Foul-mouthed British chef Gordon Ramsay was rebuked on Tuesday by Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd, who said the celebrity reflected "a new form of low life" for insulting a high-profile female television reporter.
Ramsay sparked the latest row on Saturday when he showed a food-fair audience a photo of a nude woman on all fours, with multiple breasts and a pig's face, and said the image was of Australian television journalist Tracy Grimshaw.
Grimshaw, who had interviewed Ramsay the previous night on her national current affairs programme, hit back by describing Ramsay as an "arrogant narcissist" and "bully", with Rudd backing Grimshaw on Tuesday.
"All I could describe his remarks as reflecting is a new form of low life. I just think that's off, and offensive. Good on Tracy Grimshaw for coming out and giving him a left upper cut," Rudd told Australian radio.
Ramsay, the star of reality programmes such as Hell's Kitchen and Kitchen Nightmares which showcase his hot temper, foul language and fine cooking skills, is no stranger to controversy in Australia.
In 2008 he prompted a flood of complaints and a parliamentary review of broadcasting guidelines after an episode of Kitchen Nightmares in which he used a four-letter expletive more than 80 times in 40 minutes.
After the episode in early 2008, parliament told the television networks to review the way they rate programmes and how they consider coarse language.