Sunday, 24 June 2012

US Season 5 - Charlie's Italian Bistro - CLOSED

Open or closed? CLOSED
Location: La Verne, CA

Episode Summary: Owner Tatiana began working at the restaurant as a waitress and was offered the chance to buy the restaurant in 2008, she turned to family to help raising the funds and her mother and sister financed the purchase with their houses as security. Tatiana hasn't changed anything, same name, menu and chef and the staff feel the old menu and bad food are the reason for lack of customers alongside Tatiana not knowing how to manage a restaurant and not respecting the staff. Her mother and sister are not happy as their homes are at risk if the restaurant does not succeed. Gordon arrives to find there is no Charlie and hasn't been for a long time and is also shocked to learn about the houses at risk and that the family have no say despite them putting all their money in and Tatiana has only put in around $1000. 

Gordon sits down to taste the food, he orders bread, ravioli, frutti di mare, lasagna and Pizza. He is not impressed with the food, the bread was dreadful, the ravioli raw and the opposite end with overcooked frutti di mare. He describes the lasagna as bizarre tasting and the pizza as frozen. Tatiana does not pass the comments to the chef as she trusts chef Casimiro. He inspects the kitchen and finds frozen meatballs and pasta. Gordon decides he wants the chefs to cook the meatballs from scratch, setting a challenge for Casimiro and sous chef Daniella to coko the best meatball, he loves Daniellas. The food goes out slowly as Casimiro does only one ticket at a time and when customers food goes out they are not happy with it. Casimiro burns meatballs and when criticised refuses to cook. Gordon tells Tatiana to step up and she fires Casimiro. 

As the restaurant is missing a chef Gordon introduces his own chef Jonathon who will work for them for a month and he will help find a new head chef. Gordon encourages Tatiana to become more involved with the kitchen and teaches her to make lasagna and pizza. Gordon decides to hastily revamp the menu with homemade and fresh items. They relaunch the restaurant that evening, the food starts to go out quickly but some customers are not getting their dishes. The problem is discovered to be in communication and Gordon tells them to communicate with Jonathon to get it right. He tells Tatiana to step up with managing the staff. The food goes out quicker and is enjoyed by the customers. Tatiana is no longer embarassed of the restaurant and the relationships in the family are better.

What Happened Next: Jonathon stayed on for a month keeping the high standards and helped them to find and train a new head chef. The restaurant is now closed, Yelp reviews after filming were mixed as to whether it has improved.

Extra Reading


Kitchen Nightmares coming to La Verne...and you can be a part


Love Hotel Hell? Visit my Hotel Hell blog here.

33 comments:

  1. According to Yelp reviews this restaurant closed recently.

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  2. It appears that Charlie's has closed as of sometime in August per her Yelp page.

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  3. That sucks..that owner is sexy and I was hoping to hit on her

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    1. No kidding. My wife and I just watched it and we were both marveling at her magnificent boobs, especially when she had on the black top ... and when she bent over to try out the new dishes.

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    2. You actually WANT that sniveling train wreck? Boy, aren't you a glutton for punishment.

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    3. Genevive was pretty sexy also

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    4. Yes Genevieve is so cute !!!

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    5. Maybe if she scraped off the first three layers of makeup and promised to be quiet...

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    6. I'd hit that.

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  4. Oh hell no, the owner is ugly...Daniella the sous chef was hot! I wonder were she works now!

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    1. please let me know too :D

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  5. I feel bad for the mom and sister that this place closed, but the owner, Tatianna, was one of the biggest bitches I've seen on the show. And a moron to boot!

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    1. I just watched this episode. I agree she was a bitch. She didn't have a clue on how to run a restaurant. She barely had the backbone to fire the chef ( which I laughed, when she fired him and tried to give him a hug afterwards. lol).

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  6. The last chef that was therehelp to r.un h.er business into the ground on purpose. Damn sociopath. When she cried after firing him I thought you mighta had a thing for him. I think he flirted with her and used her! That's why you laugh 1 Gordon Ramsay said that the food was no good ni didn't care he wouldn't serve that food in his house then he laughed jerk I hope you never get the job

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    1. Is there an English version of what you wrote?

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    2. I think it was her mum that had a thing for him, plus he has been there as long as she has and so they had that friendship. 10 Years is a long time to be friends with someone let alone co workers too.

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  7. Owner is sexy as hell! she needs a better mentor, however she was way behind after her first chef screwed her over.

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  8. Agreed Daniella is VERY nice looking.

