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Thread: “Meatballs, Mutiny and Mayhem” - The Restaurant recap 8/17

  1. #21
    FORT Newbie elf_girl's Avatar
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    Great recap! Couldn't believe what Pete said in his comedy routine. What an insensitive jerk. I have a hard time believing it was just the bad week he had. I think he may just be an unfunny comic.
    "But why is the RUM gone?"- Captain Jack Sparrow

  2. #22
    FORT Newbie StewartFip's Avatar
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    So I'm new to the group, but I'm seeking a haven to make emotional peace with this misrable television show I've become wrapped up in.

    Have I found it?

    The show, in general, infuriates me. I watch week to week only to see Rocco die more and more from the slow hemorraging that is his management style.

    Before I proceed with my grousing, I'd like to clear up the Ripert/Bourdain issue a bit more. Tony Bourdain is Executive Chef of Les Halles in New York City, a French Brasserie offering authentic French cuisine by people who really love the art of French cooking. Bourdain wrote two books recently, Kitchen Confidential and A Cook's Tour. The former recounts his experiences and influences in becoming a chef. It is not meant to resemble every chef's culinary upbrining, but it is his and it is a good read. The latter, A Cook's Tour, describes his journey in search of 'the perfect meal', and is a companion to the Food TV show of the same name. He admittedly sold his soul to Food TV to get the book written whereby they taped his experiences and made a series out of it. Bourdain is a blowhard, he's raw and in-your-face. He's not Emeril...he hates Emeril and if he had his way would never have been on Food TV. But to hear him shove a dish across a table at Rocco's and declare 'this blows...' is true Bourdain style and must be taken in context. You'd have to read his books to understand where he was coming from with that. For him to have even made an appearance in that joint was HUGELY surprising to me.

    Ripert is Chef of Le Bernardin, and is an individual Bourdain holds in high regard. Le Bernardin serves strictly seafood and is among the country's best restaurants. Bourdain used Ripert, et.al., as a decoy to get reservations to The French Laundry in Napa Valley at the end of A Cook's Tour.

    Ripert has a pedigree resume, Bourdain has media connections. That's why Rocco held these two in such high regard. If we had a transcript of their conversations before, during, and after dinner, and we could publish it...we could collectivley put Rocco's under for good. Are you with me or against me?

    So I hate this show. I hate the aspiring-actor wait staff, the half-assed executive chef, the cheap blatant advertising, the misery, the lack of attention to detail.

    Why do I keep watching?

    To see it FAIL. I want a neutron bomb to drop on the joint. I wish for termites to eat away at the stained wood exterior. I want to see it all on TV.

    So I have some reading to do here. I wanted to post this prior to understanding what precisely this group was about or what their disposition was about the show. We'll see if I've made friends or enemies.

  3. #23
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    [QUOTE=StewartFip]
    dud e i hear wat ur saying but why do u wanna take such drastic actions
    i might be interested
    need more details

  4. #24
    FORT Newbie StewartFip's Avatar
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    It's probably the Tony Bourdain in me talking, you'd have to read Kitchen Confidential to understand. I'm polarized now, so I'm reading more inspirational stuff by Michael Ruhlman to balance myself out.

    First off, the guy has a restaurant named after himself. Bad.

    Second, he's all about show. That talk between Bourdain and Ripert about how a Chef is a Server too? Taken literally, that contradicts what Bourdain says in his books. But what he was probably trying to say is that a cook makes food, but a chef projects himself through his food. Not on a television show, not by swarming his or her own dining room. I live in the Detroit suburbs. We have some fine restaurants, but NOTHING that would come close to what people in New York have. Roccos is a crumby, cliche restaurant. Check out the menu. What makes you want to go there. Now go to:

    http://www.le-bernardin.com/menu_tasting.html

    ...and tell me you wouldn't spend some time, save up your money, buy a nice suit, and take a similarly minded foodie-friend to EXPERIENCE that first tasting menu. Collectively you'd spend well over $500 for that meal. But you would never FORGET it. Because someone wants to provide you with an experience, someone cared, and someone in a kitchen prepared something that they were proud of. Not because hunger was gnawing at your belly and they wanted to feed it.

    The Restaurant is trying to convey Rocco's as the same kind of place. But it isn't. It's just fried food in paper baskets and a pimp for an owner/chef who is more interested in his face being seen than the love that supposedly goes into his food.

    All of you who think he's a 'hottie', fine. Go eat there, let him rub your little thighs, but for God's sake, don't buy any of that food. Eeeech. Save your money and go to KFC. Fried food. Paper baskets. Five bucks. And you'll probably see Gideon working there.

  5. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by StewartFip
    It's probably the Tony Bourdain in me talking, you'd have to read Kitchen Confidential to understand. I'm polarized now, so I'm reading more inspirational stuff by Michael Ruhlman to balance myself out.

    First off, the guy has a restaurant named after himself. Bad.

