Monday 16 September 2019

Chef Marco Pierre White branded a 'rambling dinosaur' after calling women 'more emotional in the kitchen'

INSIGHT: Marco Pierre White. Picture: David Conachy
INSIGHT: Marco Pierre White. Picture: David Conachy

Rachel Farrell and Niamh Horan

CELEBRITY chef Marco Pierre White has faced backlash from the public after saying that women "can't take pressure" in the kitchen.

In an exclusive interview with the Sunday Independent last weekend, Pierre White said: "The real positive with men is that men can absorb pressure better, that's the main difference, because they are not as emotional and they don't take things personally."

He added: "Men can absorb pressure in busy moments," adding that, "maybe the reason why women can't take pressure as much is because, in a kitchen, there might be 20 men and two women so they haven't got that friendship around them.

"Can you imagine if you were in a kitchen with 20 women? It's different. So, in a strange sort of way, you are filling out numbers and you haven't got people to talk to in the same way as you can with your own."

But restaurateurs and members of the public took to social media to call out the "incredible sexism" from the TV chef.

Alberto Rossi, executive chef at Dublin's InterContinental Hotel described it as "a let down".

"I respected this chef for all his accomplishments in the kitchen," he said. "What a let down this is; and then we will have to watch him in TV patrionising away in a matriarchal culture so strong in Ireland."

Neil Rankin, owner of the Temper restaurants in London, said Pierre White's comments were "clickbait nonsense".

"The only real difference between men and women in the kitchen is that men don’t have to put up with this nauseating baseless antiquated bullsh*t everyday," Rankin said on Instagram.

"Women not only have to do the same exact job in every area of hospitality but also have had to contend with every oppressive jibe in the book from day one and not only from their colleagues but from industry leaders like this in 2019.

He added: "The whole article if you read it actually comes up the conclusion that women are better in the kitchen but unfortunately via all this clickbait nonsense from a rambling dinosaur."

Speaking to the Sunday Independent ahead of a new series of The Restaurant, Pierre White credited female chefs for being well-turned-out and punctual, but when asked what men bring to the table that women don't, he said: "They've got the physical strength."

"Look at the size of some of the pans you are carrying. Can you imagine you're a lady in the kitchen and saying 'will you carry that pan for me?' You don't want to say that do you?... So men are physically stronger and they can absorb the pressure of the kitchen better," he said.

"What tends to happen with females in the kitchen is that they tend to go to larder or they tend to go to pastry, they are not in the main kitchen, and so that's why you see a lot of female pastry chefs... they haven't got the pressure."

However the former Michelin-starred chef explained that women ultimately pip men at the post for qualities they bring to the job, revealing: "We have all got strengths and weaknesses, but ladies, in many ways, have more qualities than men in a kitchen because your palate is number one, consistency is number two, punctuality is number three and ladies might go out on a Friday night - but they still turn up on a Saturday morning. Men tend to push it a bit too far and then ring in sick."

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