Going to take them to hell and back is he?
We suspect so, although quite how Ramsay’s distinguished brand of overtly aggressive and foul-mouthed condemnation will sit with a BBC audience accustomed to more family-friendly cookery show fare remains to be seen.
What’s the set-up?
Ramsay tweeted out a video yesterday (15 January) saying he was looking for contestants with "passion, drive and a very strong work ethic" to take part in a new BBC One competition series that’ll air later this year. He stresses that they don’t have to be chefs, but should only apply if they have a "big, bold and exciting food or drink business idea". The 12 candidates chosen to take part will be put through a series of ‘relentless challenges’. And at the end of the process, the person who has proven themselves the most will receive an investment from Ramsay himself to take their idea to the next level.
So it’s basically The Apprentice?
In essence, yes. Think of it as a Sugar-free version, with a hint of Million Pound Menu thrown in for good measure. Who knows, maybe Ramsay could even get Fred Sirieix and Gino D'Acampo to take on the Karren Brady and Claude Littner roles: Fred to appraise the contestant’s front of house manner, and Gino to assess which one he’d most like to cover with Nutella.
Do we know anything about the challenges?
Details are a little thin on the ground, although the BBC says they will be ‘inspired by [Ramsay’s] highly successful career’. So presumably it’ll involve trying to not to fall off a cliff while hunting for puffins; working out how to turn around the fortunes of a failing restaurant business in a brutish manor; and screaming “where’s the lamb sauce” at a disgruntled commis during a particularly gruelling dinner service.
What’s in it for Ramsay?
When all’s said and done it’s good publicity for the chef restaurateur, who last year faced a bit of a backlash after his newly-opened Japanese-inspired Lucky Cat restaurant in Mayfair was accused of cultural appropriation. Ramsay says he “can’t wait to search across the country unearthing some of Britain’s most entrepreneurial talent”, with the casting call asking for concept ideas that range from food-related products and apps, to food trucks and subscription boxes. In the midst of an ever-changing industry, it’ll show Ramsay to be championing the future of food and moving with the times, which is no bad thing.