Sunday, November 25, 2007

Kitchen Nightmares Casts in Indy!

According to an ad in this week's InTake, producers of Gordon Ramsey's restaurant turnaround show, Kitchen Nightmares, are looking for local restaurants to consider. If you've seen the show -- either the original BBC or American version -- then you know what these establishments are getting into. On the other hand, I can think of a few local restaurants desperately in need of Ramsey's menu and management help. Most of the establishments Ramsey tackles are owner-operated independents in deep financial trouble with complicated menus, unmotivated staff, and sub-par food.


Are you a chef, restaurant owner, or manager and want to apply? Send contact information to kitchennightmares at theconlincompany.com or call 310-387-6775. If you email, they ask that you put "Indianapolis" in the subject line. Maybe we should collect candidates and send in our own nominations. So, dear readers, what restaurants do you think are most in need of a visit and some tough love from Chef Ramsey?

38 comments:

Zappatista said...

I nominate Enrico's.

Anonymous said...

I nominate D'Vine, A Wine Bar. Terrible service!!

Anonymous said...

Deano's Vino

Keith and Esther said...

Dunaway's!

Sarah said...

MiAmigo's. My family loves it, but I can't abide by "salsa" that comes in a ketchup bottle and tastes like ketchup. Disgusting.

scubachef said...

"I Could Puke-o Joe's" = LaJolla without the deck. Could be a good location for a restaurant.

Another downtown abomination is the Chinese place on Delaware just a little south of Barcelona. Just horrible. Textured-gristle meat-like product in glop. A "good" Chinese/Vietnamese/Thai/Pan-Asian place could flourish there.

Anonymous said...

Definitely would nominate Aesop's Tables. It's still such a primo location, but they haven't been trying at all for the last 8 years or so. The patio furniture is utterly haggard and worn looking, the menu hasn't been updated in forever, and when I jog past there, I frequently see a dry erase board with such fascinating specials as "Miller Lite $1." Oy! But it could be so cute--and packed out every night at that location!

Anonymous said...

R Bistro

Anonymous said...

H2O Sushi, please.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
Deano's Vino

11/25/2007 4:03 PM


Beyond hope!

K said...

Aesop's Tables is a great suggestion. I'd also nominate Chatham Tap (boring, bland, uninspired menu), Aristicrat, and Midtown Grill.

Rex, the FudGai said...

Huzzah to my wife, dear constant reader of FMDM, for pointing me in your direction, this is a fun read.

Too bad that The Anchor Inn and Cafe Europa succumbed before this choice opportunity, because for way different reasons, they both deserved a Ramsey looksee.

As for the current crop, I'd have to go with:

Enrico's
Jazz Kitchen
Da Blue Lagoon
Nickel Plate Bar & Grill
Huachinango
Hella's
Acapulco Joe's

braingirl said...

You guys are good! These are all excellent suggestions.

scubachef said...

Rex,
Why Hella's? I'd say they're right in the fat part of the curve for their type (Greek/Med). Their Lamb Kabobs are juicy and tender - and beat any others in town, I believe. Their service is usually good, probably only topped by Greek Islands (in terms of being made to feel Welcome). Santorini may have a nicer room, but their food is blander. The Bosphorus is more expensive (and too salty) and in a weird location. Just my 2 cents.

Anonymous said...

Enrico's!
My husband and I used to go there many years ago when the food was still good, not fantastic- but good. It took a slide under new owners some years back. The space needs a facelift, and it's a small place that could be a wonderful upscale spot if given some attention.

braingirl said...

Isn't Enrico's in the same spot at that old fondue place? I can't remember the name of it, but it's at Glendale and would be on the North side of what is now LA Fitness. Or am I thinking of another place? (And what was that place called -- it closed several years ago but I remember a Kahn's port tasting there ages ago.)

Jazz Kitchen is good recommendation.

KC said...

The fondue place was Shaffer's. And Enrico's is near it, but slightly north and on the west side of the street (I think just south of MCL). Funny that Enrico's was mentioned; I drove by it yesterday and thought what a great place it could be compared to what it is.

I'd also nominate LaJolla; even their margaritas are terrible. And I haven't found Music Mill's food to be worth the trip, even pre-show.

braingirl said...

Yes! Shaffers! Thank you!

The sad thing about LaJolla is that even for as terrible as they are, they always seem packed, at least in the summer.

Anonymous said...

Enrico's could use the help. If I were Ramsey, then I would think they need:

1. an attitude adjustment for the waitstaff
2. a new decor
3. fresh, local produce on the menu
4. a simplified menu with four starters, six entrees and three desserts.
5. the owner-manger needs to stop doing [insert fault here].

I haven't seen an episode of the American version of kitchen nightmares - is this how they still play?

braingirl said...

Pretty much -- instead of the classey Ramsey voice over, they have a Fox announcer and a little bit more focus on the drama. (Seems like the Beeb version focuses on the food just a bit more.) But the basic premise is the same. Ramsey still throws up occasionally and we get the obligatory bare-chested shot when he changes into his chef's coat.

Anonymous said...

Glass Chimney in Carmel

Keith and Esther said...

The Glass Chimney would be a perfect candidate. It is very much a dying restaurant, although I doubt you will find the sensational "nightmares" the show is known for.

Anonymous said...

D'Vine -- weak wine list for a wine restaurant. weaker service
Acapulco Joe's -- tex schmex
H2O -- way over rated
Hella's -- greek food the way the romans would make it

Sarah said...

Music Mill was a good suggestion. The menu/vibe just doesn't seem to fit the venue. When I choose a restuarant, I'm hankering for a certain flavor. Which is their problem - I can't recall anything on their menu I'd start randomly craving.

Anonymous said...

Chanteclaire

Marge said...

Definitely H20. The only thing good there is the ice cream. The sushi is second rate at best.

Anonymous said...

Don't forget about the cookies, they are good too.

Eli

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

^^^Ugh, what happened to civility in this world?

Anonymous said...

Elbow Room. It's got the location, ample space, and lack of surrounding competition. I have lived nearby for years and am rarely compelled to go there. I give it a try every now and then and always wish for better selection and better fries. Some pasta dishes or bettern entrees, please!

Anonymous said...

I nominate 14 west!

Andrea said...

I'll second La Jolla, such a waste of that wonderful location. I love the idea of sitting on the deck with friends, watching the goings on. Sadly the reality falls far short. They served probably the worst meal I've ever had in Indianapolis.

mass ave junkie said...

La Jolla!

btw, I think of the Elbow Room as a bar, not a restaurant.

Anonymous said...

Don't touch the Elbow Room!! Yummy fried stuff and screaming waitstaff is part of the charm.

Broad Ripple Steakhouse is my nomination. The wacky chef would be FANTASTIC versus Ramsey. And the food doesn't completely suck, but there's vast room for improvement.

Anonymous said...

La Jolla is beyond any help. Flat out, some of the worst food I have ever eaten.

Anonymous said...

I heard the Elbow Room is under new ownership? Does anyone know if thats true?

Anonymous said...

I'm a little surprised at the repeat nominations for Enrico's. I just visited there for the first time a couple weeks ago, and aside from inexplicably disastrous (but pleasant) service, every single entree was terrific. Sure the room was dated and maybe a little dusty, but it was charming in a "Renee's" way.

La Jolla has been awful since it opened. I went once, right after El Matador closed, and have never been back since. Bottled beer is the only safe bet there.

BARcelona could definitely use Gordon's help.

RJ said...

La Jolla! What a beautiful location with the worst food this side of the Rio Grande!