Kitchen Nightmares Quickie: Sebastian's Pizza Chef Surfaces in Lancaster at Casa Roma
Honestly, watching the Fox version of Kitchen Nightmares is pretty joyless--Gordon Ramsay is far more palatable in his native UK--unless they happen to be featuring restaurants in Los Angeles.
In 2007 Ramsay went hothead-to-hothead with the owner of a (hideous) Toluca Lake eatery called Sebastian's, but despite a massive overhaul of their unwieldy menu, the place closed down out of the blue in January 2008.
Last night's season finale of KN found Ramsay revisiting three restaurants he tried to resurrect this season, including Casa Roma, an Italian pizza-centric joint up in Lancaster. In the kitchen, it wasn't rotting produce or the staff's rotten attitudes that had Ramsay cursing in disbelief, but rather who was in there.
"What in the hell are you doing in here?" he asked incredulously.
He was talking to a chef, who goes by the nickname "Q," last seen in the kitchen of Sebastian's, who now runs things behind the scenes at Casa Roma.
The owner explained that she'd seen the fateful Sebastian's episode, and one day Q came in, she recognized him, and hired him on.
Unfortunately Q offered not much more insight into what happened to the capricious Sebastian himself, a man Ramsay describes as "possibly one of the most difficult, arrogant jumped-up owners I've ever met in my entire life."
"One day, just outta nowhere, he kinda...disappeared," Q told Ramsay on camera.
Business is reportedly good for Casa Roma in Lancaster. Other local spots in the L.A. area KN has retooled include Sante La Brea in Los Angeles (still open), Sushi Ko in Thousand Oaks (closed), Lido's di Manhattan Beach (still open), Lela's in Pomona (closed) The Secret Garden in Moorpark (still open), and Mama Rita's in Nebury Park (still open).