Ramsay's Kitchen Nightmares - La Gondola - CLOSED

Kitchen Nightmares La Gondola

In this Kitchen Nightmares episode, Chef Gordon Ramsay visits La Gondola, Derby, UK.

Owner Daniella bought La Gondola after spending her 21st birthday and wedding at the restaurant.

Gordon eats a starter of Spaghetti bolognese which takes a long time to arrive, the portion is huge and the salmon main is huge also.

The Head Chef Steve Strorn has been there since 1975 and has not changed the menu.

Gordon watches a service, they serve customers a tin of tuna in place of a tuna steak and the mains are all served with sauce.

The vegetables are served silver service style and Steve has a tantrum shouting at both Stella and Daniella.

Gordon discovers bought in minestrone soup and apple pie and Daniella is horrified when she hears what is going on in the kitchen.

Gordon speaks to the customers who say they don't want it to change.

Second Chef Gareth tells Gordon they spend most the time watching the clock and he meets apprentice Danny.

Gordon calls a kitchen meeting to talk costs and discover that on some dishes they are losing money each time they serve it, the lamb dish is losing them £5 a time.

They visit Rolls Royce for a lesson in change and Gordon teaches them to cook fresh pasta for a 2 course pasta special.

The young chefs make salads and Gordon likes them.

Gordon calls in his PR manager to help with the relaunch and she sees the ballroom as an asset to the restaurant.

The pasta dishes are popular but the service is slow due to the kitchen and dining room being disorganised.

The orders get confused and tables get the wrong dishes or the same dishes twice.

Gordon asks Steve to prepare a dish only using fresh ingredients, he cooks a trout dish but forgets to take the scales off and Gordon thinks the dish is dismal.

The other chefs cook dishes, one has a nasty sauce on it and another has raw chicken.

They replace all the cutlery and plates and the plastic flowers are thrown away.

Martin demos the flamb├ęs and they decide to bring them back on the menu.

Danny is put in charge of the staff dinner. On the night of relaunch Steve appears stressed and bottles it at the last minute.

The relaunch was rocky but a success.

What Happened Next at La Gondola?

Gordon revisits and Steve and Gareth had left to work in a pub.

The owner had trialled a few head chefs before settling on Wayne and Danny as assistant chef.

Gordon likes Wayne's food and is glad Danny is more involved in the kitchen.

The Trip Advisor reviews after closure are mostly negative.

La Gondola closed to guests in 2007 and went into voluntary liquidation but the Hotel remained open for Wedding Receptions.

The hotel has since closed and remains abandoned as below. The website however appears to live on!

In 2012, planning permission was submitted to demolish part of the building and build an appartment block but this was refused by the local council.

Owner Daniella Bayfield sadly died in her sleep in July 2019.

The hotel was listed at auction in October 2020 but failed to sell at £709,000. The listing describes the hotel as beyond economic repair.

La Gondola aired on March 14 2006, the episode was filmed in July 2005 and is Ramsay's Kitchen Nightmares UK season 3 episode 4.

Read About More Kitchen Nightmares

Previous episode - Clubway 41

Next episode - La Parra de Burriana

This post was last updated in January 2020.

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  1. I wonder what happened to Danny.


  3. I gotta say that I wonder why Ramsey bothers. All these restaurants are weeks/months from closing when he shows up. If the restaurant closes immediately or even years after the show, some jackhole blames him instead of the already failing business.

    1. Here's the thing... Ramsey's not entirely blameless in the matter.
      Yes, he refits the joint, yes, he suggests a new menu- that's all great. But the show glorifies itself in showing how nasty/unsanitary the conditions are in the restaurant. And that kind of bad image that's now plastered all over the TV screen isn't something you can get rid of with new furniture. Sure, it's been refitted. Sure, it's got a new menu. But the same people run it. Personally, if I knew that before Ramsey came that the shop had been using food past expiration date for however many years that they've been there, I still wouldn't feel entirely great eating there even IF the place reopened.

    2. Unsanitary conditions can be reversed. Hell, one of the more popular (and highly rated) Mexican restaurants here used to be a strip club.

    3. Gordon Ramsay is a chef and a restauranteur . He is not a therapist or a relationship counselor. He is being forced into these situations by network and producers. Yes, he gives it his try and his best, but in the end, he's not qualified to change people. He can change the food and how the restaurant is ran, but in the end it's up to the people who work there.

      A common theme that I see in Kitchen Nightmares (especially in the US ones) are these egotistical owners/chefs/managers who think they're big shots and they're doing everything right and blame their own customers for their restaurant failing. They almost never work out. The ones who are sincere about changing are the ones that can turn it around for years to come.

      Unfortunately (at least in the US), the network only cares about ratings and not the restaurants. They cast these completely dysfunctional staff for their show. Hell, just look at Amy's Baking Company. The owners are filthy rich. They can run that thing until they die with no customers. They don't need help. They only wanted Ramsay there to tell Yelp that their food is good because of one negative feedback, not to change or critique them.

  4. It is sad to see the chef ramsey gets the blame for tanking restaraunts. I'm sure he gets plenty frustrated trying to pull their buns out of the fire only to see them go belly up. Most of these places go back to their old ways, and as far as I can tell none of you who blame ramsey never went to one of his restaraunt makeovers. Keep up the good work chef, there are many people who appreciate what you do.

  5. I also want to know what happened to Danny!

  6. I agree, it's not Gordons fault the places go back under. The same people running it, he fills the joint, teaches them the correct way to do it. Then leaves. Old habits come back. Usually once a place has been on tv, they get an increase in business because people see how well he made it when he left. The people in charge dropped the ball.

    1. Totally agree. Gordon isn't a magician. He gives them the tools to be successful but the owners drop the ball. On one of the episodes he suggests a chef's table and I think this is a wonderful idea. All restaurants should consider this idea because it'll showcase the kitchen and staff and the production of the food. This could aid with customers that think the restaurant is clean and the food is prepared properly.

  7. I still wonder what happened to the poor lovely lady that owns this place I look forward to seeing it open again such a shame

  8. Yeesh! Look at the web site for this place. It's like we stepped into the TARDIS and jumped back to 1996. How does that happen? DIY web design is now easier than ever.

  9. This early episode really shows how things have changed. Gordon's infinite patience with the obviously incompetent Steve would not (& should not) have occurred in later episodes. The entire episode, I just wanted to smack Steve around!

  10. This was probably one of the saddest episodes of KN ever shown. Between Steve's stubbornness and cowardice, and Daniela clearly buying the restaurant for the wrong reasons, it just felt bad when it was all over. It was no surprised that the place closed and was abandoned. If it was torn down, hopefully Daniela wasn't in the place in one of the bedrooms.

  11. Just found out that Martin appeared on The F Word Season 2 Episode 5. I wonder how he's doing now.

  12. Chef Steve was just full of bs and unjustified arrogance.

    The apprentice was the most promising staff member - glad Gordon saw his potential and took him under his wing a bit, giving him more responsibilities and instilling some confidence in him. I expect as soon as Gordon left Chef Steve will have instantly relegated him to being pot wash. Hope he went on to have a successful career though.

  13. All Ramsay can do is to put them on the right track and he does it very well. Staying on the track is up to the owner. If you jump track don't blame Ramsay.

  14. Amazing that the website also looks like it's from 1975.


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