Kitchen Nightmares (US) Season 1 Episode 2 – Dillon’s Lounge

Kitchen Nightmares (US) S01E02 - Dillon’s Lounge - CLOSED

UPDATED : 26 December 2019

In probably his hardest challenge, Gordon Ramsay tries to save an Indian restaurant in New York, which happens to be in the vicinity of Gordon’s own restaurant. This week Gordon takes up the challenge to fix Dillon’s Lounge, an American-Irish restaurant with an Indian twist. The Owner of restaurant Mohammed, surprisingly, has three managers to manage a deserted place. Martin handles position of General Manager, Operations portfolio is handled by Andrew and there is a floor manager Khan. The menu at Dillon’s (Yelp profile) is a huge collection of everything on it.

One year after the relaunch, Gordon revisited Dillon’s Restaurant & Lounge, New York. Here is the direct link : Gordon revisits Dillon's.

As Gordon familiarizes himself with the staff and owner, he notices that place is infested with flies. During initial introduction round, Manager Martin shares his view of umbrella menu with most dishes in the offering, Andrew the operations manager who looks after the day to day operations sometimes cook western dishes as regular cooks are Asian and are unaware of cuisine. Apart from being a need-based cook, Andrew also helps in fixing things here and there in Kitchen and in the dining hall. Khan, the floor manager does not like working at Dillon’s Lounge and he makes it clear in the introduction part.

Episode Related Info:

Kitchen Nightmares (US) Season 1 Episode 2
Restaurant Name: Dillon’s Lounge, Midtown West, New York
Filming: March 2007
Air Date: 26 September 2007
Restaurant Close Date: Year 2009
Current Status: CLOSED

Is Purnima restaurant/ Dillon’s lounge closed?

Yes, It got closed in 2009. Purnima has since become Characters Bar and Lounge. It has mostly positive reviews on Yelp at time of reporting. Andrew, the other manager is now a blogger, HuffPost writer and is also involved with Chef Vikas as a cookbook writer.

Menu Sampling:

Gordon sat down for tasting the food, he orders assorted vegetarian appetizers, Beef Bhuna with Lamb Biryani and Salmon Noicoise. To his disbelief, Gordon finds meat in vegetarian appetizers and asks Jenna (the server) to take the dish back and tell the chef about meat in the vegetarian dish and rotten tomato garnish over it. When he tries Beef Bhuna, he realizes that it is not beef, upon checking that dish had lamb instead of beef. Finally, in the last dish he tries, he finds dried salmon with stale and hard potatoes. He asks Andrew to eat the final dish.

Dillons Lounge New York

During dinner service, Gordon sees a chef putting a huge tub of chicken on the floor, customers are divided over food menu. The kitchen gets backed up, even after an hour into service, food is not leaving the kitchen. Gordon calls for Martin to explain the whole disoriented setup. In a heated argument with Martin, Gordon calls him fake and accuses him of taking advantage of restaurant owner Mohammed by shunning his work and taking the salary. It is a disaster service, as customers keep waiting for food and are not amused by food quality and fly in the dining area.

Gordon comes early next day for Kitchen inspection. He discovers moldy meat, rotten food and vegetables, and cockroaches all over the place. When he checks the basement, all food is lying around unsupervised, there are cockroaches all over the place and the whole area is covered with rat droppings. He sees a half cut tomato, which is rotten while other half is used as a garnish in food earlier. Gordon is not amused as he had food from the restaurant but when he sees the source of all food (the basement store), he is very angry.

Gordon arranges for getting the place cleaned, he calls for exterminators and when that happens he takes the owner and managers to his restaurant so that they can see the level of care that is needed in the kitchen. After returning to Dillon’s lounge, Gordon shares new food menu with the whole team and introduces renowned chef Vikas Khanna (Vikas Khanna Profile - Link in resources) to help them get back on track.

Overnight the restaurant gets a much-needed makeover, a new identity is created and all sign boards are aligned with the new name. The restaurant is now ‘Purnima’ with straightforward Indian cuisine and manageable offerings. Gordon has word with the team and they all go out for a promotional outing for the relaunch.

 

Relaunch:

On relaunch night, Vikas leads the kitchen, Martin is supposed to manage the overall relaunch and Gordon oversees the process. Vikas starts strong initially but soon customers start complaining about the cold food. Food sits on wait for long before making way to dining room, which Martin had to manage. Gordon and Martin again have a rough conversation but Martin makes no effort to improve the service. Gordon asks Khan to step up and take the managerial role. Food starts to go out quickly and customers start getting the ordered food. Customers are now happy with timely serving and good taste.

Purnima Restaurant New York

Gordon advice owner Mohammed to try to retain Vikas as the chef. Gordon also suggests Mohammed to look into removing the non-performing people. Before the episode ends, Martin and Ramsay again lock horn as Martin confronts Gordon about the remark he made about him. He says - He is not sorry or guilty for the work he has done in the restaurant and he is not taking advantage of the owner.

 

What Happened Next?

During Gordon’s re-visit, restaurant looked in nice shape. Gordon finds the restaurant full of customers with most of them happy with the quality of food being served there. Kitchen and store area looked clean and organized and profits were up compared to the last visit. Mohammed has retained Vikas as restaurant chef and restaurant continues to do good in coming days.

Martin, the ex-manager, tried to sue Gordon and tried to prevent the episode being aired but the case was rejected in court.

However, Mohammed, the restaurant owner was unable to sustain the business for long-term, Purnima closed in 2009. The restaurant website stayed active until mid-2017. Vikas, the consultant chef started his own restaurant ‘Junoon’ on 2nd Dec 2010, in Manhattan, New York. Junoon has been awarded a Michelin star for 6 consecutive years since 2011. Website Gazettereviews.com named Vikas one of the top 10 chefs in the world recently.

Is Purnima restaurant/ Dillon’s lounge closed?

Yes, It got closed in 2009. Purnima has since become Characters Bar and Lounge (Link in the resources). It has mostly positive reviews on Yelp at time of reporting. Andrew, the other manager is now a blogger, HuffPost writer and is also involved with Chef Vikas as a cookbook writer.

 

Sources:

  1. Dillon's Restaurant and Lounge, New York - Yelp
  2. Purnima, New York - Yelp
  3. IMDB page for the episode
  4. Characters Bar and Grill, New York - Yelp
  5. Characters Bar and Grill, New York - Foursquare
  6. Chef Vikas Khanna Wiki
  7. Dillon’s Lounge revisited

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Episode Related Info:

Kitchen Nightmares (US) Season 1 Episode 2
Restaurant Name: Dillon’s Lounge, Midtown West, New York
Filming: March 2007
Air Date: 26 September 2007
Restaurant Close Date: Year 2009
Current Status: CLOSED

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