24 Hours to Hell and Back - Catfish Cabin - CLOSED

24 Hours to Hell and Back Catfish Cabin

In this episode of 24 hours to Hell and Back, Chef Gordon Ramsey visits Catfish Cabin in Memphis, Tennessee.

Catfish Cabin is owned by Charles and managed by his daughter Rachel.

Rosie is the head cook and has been at the restaurant for more than 15 years.

It was opened in 1971 and was very popular until the 2008 recession.

At this time they started to lose money, losing between $50,000 to $80,000.

Rachel and Charles are both hard headed and find it hard communicating with each other.

As it stands he is not giving her enough power to run things at the restaurant.

Geraldine, the operations manager of more than 15 years listens to Charles and not to Rachel.

Gordon goes undercover as a construction worker with a group of four to the restaurant.

He notices that the decor is very outdated and there is a foul smell lingering in the dining room.

They are seated and order some popular Memphis meals and have to wait over half an hour for their orders.

When it arrives the food is disappointing and Gordon is not impressed.

The hush puppies are greasy, the catfish is soggy and slimy, the hamburger is undercooked and Gordon is done.

He makes his identity known to the restaurant and tells customers to stop eating while he calls all the staff out.

The restaurant is closed down and the customers and staff are taken to the Hell on Wheels truck.

Outside he will be showing them undercover footage taken of the restaurant.

The videos show dirt and grime underneath cooking equipment, cross contamination of raw fish and cooked food.

There is also vermin including live cockroaches and dead rodents.

Charles and the staff are surprised at what they are shown.

Rosie says she cleans but not under the fryers.

Geraldine says they are slacking but Gordon is not impressed.

Gordon invites the customers back in 24 hours for the relaunch while the counter is started.

Gordon gets the staff together without the owner so he can hear from them honestly.

Rachel says she has no authority and she is not listened to by Geraldine.

Geraldine cannot tell why the restaurant is not working as it should.

The all say they are divided especially the management.

Geraldine cannot tell Gordon the costs because she does not do the paperwork as Rachel does it.

Gordon lets his team in to start the renovations and the restaurant looks like it has never been renovated.

As they remove items from the restaurant, Rachel sees Florida, a server who has been at the restaurant since Rachel was a girl, crying and they comfort each other.

Gordon decides to inspect the walk in and it is in a bad state.

He finds ground beef going bad and catfish that has gone rancid.

There is a pool of grease in the grease trap and cockroaches running around behind the equipment.

Rosie is defensive once again and not able to tell him when last a deep clean was done.

Charles steps in to correct Gordon but he shushes him and he gets upset wanting to leave.

Gordon decides to end the renovations with Charles leaving.

Charles comes back and he listens to what Gordon has to say then they start deep cleaning the kitchen.

Gordon takes Rosie to the Hell on Wheels Truck Kitchen to show her the new menu and recipes.

Gordon takes her through making a catfish meal with fresh ingredients and Rosie cannot believe that it makes all the difference.

Gordon leaves her with his team to train on the remaining dishes.

Gordon goes to sit down with Rachel and Charles.

Rachel reiterates she wants to take full control but her father does not want to let go and Geraldine is a problem for her.

Geraldine is called in and they are shown footage of her taking money from the cash register.

She says that it is for business costs but there is no record of how much was taken or what it was spent on.

They are all speechless and Chares leaves Rachel to fire Geraldine for this betrayal of trust.

Rachel meets with staff to let them know Geraldine has been let go and assert her leadership and they are all happy for her.

A professional deep cleaning crew come in and there is years worth of caked grime under the fryers that has been removed.

Brand new fryers have been purchased by Gordon to be installed.

Back at the truck kitchen, Mary, Gordon’s assistant, says the kitchen staff are moving slow learning the new recipes.

After a while Gordon shows the cooks their new kitchen.

It is clean and with new equipment and tools.

Less than an hour from opening, the kitchen staff serve their meals to the staff to sample.

They love most of it until Gordon sees the chicken and it is raw in the middle.

Gordon reminds them to keep to the recipes.

The staff then go into the main restaurant and cannot believe the change.

It has been brightened up with modern new furnishings with a boat on the ceiling.

Just before the doors open, Charles hands over officially to Rachel in front of the staff.

They do last minute set ups till the countdown ends.

On relaunch, customers are let in and Rachel gets nervous so she is given words of encouragement.

Food quickly leaves the kitchen and they are enjoying it.

The fried chicken is undercooked and is sent back to the kitchen to be refired for the customers.

Soon Rosie is knocked off course and meals are delayed going out of the kitchen.

More chicken is found to be raw and is sent back into the kitchen again.

Rachel gets upset and goes into her office to cry.

After she pulls herself together, she comes and talks to the kitchen staff to slow down a little and make sure the food is cooked properly.

The refired chicken is better and the customer is happy once again and Rachel is more confident on the floor.

The kitchen team find their rhythm and the customers love the meals and all say they would come back.

Gordon says his goodbyes and he gets a big hug from Rosie.



What Happened Next at Catfish Cabin?

Three months later their sales have improved and the mac and cheese is a big seller.

Charles is grateful for their help and has retired to spend more time with his grandchildren.

Rachael is leading well as the Manager and has the respect of the staff.

The staff are more positive and communication has improved.

Yelp Reviews were very mixed after the show, negative comments focus on poor customer service and poor food items including the mac and cheese.

Catfish Cabin closed in October 2019.

They closed after the lease was taken over in August 2019 and the restaurant was gradually changed over by the new owner.

Owner Bevis Bell is the new owner and renamed the restaurant to Bell's Catfish and Soul Food in October 2019.

Catfish Cabin was aired on January 23 2019, the episode was filmed in November 2018 and is 24 Hours to Hell and Back season 2 episode 4.


Click for 24 Hours to Hell and Back

Previous episode - Vasi's Restaurant and Bar

Next episode - Stone's Throw

This post was last updated in May 2021.

3 comments:

  1. As filthy as that restaurant was, I have to ask: Does Memphis not have a health department? Apparently not. It makes me wary of eating in any mom and pop restaurant in the area without inspecting the kitchen myself first. It was disgusting.

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  2. I love how people always hate him at first and then when it's all over, they don't even want him to go.

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  3. I think my favorite part is when Ramsay is going over the new menu with Rosie and she starts off looking hostile at first, but after every item she gets less hostile until he tosses the green beans onto the onions and she's like, "Oh my God!"

    ReplyDelete

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