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THE INSIDER: Fancy a ******* drink?

SOUTHPORT-BORN superchefMarcus Wareing (left) , the best pal and business partner of top TV swearer Gordon Ramsay (right) ,knows all about the price of fish (andmeat and wine) ...

And he also knows what the 10 celebrities will be going through in Gordon's made-for-TV restaurant, which is the setting for his new ITV series Hell's Kitchen.

Before be became his friend and equal,Marcus, whose life as a top London chef was featured in last night's ECHO, viewed his former boss as his mentor.

And,in typical Ramsay language,he says: ``Every b******ing he gave me in the kitchen was justified.''

So think on,Amanda Barrie! But back to the price of wine ... three years ago, a group of high-rolling investment bankers famously stumped up pounds 44,300 on five bottles of wine at Marcus's Petrus restaurant.

And the chef/patron says: ``There's been a similar bill since then,for pounds 41,000.''He adds: ``The cheapest wine we sell is pounds 18and the most expensive is a 1962 Petrus --a magnum for pounds 23,500.''

Just half a shandy then, please.
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Liverpool Echo (Liverpool, England)
Date:May 25, 2004
Words:181
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