Where it all began: Royal Doulton exclusively for Gordon Ramsay

Multi-Michelin-starred chef Gordon Ramsay is a name we are all familiar with. His award-winning kitchens produce some of the finest dishes in the world, and back in 2005, we collaborated to create Royal Doulton exclusively for Gordon Ramsay. It began in one of Gordon’s restaurants, progressing to a casual yet classic collection, embracing the changing landscape in food.

With each collection, we looked to Gordon’s diverse restaurants and their accompanying themes to create pieces that would stand the test of time, just like our partnership with Gordon.

Today Maze, a staple of the range, has become one of our most loved collections. Sitting at the heart of our ongoing collaboration, it is subtle in design, and versatile enough to meet ever-changing needs and tastes when it comes to food. All pieces from the Maze collection are tried and tested at the Gordon Ramsay Academy, where a breadth of recipes and dishes are served. Ideal for a quiet bowl of pasta at home, or a sharing feast with friends, Maze is a modern classic. With its coupe shape and cool palette of colours, it’s come a long way since the very first Maze design.

We talk to Dik Delaney, Design Director, to explore where Maze began, the partnership with Gordon and more…

Talk us through the craft process for the Maze collection

Maze was designed as the world transitioned from formal dining into casual dining moments. From the beginning, everything surrounding the Maze collection, and the collaboration with Gordon, was based around classic and function-led design.

The idea was to craft an easy but refined collection, with truly timeless elements, that could service most food on the simple shape and design.

Did you work with Gordon to create these pieces?

Yes. Some people might not know that Gordon actually used to have Royal Doulton pieces in one of his restaurants. And the collaboration was simply a natural progression of that. It’s always been an organic partnership and I think that is really reflected in the longevity of it.

How did the design process begin?

Research started at Gordon’s Chelsea restaurant on Royal Hospital Road. It began with us looking at what Royal Doulton product was used in the restaurants.

So, originally in the restaurant, the plates used were plain white and they featured a wide rim, with embossing. They were a very classic form, in fine bone china, designed to reflect the elevated nature of the restaurant.

The idea was that the detail on the rim would focus the eyes on the food – we wanted to draw your eye straight to center stage. It’s this embossed detail you can see in today’s Maze collection.

How else was Maze inspired by this?

So we took inspiration from the ripple effect used on the rim of the flat plates, but we wanted a more functional piece. This was also why we moved from fine bone china to stoneware.

We wanted to echo that move from elegance to cosy, similar to how restaurant experiences began to transition from formal to gastro-pub at the time.

The colour you see in Maze now, and the textures featured in the pieces, were really a reflection of the Maze restaurants.

Discover the Maze collection, along with all the pieces from the Royal Doulton exclusively for Gordon Ramsay collection below.

You can also check out @gordonramsayacademy on Instagram to find recipes, food inspiration and more.