Kitchen Nightmares: La Frite

Gordon hits Ventura Blvd to take on La Frite, a french restaurant in the Valley.  38 years after La Frite was opened,
the owner is now trying to pass it on to his kids who get along as well as me and big words.  From what we learn
at the beginning, the son feels like he should be sitting in the driver’s seat running the joint and the daughter has no business being there.  It seems pretty much nobody wants the daughter there.

Ramsey heads on in for lunch and immediately attacks the ancient dessert case that appears to be the same since Lucy and Desi ate there before the first episode of I Love Lucy.  This includes the deserts inside the case as well.  Gordon starts off
with the La Frite salad, which is enormous.  What cracks me up about every one of these episodes is the chef always says the same thing.  Martin the head chef says it best, “I tink he will love da food here.  My food is good.”

Well Martin, and any other chef on Kitchen nightmares, prepare to have your little chef dreams crushed.  Ramsey has not liked the food EVER.  The trend continues with a bland La Frite salad, a seafood crepe that looks like an angry pot
pie, and Quiche Loraine that was not microwaved, says Head chef Martin.  Oh wait, strike that.  He just changed his mind.
It was microwaved.  Somewhere in placing the Quiche in the microwave Martin was confused and first stated that he did not microwave it when he actually did.  Um?  Sorry Martin, in this country when you put it in the microwave that does mean you microwaved it.

Chef Gordon goes back to speak with Martin and drags out the microwave issues along with Martin’s hatred for the sister and the uncaring owners.  He feels beaten down, betrayed, overwhelmed, over-worked, under-paid, and under-appreciated.  Gordon fixes all his issues with one sentence. “Well lets see how you do at dinner service.”

The first dinner service rolls around.  Alex casually comes in to say Dad’s at a hockey game and I hate my sister and despise her existence on this earth. When asked what was wrong with the place, Alex says nothing. Well, except he’d change the bathrooms. Um?

Day one service starts.  The joint is packed and the nightmare begins.  Martin starts us off right by placing meat on the grill with no seasoning.  Gordon asks if he plans to season it.  Martins reply? “It’s pre-seasoned.”
Gordon comes back, “There’s nothing on it.”
Martin replies, “That’s cause I’m gonna do it now”.
Now again maybe it’s that whole wacky English thing getting in the way, but doesn’t pre-season mean seasoning beforehand? Hang in there Martin.  Everything is going to be okay.

Celine tries to talk to Martin, but Martin wants nothing to do with her.  He will talk to everyone else but her.  Alex is ignoring everyone.  Gordon is about to regulate.  Alex’s attitude sends Celine to the parking lot.  Alex feels the 10 tops they push in a night is okay and business is great.  Does he look at the bottom line or taste the food?  Maybe Martin knows.

Alex thinks Gordon is ruining the restaurant.  Meanwhile the place is packed.  Just hearing Gordon is somewhere brings so many people and it will continue for months.  We at EMC experienced the magic of Gordon for Mama Ritas…………..

Gordon asks Celine to call Andre, who’s at a hockey game.  Celine calls and Andre finally shows up. Gordon lays in to him
about Alex and then begs Andre for help and lets him know he has to be more involved.

The next day begins Dr. Gordon’s family therapy session.  He records his conversation with Celine so her dad can hear it.  They go through Celine’s relationship status. Then Alex comes in. Both siblings break down and their father hears it all.  If I had tear ducts and a soul I might have cried too.  But as usual, Dr. Gordon got the family back on track.

Gordon’s remodel begins and the first thing to go is the ancient desert case, and in its place he adds a crepe station.

Night two begins. Alex is front of the house at the new crepe station.  Much to Martin’s happiness, he’s working with
Celine in the back of the house.  Martin starts off fantastically by killing two omelets and butchering the first 8 table’s dinners
Martin continues to ignore Celine, but Alex is actually starting to excel by the end of the night.

In fact, the night ends with only one glaring problem. Sorry Martin.

The reopening is upon us.  Gordon’s team remodels the joint and it looks great. Bright and spacious and modern. The menu is given a modern update as well and now looks more like a french bistro.  Along with the menu, Chef Ramsey also brings in a great Chef who really knows his stuff.

Relaunch begins.  Chef Martin is nervous.  After 20 years of cooking crappy food can he cook a new menu?

The answer so far is no.  Martin is still ignoring Celine.  Celine is crying and Alex is pissed. Not a great start.
Why Martin is still there, nobody knows.  People begin to walk out and Gordon rallies the troops.  Celine asks Ramsey’s chef to step in and take over. Once Chef Chuy took over it was on like donkey Kong.  By the way Chef Chuy is an awesome name.

Relaunch was a success and it was obvious that the end of Head Chef Martin was needed.  Martin is out and Chuy is in.
With La Frite now on the right track, Gordon could safely walk away.

I want to hear from anyone who has been to La Frite before and after Gordon. So let us know!

1 Comment

Filed under Everywhere, Los Angeles Area, On TV

One response to “Kitchen Nightmares: La Frite

  1. Cristie

    Gordon actually liked the food at Cheris soul food shack. I think that was the only place he ever actually loved the food

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