The Restaurant — Descends into total farce

For goodness sake!

I was genuinely annoyed by this programme this evening. Is it *really* supposed to be about choosing a team of people who can run a restaurant, or is it actually about presenting people with ridiculous tasks that even experienced restauranteurs wouldn’t be able to perform, just to make dramatic television and give idiots an opportunity to laugh at people who are doing their best to turn their lives around?

George–I know you’re not watching any more, so hang onto your seat. The two blokes who don’t even pretend to cook are now in the final, and the only team that consistently pleased customers–both with their food and their service–is now out.

And why were Steve and Rebecca kicked out this evening? Because the pressure of having to bake and present a cake in the shape of an aeroplane the week before last–at about 5 hours’ notice: WTF???–and of having to do a cookery presentation in front of an audience of about 100 guests this week proved too much for them. It ground them down. Yes–running a restaurant is a stressful job, but would any ordinary chef be expected to do either of those things at all, let alone with the notice that these people were given? Never in a million years!

What an absolute farce. Seeing the utter wreck that this evening’s ludicrous and completely irrelevant task reduced Steve to, I was absolutely disgusted with Raymond Blanc. He redeemed himself just a little bit, I thought, by going out after Steve and Rebecca had already been reduced to a laughing stock and persuading Steve to have a go. When they did have a go it seemed to me that they actually did better than the other teams. They were cooking, after all, and not simply blagging!

It shouldn’t have been necessary, though. I don’t know what RB and his partners thought they were testing with these trials, but it had absolutely nothing to do with the ability to cook appetising food and present it in a happy-making way to diners. Try nipping into the nice little bistro round the corner late tomorrow morning and telling the chef that you want a sophisticated cake in the shape of an aeroplane taking off for 12 people tomorrow night and he/she is likely to laugh in your face. Ask at a specialist bakery and give them a fortnight’s notice and you might get a bit further. And is that chef likely to agree to do a cookery demonstration at virtually a moment’s notice at a food fair, for a hundred members of the public? I don’t think so.

This really was ridiculous, and–IMO–bordering on cruel. Truly nasty television, and basically farcical. I’ll watch the final next week simply out of curiosity, now that I’ve watched the first 5 (or however many it was) episodes, but I don’t think I’ll be tuning in next time, if anyone’s daft enough to make a 4th series.



16 Responses to The Restaurant — Descends into total farce

  1. kseverny says:

    it is a rather stupid show isn’t it.
    And yes a chef would laugh

  2. Laura says:

    Thanks for the update! I’m really quite pleased I can’t watch it here!!

    • peewiglet says:

      Pity you can’t get the UK stuff over there. Having said that, I’m sure there’s plenty of other great stuff to do!

  3. alan.sloman says:

    I have to say that I did think it a little harsh that after agreeing to go and do the presentation Steve & Rebecca were then kicked out. They had had a very well attended ‘cookery school’ in the morning whereas the cocktail boys had no-one and didn’t even understand the booze element of their spiel.

    However, if I was going into busness with someone, I would want to know how they would deal with a stressful situation and so even if you don’t approve of RB’s method of finding out (I don’t either, btw) then you have to realise that it was important to the investors to know.

    It’s interesting that at last Nathan seems to be ‘getting it’. If the cocktail boys win the show it will be the death of the programme.

    • peewiglet says:

      However, if I was going into busness with someone, I would want to know how they would deal with a stressful situation

      Of course, but it needs to be a relevant stressful situation. They’ve had no problem dealing with the stress of presenting food in a restaurant, which is what it’s all supposed to be about. The tasks are ridiculous, and prove absolutely nothing about whether they have the ability to do what the show said it was looking for on the can. I think RB has made himself look like an idiot.

      It’s interesting that at last Nathan seems to be ‘getting it’. If the cocktail boys win the show it will be the death of the programme.

      I don’t think Nathan is ‘getting’ anything other than the fact that if he’s witnessed by the judges or on camera being lazy and rude then his team will be out. I’d have chucked them out on the spot if it had been up to me, when he responded to a request for help from one of the other teams with, “I don’t think so. I can’t be arsed.” And do you remember his response to the guests who complained about the glasses being dirty a few weeks ago? “Oh! Well I don’t suppose we’ll be seeing you again, then.” A bloke as ignorant as that is simply a liability.

  4. alan.sloman says:

    “They’ve had no problem dealing with the stress of presenting food in a restaurant”

    But didn’t Rebecca usually end up in tears over even minor things? The investors surely picked up on that and so gave them something they knew that would really test them. The fact that (eventually) they did okay and then they got pushed out to my mind meant that they had already been cast aside by the judges even before the test.

    I don’t like Nathan either. I think he’s untrustworthy. So that means that no-one should get a restaurant.

    The standard of the set of competitors this year has been very poor.

    Thinking about it though – if you could teach the cocktail kids to cook and tell the truth perhaps they could do okay? They have more Front than Blackpool.

    Ooh – I see you have edited your comment to be even nastier to poor little Nathan! (:))- How do you do that?

  5. Mango Terrier says:

    Mais, c’est vachement farci, bien sur?

  6. george says:

    I’m glad I missed this but I did get the gory details from SWMBO this morning.

    This show has gone downhill this season and I can’t see it coming back which will be a relief.

    Master Chef should be starting sometime in the new year; so something to look forward too 🙂

    Some bits I’ve picked on the web about the whole three series:-

    Blanc invested a six-figure sum of money into the programme, (series 1)

    The winners of series 1; quit after seven months.

    But it seems as series 2 winners; Michele and Russell are still going strong and have a blog of their experience of running a restaurant.

    • peewiglet says:

      Bring on Masterchef!

      Interesting blog from Michele and Russell, though it looks as though they didn’t open until the end of August (unless they just posted about it a bit late).

  7. Sal says:

    The cocktail boys have absolutely no respect for customers (they lie, blag and generally wing it) or – more importantly – for food. This is the exact opposite of everything Raymond Blanc claims he stands for. I hope they win. Then he’ll be saddled with them, and serve him right.

    Bonne chance Raymond! (laughs in a sneery way)

  8. george says:

    Hi Shirl

    back again! 🙂 As you know I didn’t watch the last two episode as I thought it was a disgrace. But the final episode was last night; don’t know whether you watched it, but if you did you’ll know who the winners are, and will probably be interested in this.

    Don’t read it if you haven’t watched the last episode; (don’t want to spoil it for you) or like me don’t care 🙂

    Raymonds Blog

    hope the link works.


    • peewiglet says:

      Hi George!

      I did watch, and was about to say something about it *g*

      I’d love to read Raymond’s comment but the link you included doesn’t work, for some reason. Have Googled but not found it. Can you please send the link again?

      Ta! ♥

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