New Yorker article. Buford on Ramsey
I don't know how long this will stay up on the New Yorker site. Very entertaining.
I was struck by how much petty crime/pilfering goes on at that level - both by patrons and staff. On the patron side, I'm not too suprised in retrospect - especially due to the celebrity element. People will swipe anything as a "souvenir."
You'd think there would be a level in the restaurant industry where staff would treat the opportunity to work at a top place as a career move, not merley a job to pay the college bills. His chefs seem loyal. What about the rest? All the cash tips being swiped? That's crazy. If I were an owner, I'd be more lunatic over that stuff than the food.
One of the items I found most interesting: Ramsay's small-plates menu in the bar was priced cheaply with the idea of upselling hard on pricier wines, which are attractive because of the high margins, lack of overhead (which I don't quite get: you have to store them properly), and nominal spoilage. I know the profits of the industry are heavily alcohol-centric, but I'd never seen this strategy so nakedly explicated.