Rossini's Cucina Italiana - Restaurant Impossible Update - Open or Closed?

Restaurant Impossible Rossini's Cucina Italiana

In this Restaurant Impossible episode, Robert Irvine visits Rossini's Cucina Italiana in Ridgeland, Mississippi.

Rossini's Cucina Italiana is owned by Lori.

She inherited it from her family and runs it with her husband Toni.

The restaurant is named after her grandmother.

He has a passion for cooking and works in the kitchen.

They bought the business from Lori’s father in 2000.

Things were great when they first took over and for the first 12 years.

However, now they are behind on bills, their credit cards are maxed out and they are on the edge of losing their house.

Toni gets frustrated in the restaurant and customers hear him lashing out.

Robert arrives and enters the restaurant.

He sees that there is a lot of unused space with tired booths and worn tables and floors.

The restaurant is not clean and he notices a lot of dirt and filth.

Robert finds evidence of Salmonella in different areas of the bar and there is also a dirty mini fridge.

He shuts down the bar immediately and calls for the owners.

Robert shows them all he has found so far and the cleanliness issues.

He inspects the kitchen and finds out that it has not been cleaned in 18 months.

Toni complains that he works too hard to worry about the small things like cleaning.

Toni is angered by the criticism and walks out of the restaurant, pulling his microphone off.

Robert sits with Lori and she explains Toni’s temperament, saying he is not always abrasive.

Toni eventually comes back on his own and he agrees with Robert.

Toni shares more of his experience and the couple say the failing restaurant is affecting their marriage.

Robert tells them they can only serve bottled water and no drinks from the bar during the service.

The service begins and staff are tense with Robert in the restaurant.

They make lots of mistakes and there are some breakages.

Robert quickly tells Toni that he is too loud.

He finds gunk in the ice machine that has been tuned off.

Robert finds a cockroach and several more cleanliness issues.

He insists that the service is shut down and no more food is served.

Toni has to send all the customers home and reveals his kitchen as the problem.

Toni seems to be upset at the state of the kitchen and bar and he accepts blame for it all.

Lori tries to comfort him but he is too embarrassed.

Robert steps in and tells Toni some hard truths.

He tells him that he needs to grow up as it is not just himself but his wife he has to consider.

Toni apologises to his wife, promising to be nicer and have a changed attitude.

Due to the state of the kitchen Robert won’t be tasting the food from the menu.

He brings in the design team of Taniya and Tom.

Robert them around the space and a curtain falls on them.

Volunteers and staff empty out the space and Toni and Lori are sad to see the space empty.

Robert sits with the servers to get more information about the restaurant and the owners.

They say they are disrespected by the owners.

It is both Toni and Lori being disrespectful and they also drink a lot on the job.

They stay because they feel like family but they prepare for the insults during each service.

The owners are invited to the meeting and they address the drinking.

They say that they are drinking to cope with the stress.

They also say the high turnover rate of staff is because of Toni.

Robert takes Toni on a walk to help him address his rage.

He needs to find a way to do better as it is directly affecting his business.

Robert arranges for Toni to cook a meal for his wife in the hopes to rekindle his passion for cooking.

Robert checks in on his design team, who share the plans they have for the restaurant.

Toni uses a nearby restaurant’s kitchen to cook the food.

Robert shows him how clean the kitchen is in the hopes of inspiring him in his own kitchen.

Toni cooks steaks for Lori and serves her a nice meal.

Lori is moved to tears and their wine bottle is emptied.

They drink water and talk.

Robert checks in on his design team and finds out that they are behind.

This is due to the size of the restaurant and a lot of work to be done on the floors and walls.

The next day, Robert arrives and checks in with the design team.

Some progress has been made with the walls but the floors are still being cleaned.

Robert has the owners address the staff apologising to them and promising a less toxic work environment.

The kitchen has been cleaned and looks much better.

Robert shows the owners how to make some dishes from their new menu.

With two hours left until the relaunch the team are still struggling and rushing to finish up.

They are behind schedule and Robert has to help them to finish.

