On tonight's edition of "Kitchen Nightmares" on Fox-TV, Chef Gordon Ramsay headed to Norwalk, Ohio to the "Mill Street Bistro." The owner, Joe Nagy is probably the most obnoxious he has ever met. He would put his "fine dining" restaurant against any other restaurant in the world, his employees are treated like dirt, and think he is an arrogant selfish jerk. Nothing is ever his fault, and it is about time Gordon Ramsay came to straighten this restaurant and its owner out.
The only reason Joe thinks the restaurant need help is lack of customers; not for any other reason. First, Joe meets Gordon at his farm which supplies the fresh food. Gordon was impressed with the farm. Joe told Gordon that he was self-taught by old-school Europeans. As a consultant in the food industry most of his life, he is fulfilling his passion by opening the farm-to-table restaurant. Gordon recognized his passion on the farm, but had not visited the restaurant yet.
Gordon entered the restaurant, he noticed the electric fireplace, although not generating heat, he said it was 95 degrees outside and asked Amy to turn it off. She was wearing a plastic name tag, and Gordon also asked her to remove it, because this is not a chain restaurant. He asked what was wrong with this "fine dining" bistro. She told him how Joe treats the guests, especially if they complain about the food. He ordered all the features; elk medallions served over a Portobello mushroom cap, the catch of the day; a trio of Ohio-raised bluegill, perch and large mouth bass. He ordered scallops en croute, vegetarian ravioli, Oysters Rockefeller, French onion soup and the elk quesadilla. Many items were severely overpriced.
As Joe was bragging about how fresh, the food was to the camera, his cook took Gordon's ravioli out of the freezer. Gordon met Bill, a server and then told him to remove his name tag, which he did gladly. He asked Bill what he thought was wrong? Bill told Gordon that they made no effort to market to the locals. With 16,000 people in the local area, Gordon cannot understand why the restaurant would ignore them. Bill would rate the food a five on a one-to-ten scale. The French onion soup was greasy, watery and lacking cheese. The Oysters Rockefeller had oil squirted around the rim. When Amy brought the soup back, Joe immediately went out to talk to Gordon. He asked him if he wanted another soup; Gordon told him it would take several hours to caramelize the onions for another batch and declined. He asked how the oysters were, which Gordon replied that the sauce was bitter, which occurs when oysters are frozen. He took the oysters back and told the camera that he was not intimidated by Gordon, after all, he has been all around and cooked for many chefs. When a server brought out a piece of cake adorned with flowers, Gordon said it looked more like a funeral than a dessert plate.
The scallops en croute was served with two micro carrots on top. When Gordon handed Joe back the micro carrots, he was annoyed because he has staff to do that, and Gordon should not hand him raw food. Joe told the camera that Gordon should not "bust his balls" about micro carrots that are served at the White House. The scallops were like rubber and the pastry atop was raw inside. Next was the elk quesadilla; with chewy and tough meat and unappetizing look. The vegetarian ravioli had oil squirted around like the oysters did. Gordon immediately opted out of them after seeing the cold ooze coming from one of the raviolis. Instead of farm-to-table, the food should be farm-to-garbage-can. When Amy brought them back, she was told they were hot when they left the kitchen. The catch of the day was greasy and tasted freezer-burned. The elk medallions were tough and Gordon asked Amy to bring them back to have Joe taste them. Joe said elk is supposed to have a distinctive bite to it. Gordon left and went to a local restaurant to eat.
When Gordon returned, he looked for Joe as the staff was waiting for the reaction. He told Gordon that never in his career, has anyone ever told him that his items were a piece of s***. He could not believe that Gordon would go down the street to eat. Gordon told him that he did not take a second or third mouthful of anything. The scallops were rubbery; the pastry was raw. Oyster Rockefeller was an oyster disaster. For the catch of the day; which one was fresh? Answered, by the chef, because Joe would not admit that they were frozen. Then Joe answered that they were quick frozen local fish. Joe would not answer any questions with a straight answer as the staff remained outside enjoying what they heard. The elk quesadilla was dry disgusting elk that should go nowhere near a quesadilla. Elk medallions were chewy and not appropriate for consumption; Joe told him because he wanted them medium rare was why they were that way. Joe asked Gordon if he had elk on his menu, and he replied; seasonally. He told Joe that his was not a chef and should stop pretending to be one. He swore he never told Gordon he was a chef; however, when he met him on the farm, he most definitely told him how he trained with European master chefs who took a liking to him. Gordon asked who did the cooking; when he replied that he was the chef, he was told to make up his mind. Gordon told him his bistro was not a "fine dining" bistro; he is a small man with a fake bistro shooting way above his station. He has totally misjudged his market, and his pretentious ideas are screwed. His store-bought chocolate cake garnished with fake flowers, raw carrots on top of raw pastry, Gordon has never come across a bistro like this in the world. Joe questioned; "the world?!" Then Gordon told him he was so f-king arrogant that he does not even listen to his customers, let alone his staff. Gordon learned more from the gifted young servers in the first twenty-minutes than from him all day. As they sat and clapped softly for what they heard, the staff was elated. Gordon told Joe he would not blow smoke up his phony ass; and that he was in complete denial. He was ignorant, defensive and in total denial about his food. Joe told him that if he was all that; Gordon was his twin. He told Gordon that he had been called by his name several times; Gordon told him that he could cook, unlike Joe.
Joe came outside after Gordon stormed out and told the camera that he knew more about elk, buffalo and beef than Gordon will ever know.
As Joe addressed the staff, in no uncertain terms, several customers were standing in the front overhearing every word he said. Gordon chose to watch the dinner service and how the guests were treated and if anything came back to the kitchen. He noticed a large red-lettered sign that said QUIET put up by Joe. When asked how the staff communicates, the sous chef shrugged his shoulders and would not talk. Joe did not even let the staff know what table the food was for; they had to guess.
As food came back, one person had an actual pebble in her ravioli. Gordon got a phone call from a recent ex-employee he reached out to. She shared with him pictures she took of rotten meat, withered vegetables, and store-bought steaks that Joe cuts up to resemble farm-fresh. Gordon went right to the storage room and uncovered the secrets and confronted Joe. As French onion soup was ready to go to a customer, Joe put raw onions in it because Gordon told him there were not enough onions in it. That was the last straw for Gordon, who told Joe if he wanted him out; he would leave one of the worst "Kitchen Nightmares" ever. To find out, see next week's episode for the meeting of lightening and thunder and see who wins.