Pastori's - Restaurant Impossible Update - Open or Closed?

Pastori's Restaurant Impossible

In this Restaurant Impossible episode, Robert Irvine visits Pastori's in Ellington, Connecticut.

Pastori's has been open for over 25 years after owner Bill Savvidis bought the restaurant when he was 19 years old.

He bought the restaurant for $600,000 using his own savings as a down payment and with a loan from his sister to cover the rest.

The first 15 years were excellent and they were only $30,000 away from owning the whole restaurant.

Ten years ago, Bills sister wanted out of the business and Bill was forced to borrow $300,000 in order to buy her out of the business.

They took out a mortgage against their house in order to be able to do this.

Bill went from owing just $30,000 to owing close to $300,000.

At around this time the economy took a hit and the customers numbers declined dramatically, leading to them losing $8000 a month.

The restaurant operates as a family business and members of the family work at the restaurant including Bill’s son Steve.

Steve has been working there since he was 16 and has been fired many times after disagreements.

They argue constantly as they have different, clashing personalities and they just don’t get along.

After being fired once again, Steve decided to work at another restaurant but Bill wants him to come back.

They are losing money every day and are just three to six months away from shutting for good.

Robert arrives at the restaurant and the first thing he notices is the disgusting smell that is believed to be coming from the carpet.

Robert meets with the owners to discuss the restaurant.

They tell him that there were $30,000 away from owning the restaurant but they are now back in even more debt.

Bills is currently cooking in the kitchen and Georgia is running the front of house.

Georgia has issues with the food quality and communication between herself and Bill.

There are issues when there are problems with the food and Bill doesn’t want to know as he says he is exhausted.

Bill has four children and his daughter and son will help out in the restaurant occasionally.

His son Steve used to work there but was fired on several occasions and has not returned.

Bill tells Robert that he was a good kitchen manager and was able to cook well.

Bill shows him around the restaurant and Robert notices that the decor is old, tired and looks miserable.

Robert asks to see a service so that he can see the issues with the restaurant.

The front of house staff are overwhelmed by the large menu and the kitchen is unable to cope with cooking it.

When the food is cooked it sits in the window getting cold, is returned to the kitchen and food is comped as a result, losing them money and customers.

Robert thinks that this is the worst service he has ever seen so far on the show.

Bill gets upset and is embarrassed about the service and leaves the service to take a breather as he is overwhelmed.

Georgia has asked Robert to try and get Steve back to the restaurant so he arranges a meeting with Steve.

Steve says he didn’t want to work at the restaurant anymore because his dad is too stubborn.

He doesn’t listen to him when he tries to tell him suggestions to make the restaurant better.

Robert can see that Steve would be an asset to the restaurant and can see that he hopes to return to the restaurant.

He wants to resolve the issues between father and son but that isn’t the only family issue a the restaurant.

Lambrini, Georgia’s daughter also works at the restaurant and she arrives late and gives Robert sass.

Robert tells Georgia that she needs to draw the line between being a mother and being a boss.

In the kitchen, Robert finds a crust on the tomato sauce and the Chef admits that it has been there for days, potentially breeding salmonella.

He refuses to eat anything until the food safety issues are tackled.

Robert asks to meet the staff and discuss the plans that he has for turning the restaurant around.

He next meets with designer Krista and the rest of the design team to discuss plans for the transformation.

The staff help the design team to remove everything from the dining room so they are able to get started.

Roberts first task is to work on the menu, the menu currently has 400 items on it and it needs to be reduced significantly.

The menu is costing them money as they have to stock all of the ingredients for the dishes, whether they sell them or not.

Robert would rather have a small menu of five outstanding dishes than struggle with a larger menu.

He asks them to pick just five dishes that are the restaurants best selling dishes and these will be added to the new menu.

Robert gives Steve a challenge to impress him in the kitchen and he is given 30 minutes to prepare a dish to impress him.

Whilst he is cooking Robert checks in with the design team and he tells them he wants them to go further with the design.

Back in the kitchen Robert thinks Steve has the skills but he needs more practice as his dish needs more seasoning.

He thinks with more practice and knowledge he would be a great chef as he has the talent and drive to succeed.

The next day, Robert checks in with the design team and is pleased that they have made progress over night.

A big issue that Robert has to tackle are the food safety issues.

Robert trains the kitchen staff in basic food safety skills including temperature requirements and safe storage of food.

Another worry for Robert is whether Bill and Steve can really work together without falling out.

He tells them that they need to put the past and previous issues behind them and move forward with a fresh start.

They have a mini cook off competition that Bill ends up winning.

For marketing, Robert wants them to take meatballs to the city hall to promote the restaurant.

The staff give out free coupons for a free side dish and the mayor promises to attend for the relaunch.

The transformed restaurant is revealed to the owners and they love the new changes.

On relaunch night, the customers love the new decor and the new simple menu.

The kitchen is running smoothly and the customers love the new food.

The staff and family are invigorated by the busy restaurant and have a new passion for it.

What Happened Next at Pastori's?

They kept most of the new menu but bought back some old dishes.

Yelp reviews are mixed after Robert's makeover of the restaurant.

The negative comments seem to centre on the food as the reviews are often positive about the service.

Pastori's closed on 8th June 2014, posting the below on Facebook -

"Today, after 28 years, we CLOSED our doors. Thank you to all our loyal customers and our amazing staff over the years. We wish the new owners much success. The Savvidis Family."

The Hidden Still restaurant opened in it's place in August 2015 and reviews are mostly good.

Pastori's was Restaurant Impossible season 2 episode 6 and aired on August 24 2011.

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