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  9. I had a feeling this was going to be a case of 'too little too late.' I guess I was right. : /

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  10. What a shame it closed. I think Tatiana and Daniella are both hotties! HE HE

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  11. Tatiana had been at Charlies since she was 20, first serving and then eventually owning it. She didn't see it was the head "chef" that was the main issue and so it caused the failure of the business 3 times. Sad to see the place has closed as i go to LA quite a bit and would have loved to stop in and have a flirt.
    Tatiana was stunning and her cute voice was a pleasure. The female chef wasn't too bad either. It's a shame that the place is closed, these people now have to find other work and none of us will ever get to try the famous meatballs.

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  12. Oh God, I wonder what happened to the sister and mother. I hope they're okay. Tatiana needed to think about them before she dragged them into this mess. I can't believe anyone would be that blind about the state of a restaurant's reputation, and couldn't see that anything (especially the chef) needed to be changed. Total moron.

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  13. They lost the house due to debit of the business. Mother is gone and the sisters no longer talk to each other.

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    1. Mother is gone?!?!? As in "gone to another country" or "dead"??? Where did you get this information?

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    2. I'm disgusted at what Dani did to her family. I hope her sister wised up and completely cut that whiny, idiotic, cowardly, toxic witch out of her life. I'm equally disgusted at Casimiro. The man gives all Hispanics a bad name.

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    3. Somehow I doubt whether this information is legit, I wouldn't call Dani a witch or idiotic by any means, I agree she shouldn't have gotten her family into this, but they could've just said no to her.

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  14. I would love to be in the middle of Tatiana and Genevive! Two hotties!!

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  15. When you go from being an employee to being an employer, it is like going from one world to the next, and all the things you learn growing up don't apply anymore. Now you are one of THEM who are making the standards and the one they'll go to for money. Being an owner means you'll have to make sure that there is a "firewall" between the business and your own personal life. It is normally hard to do as the one lending you money wants a collateral that doesn't vaporize if/when things goes pear shaped and takes off for Valhalla. Running a restaurant takes more than having been a waiter/waitress. It takes business education, it takes culinary education and it takes a backbone of MA253 steel and skin like a bank vault. This episode shows what happens when help arrives too late. It is easy to say that she should have done this or the other, the fact is that she did what she thought was right. She trusted in a charlatan who probably saw her and the restaurant as a meal ticket - and not as an integral part of his life. He was so complaisant that he really needed to have his ass kicked. A chef that can't cook - that is truly sad. But then again: You can be a great chef and still have to close if you are not a tough businessman at the same time. That is why there are so few successful restaurateurs in the world: It takes so many properties that normally don't coexist in one and the same person, so that it takes people who are a breed apart from the rest of us. Gordon may be a potty mouth, but he is one of very few that has all that it takes. He isn't perfect, but close enough to get away with it - and that is what counts at the end of the day. :D

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  16. I actually think that Casimiro wanted to be let go. It seemed like it was a relief to him when she fired him. It could be that the poor quality was do to him wanting to go

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  17. Why anyone would think that a former waitress suddenly would have the know-how to run/manage a restaurant is beyond me. I'm guessing that the dim-witted apple didn't fall far from the tree. A fool and their money are soon parted....

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  18. Oh no. Tatiana needed the wakeup call, but her mum and sister were hardworking people. I feel really bad for them. I hope they didn't lose their houses over this madness.

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  19. The episode does not explain why Tatiana is so protective of her indifferent chef Casimiro. She is falling all over herself to defend and shield him, at the expense of her own family - which seems strange without further explanation. By far the most bizarre remark in the episode is her saying that she "put him on a pedestal." Seriously, what the hell?

    I'd also note that the mother/sister seem equally distraught when Tatiana announces Casimiro's firing.

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  20. And the Kitchen Nightmare award for the most inept cook goes to...Casimiro! This guy deserves an award for holding onto a head cook job at an Italian restaurant without the ability to cook a meatball. That is *shocking*. How none of the sisters or mother tried the food is *mindboggling*. If it were to surfance that this entire series was a hoax, this episode would be my first thought. Arguably the most inept cooks & owners in the entire series. How did the sister/mother allow this train wreck to go on for so long? If you truly look at the facts, there was 1 single male figure in that entire place and it was a Hispanic unable to speak English trying to cook Italian food. How this guy pulled off this scam for 10 years is again, mindboggling. Only in California, I bet this restaurant was located in a busy location so it stayed afloat for as long as it did with unsuspecting victims strolling in. If this were on the East Coast, it would have been laughed at and closed quite quick. I will never forget this episode and the inept characters. When people complain of the American System being unfair (which is true to an extent) I think of instances like these. They bet their mortgages on Casimiro. You couldn't make this stuff up.

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