Sandy, the owner of The Grapefruit Moon, is a single mother of three who has been struggling to keep things afloat. She s managed to keep her diner running for six years despite the neglect of much-needed repairs and renovations. Now her restaurant is falling apart. Restaurant Makeover's chef and designer have taken up the challenge to clean and rebuild the restaurant.This really does not do justice to the filth, drama and assholery that I saw last night.
The gist is this: the owner of Grapefruit Moon contacted Food Network to be on Restaurant Makeover. She contributed $15,000 to the makeover and Food Network matched it. A designer came in and redid the entire restaurant and a cook came in to revamp the menu. The restaurant was extremely dirty and the entire place was in disrepair. Now, when I say extremely dirty, I mean dozens of roaches scrurrying on the wall*. When I say disrepair, I mean holes in the floor and the ceiling and duct tape holding the counter together.
The owner and the "chef" (I use that term loosely; cracked out line cook is probably more accurate) threw major attitude throughout the entire show and were unhappy with the results. The designer and the cook were pissed and repeatedly used the phrase "wasting my time".
The show ended with a postscript stating that the owner of the restaurant sold the new chairs, painted the walls black and complained to the media:
"So I get a call from a producer asking if I planned on doing any renovations," says Sandy Moon, busy sliding breakfast quesadillas onto plates on a hectic Sunday afternoon at Grapefruit Moon, the cozy restaurant at Bathurst and Follis she's owned for more than six years. "I had considered it before but couldn't afford it." Moon relays her story with surprising calm for someone who agreed to let her restaurant be made over for reality TV, especially for someone who isn't thrilled with the results, which include some irreversible changes to the restaurant's former charm. But the floor was falling apart, and the restaurant was in "disrepair," and Moon thought it would be nice to have a new kitchen."I can kind of understand why she wouldn't be happy with the results. Beforehand the place looked more like a quirky working class neighborhood diner, and afterwards it looked much more yuppiefied and trendy. The color scheme was bright white and yellow, and I can't help but wonder if that was a deliberate "screw you" from the designer, who was appalled by the dirtiness of the restaurant. Indeed, one of the first things that the owner said upon seeing the renovation was "Oh, it's going to get so dirty!" and of course, she later painted the walls black. I can excuse crappy ambience or things being a little old or run-down, but the only proper thing to do when your dirtiness is exposed on national television is to hang your head in shame.
If she was unhappy with the design, she had every right to change it back, but kvetching to the local media about how Food Network screwed you out of some plants (see the article linked above) is not going to help your cause. Or is it? The episode postscript said that the restaurant has a packed house every night.
Ms. Moon, kvetching all the way to the bank
A quick Google search returns a couple of restaurant reviews and other people freaking out about last night's episode.
*If anyone has a roach screenshot from this episode, please send it over. That was seriously nasty.