Quelcuttis Tapas - Costa del Nightmares Update - Open or Closed?

Quelcuttis Tapas Kitchen Nightmares

In this Kitchen Nightmares episode, Gordon Ramsay visits Quelcuttis Tapas in Setla, Spain.

Quelcuttis Tapas is a tapas restaurant owned by the Quelcutti family.

They moved to Spain 10 years ago to retire and was drawn to the area as Dels father was Spanish.

As an investment they wanted to set up a business for the children to run and invested their retirement savings.

Joe runs the bar with Ruby and Terry cooks in the kitchen.

Terry is a self taught cook, who doesn’t cook to recipes and tries different dishes.

Del and Sue wanted it to be a restaurant but Joe and Terry want it to be a bar.

As a result the food has been neglected as they focussed on drinks sales.

One of the drinkers in the bar says that he doesn’t eat there as he doesn’t like the food.

The food is microwaved and is poor quality.

Joe shouts at customers and is rude to them.

Terry describes him as a loose cannon and reveals that him and Ruby have thought about sacking him.

The area has been hit hard by the recession and a quarter of the business have closed.

The business is losing £10,000 a month and the family haven't paid themselves a salary in a year.

They will close if they can’t save the restaurant over the summer season.

Del and Sue can no longer afford to keep the restaurant and pay their mortgage.

Gordon arrives in the town and is directed to the restaurant by a local.

He meets Del and Sue and they tell Gordon that the children are giving away free drinks.

They also lack responsibility and don't listen to them.

Gordon thinks it is more like a pub with idiot drinkers and notices they are doing a hypnotist themed evening.

Joe doesn’t know why people aren’t coming and he reveals that all of the children like to think they are in charge.

He also reveals that they drink heavily at the bar during the service and after the service.

Gordon wants to sample the food and tries to order a number of dishes that are unavailable.

He eventually orders swordfish, salad and chips and a chicken kiev from the menu.

He is given a pork on toast amuse bouche and finds the pork is dry, bland and greasy.

Terry can't find any kievs so Gordon orders a gourmet burger instead.

Terry disappears into the corner to get a burger bun from the freezer.

Gordon isn't impressed with the food and asks for a sick bag for his frozen burger.

He is served red win at £2.30 a glass and says the wine tastes like diesel.

Gordon looks through the fridge and finds some really old Serrano ham that smells like cheese.

There is also lots more old food in the fridge.

Gordon confronts them about their drinking and tells about returning to Spain to see him father.

He opens up about his father's death through alcoholism.

They throw away all the old food apart from some bacon that Joe says he will use to make a sandwich.

The next day Gordon questions their commitment to the restaurant and whether they really want his help.

They reflect and begin to realise they need to change.

Gordon visits a local market and arrives with bags of fresh food.

He wants to challenge them to cook with fresh food for 15 local ex pats.

Joe fails to impress at front of house and doesn’t know how to talk to the customers.

Terry struggles to get the food out of the kitchen as he isn’t used to cooking with fresh ingredients

He hasn’t prepared the squid and him and Joe moan about Gordon in the kitchen.

The customers are trying to give positive feedback and say that the food didn’t have enough oil or salt and Joe is rude to the customers.

Del and Sue are invited to the restaurant for lunch and are shouted at across the restaurant.

Joe runs about like a headless chicken and rants and shouts at customers.

He is rude to a table of regulars and Terry has to speak to them to cool the situation.

A customer finds a cockroach on the way to the toilet and points it out to Gordon.

Joe accuses it of being planted in the kitchen.

He fails to say who he thinks planted it and that sometimes there is dead cockroaches.

The customer also points out that the bathroom is flooded.

Back in the restaurant customer Keith is drunk and has been serving drinks behind the bar and on the terrace.

Gordon comes to the conclusion that Joe is the biggest problem in the restaurant.

He calls a family meeting but Joe is in denial and thinks the service was fairly successful.