    Second, he's all about show. That talk between Bourdain and Ripert about how a Chef is a Server too? Taken literally, that contradicts what Bourdain says in his books. But what he was probably trying to say is that a cook makes food, but a chef projects himself through his food. Not on a television show, not by swarming his or her own dining room. I live in the Detroit suburbs. We have some fine restaurants, but NOTHING that would come close to what people in New York have. Roccos is a crumby, cliche restaurant. Check out the menu. What makes you want to go there. Now go to:

    http://www.le-bernardin.com/menu_tasting.html

    ...and tell me you wouldn't spend some time, save up your money, buy a nice suit, and take a similarly minded foodie-friend to EXPERIENCE that first tasting menu. Collectively you'd spend well over $500 for that meal. But you would never FORGET it. Because someone wants to provide you with an experience, someone cared, and someone in a kitchen prepared something that they were proud of. Not because hunger was gnawing at your belly and they wanted to feed it.

    The Restaurant is trying to convey Rocco's as the same kind of place. But it isn't. It's just fried food in paper baskets and a pimp for an owner/chef who is more interested in his face being seen than the love that supposedly goes into his food.

    All of you who think he's a 'hottie', fine. Go eat there, let him rub your little thighs, but for God's sake, don't buy any of that food. Eeeech. Save your money and go to KFC. Fried food. Paper baskets. Five bucks. And you'll probably see Gideon working there.

  6. #26
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    Who is Rocco Despair-ito?

    Quote Originally Posted by StewartFip

    Before I proceed with my grousing, I'd like to clear up the Ripert/Bourdain issue a bit more. Tony Bourdain is Executive Chef of Les Halles in New York City, a French Brasserie offering authentic French cuisine by people who really love the art of French cooking.

    Ripert is Chef of Le Bernardin, and is an individual Bourdain holds in high regard. Le Bernardin serves strictly seafood and is among the country's best restaurants. Bourdain used Ripert, et.al., as a decoy to get reservations to The French Laundry in Napa Valley at the end of A Cook's Tour.
    The length of your responses indicates, to a degree, the problem with media perceptions of chefs. In your original message, you wrote alot of about Bourdain, and little comparatively about Ripert. Bourdain is not in Ripert's league; he is alot like Rocco--all media hype and publicity. In fact, there are probably 10 or so chefs in the world in Ripert's league, eg. Gray Kuntz, J G Vongrichten, Charlie Trotter, David Bouley. Very few persons know who these chefs are, but in reality, while Rocco may be in the top 25 or 30 chefs in NYC, someone like Ripert is in the top 10 in the world; additionally, Ripert's restaurant was named "Best Restaurant in the United States" by the James Beard Foundation (the closest thing culinary arts comes to the "Oscars"). Media tends to distort reality. Rocco, Emeril, Bobby Flay...these guys are decent chefs, but they are not great chefs. They are GREAT promoters of their careers, and their connections with media editors and the help of publicists help create the image that they are great.

  7. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by StewartFip
    Bourdain is a blowhard, he's raw and in-your-face. He's not Emeril...he hates Emeril and if he had his way would never have been on Food TV. But to hear him shove a dish across a table at Rocco's and declare 'this blows...' is true Bourdain style and must be taken in context. You'd have to read his books to understand where he was coming from with that.
    To be fair to Bourdain, the food probably did blow. Nevertheless, he was very positive when talking about Roccos. This is the second episode that Ripert was in, which causes me to question why he goes there so often if he basically considers Rocco not to be a real chef, but a "prostitute". Ripert's difficulty with English, a'la Jacques Torres, may be the reason he is not like Rocco, or it could be that he really is above it.

  8. #28
    FORT Newbie StewartFip's Avatar
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    Sharon, you are so right. It was a point I wanted to make and failed to do so looking back. Bourdain, in his own admission, is nothing compared to Ripert. But the way Rocco said, and I'm paraphrasing, that "...two world-class chefs just entered the restaurant", that was a joke.

    If Emeril were to walk in there, he would have completely handled that situation differently...the whole show would have centered around Emeril. Kitchen tours, letting him run the grill, bam-ing left and right...a complete cirucs. But Ripert shows up? Nothing.

    Kind of makes my point. Good cooks are known thrugh their food. Since Rocco never even touches the food that is served in that joint, unless forced to, you can only imagine what kind of experience that must be.

    KFC.

  9. #29
    An innocent bystander nlmcp's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sharon Clark
    To be fair to Bourdain, the food probably did blow. Nevertheless, he was very positive when talking about Roccos. This is the second episode that Ripert was in, which causes me to question why he goes there so often if he basically considers Rocco not to be a real chef, but a "prostitute". Ripert's difficulty with English, a'la Jacques Torres, may be the reason he is not like Rocco, or it could be that he really is above it.
    Because even prostitutes have regular customers?
    I could go east, I could go west, it was all up to me to decide. Just then I saw a young hawk flyin' and my soul began to rise. ~Bob Seger

  10. #30
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    B Movie Actress?

    Ouch. Not very nice of you. Do I detect a bit of jealousy because Diana is a beautiful girl and a talented chef? Having worked close with the production of the show, I can tell you that she was hired more for her resume, on the strengths of her cooking talents - not her looks (which Im sure didnt hurt). Tim, Rory and Diana have worked in the top restaurants in NYC. I'm sure its very difficult to have worked in 4 star restaurants with top chefs and then have to come in every day and make meatballs. (no offense mama). Even worse, they were not paid for three weeks. I for one, do not blame them for quitting. Rocco was dishonest with them when he promised them a paycheck every week. Cooks dont make enough as it is.

    Interesting that they didnt show Rocco asking them to stay, and offering them better positions which they declined. He needed to save face on national tv by telling them never to darken his doorway.
    Interesting.......

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