsay has branded rival chef Michel Roux a “pompous old fart” after he banned diners from Instagramming pictures of their food at his Michelin-starred restaurant.
The Hell’s Kitchen star took to Twitter this morning (FRI) saying chefs should be grateful that foodies are promoting meals and hailed it as “free promotion”.
The 50-year-old from Johnstone, Renfrewshire, also revealed how he is influenced by images of good-looking food when deciding where he eats.
Ramsay was responding to news that brothers Michel and Albert Roux had introduced the ban and erected a sign reading “No photos, please” outside their triple Michelin restaurant, The Waterside Inn in Bray, Berks.
Hitting out at the decision in a series of tweets, Ramsay wrote on Twitter: “How bloody pompous!
“It’s a compliment to the chef the fact that customers want to take a pictures of dishes they’ve paid for – it’s 2017.
“If I see a great looking picture posted, I’ll want to go and eat there immediately, he’s just an old fart who’s forgotten to move on!
“It’s a free promotion they should be grateful for, can you imagine being asked not to take a picture of Ed Sheeran singing.
“It’s also a wake up call to us chefs when we get it wrong.
“Customers vote with their feet, pictures create huge followers and excite potential business.”
He added: “The fact that even @MichelinGuideUK @guideMichelinFR are posting exciting pictures from their experiences is such a breath of fresh air…”
His post’s have attracted over 1,000 retweets within twenty minutes of posting and attracted dozens of comments.
Christian McIntyre said: “For some people, the experience may truly be once-in-a-lifetime, and the presentation of food is a huge part of that. Memorialise it.
“As long as one diner isn’t interfering with another’s experience (with a flash, etc.), what difference does it make?”
Sam Boulter wrote: “Couldn’t agree with you more. If people want to take photos of the meal that they have paid for, then they should be able to do so.”
Paul Laurie wrote: “Don’t we eat with our eyes anyway??? Pictures of food are some of the most beautiful pictures I’ve ever seen! #foodpictures #Socialfood.”
And Katie Mahoney said: “Why go to all the work to stage their food properly if they don’t want people to admire it?”
Roux, 76, who founded the restaurant with his brother, Albert, 82, and helped it to gain its third star in 1985, said he wanted customers to focus on taste.
Yesterday Michel Roux said he was so upset with customers photographing their food, he has been forced to put a sign up.
He was reported to have said: ‘I’m really getting so upset about people taking pictures. We put up a card at the door – “No photos, please.’”
‘What are they doing? Maybe once during the meal you want to take a little photo of something because it’s unusual.
‘But what about the flavours? A picture on a phone cannot possibly capture the flavours.’”
A spokeswoman for The Waterside Inn said this afternoon that neither Michel Roux nor the restaurant would be responding to Ramsay’s tweets.
The spat between the two comes after Roux branded Ramsay “appalling” in 2010 despite having taught him for two years.
He reportedly said at the time: “That guy is not better than anyone else; he’s a good chef but certainly not one of the best we have trained.
“When you’ve got 5,000 or 10,000 people paying to see him do a demo, I’m thinking the world is mad.
“I find his behaviour appalling, totally unacceptable.”
Roux added: “He never behaved like that when he was with us. He was about 22 or 24 and a docile young man.
“I think it’s the media world that made him like that, to use the F-word every minute. Now he is enjoying it, it’s bad news.”
In another jibe, Michel hailed one of Ramsay’s most famous rivals, Marco Pierre White, as being better than him in the kitchen.
He said: “Marco was one of ours as well, he is a very good cook, one of the best I’ve seen.
“He’s got palate, flair — another scale to Ramsay.”