Gordon tells him that it was a disaster with complaints from multiple customers.

He shouts at Joe to tell him he needs to change and that be managed rather than in charge.

Joe and Ruby get upset and break down in tears and Gordon asks to speak to Joe.

Joe knows he is messing up and Gordon gives him some hard truths.

After the talk Ruby comes in to comfort her brother and they tearfully talk to each other.

The family have written heartfelt letters to each other which are read out to each other.

It is very emotional with even Gordon getting emotional as they are read out to Del and Sue.

Gordon gives Terry a crash course in cooking tapas using fresh ingredients including a fish stew.

Gordon is surprised that Terry doesn’t invest more in the food culture of Spain as he speaks fluent Spanish.

The family sample the food and they enjoy it even though Joe doesn’t like fish.

Gordon asks Joe to match a drink to the dish as he thinks they can upsell on wine.

He struggles to find a pairing or describe the wine as he isn't familiar with wine.

He tastes the win, spits it out into the glass and then drinks it again.

Gordon takes them to a local Michelin star restaurant where they will work a lunch service to see how a proper restaurant works.

They change into formal dress and work in different areas of the restaurant.

Terry shines in the kitchen and is excited at learning how a kitchen works.

Joe bangs the food down on the table and is told to be more delicate with his service.

Gordon revamps the restaurant and removes the pool table.

He has added pictures of the family to add a personal touch to the dining room.

They are to relaunch that evening as a tapas restaurant with fresh tapas dishes and wine pairings.

For relaunch night, Sue is helping out for the evening and Joe pushes the wine to customers but is neglecting the food.

After 20 minutes he hasn't put any food orders through to the kitchen and is prompted by Sue to put through fish orders.

He over compensates by putting all of the orders in at once.

This leads to pressure on the kitchen and Terry begins to struggle.

With Gordon's pep talks he holds it together and delivers in the kitchen.

Gordon reveals that he has invited a special guest, the local Mayor.

Joe ignores him and has to be told to take his order.

The new customers love the new food especially the tapas and the wine that has a 50% markup.

One table of regulars aren't happy with the new higher drinks prices.

The drinks have only been increased by 15p and Joe manages to get them on side by explaining why the prices have gone up.

Overall, the relaunch was a success with 61 customers served and some dishes selling out.

What Happened Next at Quelcuttis Tapas?

Gordon returns a month later for a surprise visit, the restaurant is busy.

They are making money, paying themselves a wage and are no longer drinking in the restaurant.

Terry is enjoying cooking in the kitchen and they have added their own dishes to the menu.

Trip Advisor reviews after Gordon's visit appear to be very positive, with compliments on the friendly service, food and entertainment also offered.

Mark Haggan's comments on his visit are that

The food was excellent, and remarkably well priced. The staff were great, and could not have been more friendly or helpful. If you find yourself in the area, it’s certainly worth a visit."

Quelcuttis Tapas closed in August 2015.

Owner Joe blames the changes that Gordon made for the closure and reveals that his relationship with his brother Mark is at the worst it had been.

Quelcuttis Tapas aired on 14 October 2014, the episode was filmed in March 2014 and is Costa Del Nightmares episode 4.

Read About More Kitchen Nightmares

Previous episode - Quelcuttis

This post was last updated in March 2023.


  1. They blame Ramsey's changes as the cause for the closure, yet when he revisited the restaurant it appeared to be busy and the family confirmed that it was. Were they under the impression that serving the local fall down drunks was going to be good for the business or that the average person is going to want to come in with their family to eat with the local fall down drunks hanging out there.

    1. If they gotten rid of Joe, they would have made it I am sure.

    2. You'd be correct. He seemed like he thought he owned the business by himself and was using it to give his friends free drinks. The parents did a bad thing taking their kids there for their own dream and not letting the kids have their own dreams. The kids were free labour until they handed the place over to them and blamed them for not being able to run a business.


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