Notoriously tough double Michelin-starred chef Marcus Wareing has replaced Michel Roux Jr as the new judge on MasterChef: the Professionals

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Image: Michael Wareing replaces MasterChef’s Michel Roux Jr


He's smiling now, but during a previous guest appearance on MasterChef he reduced a contestant to tears

The uber-talented Marcus Wareing is a fearsome addition to the 7th series of MasterChef: the Professionals. The two Michelin-starred chef admits he's squared up to Gordon Ramsay, is renowned for his fine dining style and an ability to reduce contestestants to tears with his searingly honest opinions. He replaces Michel Roux Jr following his fall-out with the BBC.


What do we know about Wareing? Well, until now he wasn't a fan of celebrity chefs and has been quoted saying: "I’m not a TV personality. I could never match what Gordon does. I don’t have that big a personality. I’m good at getting up and running a restaurant.” So, what changed?


It turns out he's a HUGE fan of the MasterChef series. “I've been watching MasterChef since I was a young kid at catering college," says Wareing. "To now become part of the show is hugely exciting for me; to be asked is a true honour. Michel has left big shoes to fill and I am delighted to be working with Monica and Gregg on a new journey of discovery to find the next generation of Michelin-starred chefs.”


Fellow judge Gregg Wallace admits he's a massive Marcus fan. “One of the outstanding chefs of my era,” says Wallace. “I’m absolutely thrilled to be working with Marcus. He has complete and utter respect throughout the industry. My only query is will he have a beard or not!”


Indeed. But beard or no beard we reckon Mr Wareing will bring an added edge to the show and can't wait to see how he deals with the culinary wannabes. 


Wareing has trained with some of the best chefs including Anton Edelmann, Pierre Koffmann and Albert Roux, with time at The Savoy, Le Gavroche and Aubergine under his belt. He now runs Marcus at The Berkeley – one of only 11 restaurants with multiple Michelin stars in London – plus The Gilbert Scott at St Pancras station, and a third London venue, Tredwell's, will open soon.


Fancy giving his kind of cooking a whirl? Here are three of his very best recipes:


5 things you need to know about Marcus Wareing:

  1. He fell out with Gordon Ramsay when he was Head Chef at Pétrus, commenting that half of me thinks he’s a sad bastard and the other half still adores him”.
  2. He may not have Ramsay’s charisma but no chef wants to be on the receiving end of his piercing blue-eyed death stare. It’s quite something.
  3. He has the hairiest forearms ever seen in a professional kitchen (so far as we can tell, anyway).
  4. Don't bring your kids to his restaurants: "Do you really want to have something squawking and dribbling in front of you while you’re trying to have a nice meal?"
  5. Any guilty pleasures? Cold Galaxy chocolate straight out of the fridge, apparently.