An hour and a half after the planned relaunch time all the crew are still hard at work.

The final touches are done while the crew are rushed out.

Thirty minutes later, Toni and Lori are let in to see the space.

They are moved to tears looking at their newly revamped restaurant.

It is clean and modern looking and looks more like a high end restaurant.

Tom and Taniya are brought in to meet the couple.

Lori and Toni let in the customers in for the relaunch.

The customers all love the new space, the food and the ambience.

Toni cooks in the kitchen and works without raising his voice at the staff.

Lori is complimentary to her staff while instructing them in the front of house.

Toni is a changed man and is finally enjoying being in the kitchen.

What Happened Next at Rossini's Cucina Italiana?

A few months later, their sales have doubled since Roberts visit.

The bar and kitchen are being kept clean.

There is a strict no drinking policy and there is constant laughter from the kitchen.

Rossini's Cucina Italiana 2020 Revisited episode

In 2020, Robert Irvine revisited Rossini's Cucina Italiana.

He visited owner Lori back in 2019 for season 16.

Robert and his volunteers are traveling to restaurant to help after the close down due to COVID-19.

Robert helped their restaurant a year ago.

After Robert left, Rossini’s got a 35% increase in business.

However, once COVID hit, things went downhill hard.

After a month and a half, they had no income.

They still had to pay rent, utilities, taxes, etc and they couldn’t afford to pay it.

They have around six weeks left before they will have to close.

Robert has a list of the CDC guidelines for COVID-19.

Robert says that if they aren’t following the rules, then nobody will feel safe eating there.

Robert and his crew have been tested for COVID-19.

The restaurant is a lot cleaner than before.

They put have blue tape on tables that customers can’t sit at due to social distancing.

Robert says this restaurant is immaculate.

Lori says they didn’t realize how bad things were before Robert came.

Their house isn’t tied to their debt anymore.

They have paid off some of the credit cards after their income jumped 35% to 45%.

Covid-19 made things harder.

They did takeout for about a week and a half.

They don’t have a website as the guy who ran the website didn’t give them the passwords when he moved away.

The staff wears masks and gloves and disinfect tables a few times a shift.

They still have the reputation of being a dirty restaurant.

Robert talks to the producers about how to start a website for the restaurant.

Tony made a few dishes for Robert to try.

This is the first time he is trying Tony’s food since they shut down the kitchen last time.

Robert says that this is the best shrimp and grits he’s ever had in his life.

Robert tells Tony that he could bottle the sauce and sell it on its own.

The meat lasagna is off the charts.

Robert wants to add an industrial freezer in the kitchen.

Robert wants to turn the dishes into frozen dishes that can be sold as ready meals.

Robert gives Tony homework.

He wants him to go to the grocery store and see what already made meals people are buying.

Lori must come up with marketing ideas.

She came up with buy an appetizer and get a free glass of wine.

She has connections with a local radio station.

Tony noticed people went towards Mexican style lasagna.

He will meet with a friend about bottling his sauce.

Robert films an ad for the restaurant.

They will have a lasagna special and will change the theme for it every week.

They continue to create dishes for their new concept.

Robert shows them their new freezer and their new website.

Lori is crying because she is so happy that Robert was able to do this for them.

They are getting ready to open up the restaurant.

One server will be responsible for picking up dirty dishes and washing them.

They tell the customers about their Rossini’s at Home program.

He says that there is no way he can thank Robert enough for everything he has done for them.

Since Robert’s visit, Tony and Lori have been continually updating their new website.

The Rossini’s At Home To-Go Service has been booming and makes up around 40% of their business.

They are optimistic about the future.

Rossini's Cucina Italiana is closed.

They appear to have closed around March 2022.

The reviews were mixed.

Customers either loved or hated the food and some customers believes that they ruined the restaurant with the reduced menu and higher prices.

They slowly added old menus items back to the restaurant at the requesst of customers.

Rossini's Cucina Italiana was Restaurant Impossible season 16 episode 2 and aired on 2nd January 2020.

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