After seven years of successfully running the St. Louis landmark Mama Campisi's Restaurant, owners Andrea and Lance were blindsided by employee theft: Two years later, business is spiraling and Chef Robert Irvine has just two days to address trust issues, frozen food in the kitchen and finances that aren't adding up if there's any chance of restoring this restaurant to its former glory.
Chef Robert Irvine ruffles quite a few feathers when he goes to Kokomo, Ind., to help the Duncan family save their 33-year-old business, Ducky's Family Restaurant. Robert's unflinching assessment of their terrible food and dysfunctional management style were hard enough to handle, but when the family and long-time staff start to be honest with each other is when emotions really erupt.
The Windsor 75 in Windsor, Conn., is just seven years old, but is filled with problems -- including an outdated decor, five different menus and an overworked staff -- but owner George can't get out of his own way to fix anything. George's wife and kids are fed up with the restaurant and George's stubborn ways. Can Chef Robert Irvine bring George and the restaurant out of the past in only two days?
This special episode dishes out real time trivia about Chef Robert Irvine and behind the scenes stories at the Coach Lamp Restaurant & Pub in Louisville, Ky. When Chef Robert arrives at the restaurant, he's baffled; the restaurant looks nice, the food tastes good and the owners are smart and knowledgeable. Robert has to sift through the puzzle pieces to discover why this restaurant is failing, and (over the owners' protests) come up with a completely outside-the-box plan to make the Coach Lamp shine.
This is Chef Robert's biggest mission yet as he and his team are heading to the Jersey Shore to transform not one, but two, locations that were devastated by Hurricane Sandy. With 3 days and $50,000 for the makeovers, Robert and his team will work to restore the LBI Pancake House to its former glory, and give the dedicated first responders of the Ship Bottom Fire Company a much deserved "thank you."
Chef Robert travels to Hagerstown, Md., on a mission to save the Georgia Boy Cafe. The stress of the restaurant is ruining the once loving relationship between owners Chuck and Montez, who now avoid each other at all costs or end up screaming at each other in front of their guests. Robert also needs to address the heaping health hazards in the kitchen, but first, he needs to get the owners back on speaking terms.
When engaged couple Tonya and Chad purchased the restaurant in La Porte, Ind., where Tonya used to work as a server, they named it Seven, in honor of their combined seven children. But this historically lucky number has been anything but for the restaurant. Chef Robert soon discovers that the food is bad, the management is worse, and the stained glass decor would better fit a church than a restaurant, but Seven's biggest problem may be Tonya's 19-year-old son, Jake, who is the main cook at the restaurant, despite his lack of training or passion.
Chef Robert Irvine may have met his match when he encounters the volatile owners of Mike LaSusa's Italian Restaurant in Oak Creek, Wis. Every time Patrick, Mary and their son, Mike, get together, they fight about everything from the food to serve to the artwork to hang on the wall. The two days Robert has for the renovation may not be enough time to turn this restaurant and family around, especially when one of the owners walks out and never returns.
Sal and Brenda's one-year old restaurant, Goombazz Big City Eatzz, has struggled to find a strong customer base and is now more than $300,000 in debt. When Chef Robert Irvine investigates Goombazz, he discovers that Sal's short temper is driving people away: Brenda, the staff and the beloved and departed GM. Robert has two days to make Sal realize that he is the biggest obstacle in the restaurant's success, before he loses everything and everyone.
In Plains, Mont., Chef Robert Irvine may have met one of the most clueless owners he's encountered at Heather's Country Kitchen. In the three years since the former stay-at-home mom impulsively purchased her namesake restaurant, she seemingly hasn't picked up much at all. In the course of two days, Robert has to manage the very high food and labor costs and also get Heather to embrace working with her headstrong daughters.
When Chef Robert Irvine first sees the Spunky Monkey Bar & Grill in Auburn, Wash., he's appalled by the restaurant's condition: inches of dust, mounds of grime, years of neglect, and an owner who doesn't seem to care at all. Robert and his team are at a complete loss as to which disaster to address first: the health code violations, the subpar food, the design roadblocks or the lackluster staff.
Chef Robert Irvine heads to Hillbillies Restaurant in Murphys, Calif., to investigate why Jami's breakfast and lunch spot is failing. While the name promises backwoods charm, Robert finds nothing charming about a decor consisting of rusty kitchen utensils on the wall and a dirty underwear clothesline on the ceiling. Getting rid of the clutter is only half of Robert's battle, as he also needs to turn Jami from world's biggest pushover to empowered business owner.
Julio purchased the San Francisco Mexican restaurant Estrada's six years ago and it has been anything but a fiesta. Already on the verge of closing once before, Julio and his girlfriend, Bernadette, are in over $400,000 worth of debt and seriously need Chef Robert Irvine's help. Robert quickly realizes that flavorless food and a lack of passion from the owners are at the center of Estrada's problems. Robert has two days to make Julio and Bernadette see that change is good and passion is necessary to keeping this 96-year-old restaurant alive.