Thursday, October 22, 2015

Restaurant Impossible - Theresa's Restaurant Update

Photo - Food Network
Tonight on the season 12 premiere of Restaurant: Impossible, Robert Irvine and his crew are in Bradenton, Florida to makeover Theresa's Restaurant.  This season of Restaurant Impossible has an ambush theme, and Robert ambushes the owner Jodi after her friend and banker put out a call for help.  Robert finds that Jodi is micromanaging her business and while there, the kitchen staff threatens to walk out. 

As I normally do with Restaurant: Impossible episodes, I searched around the Internet to read stories, comments and reviews about Theresa's Restaurant to get an idea of how the restaurant is doing since Robert Irvine visited, and here is what I found (note - all reviews are post Restaurant: Impossible):



Positive Reviews:
  • "We have lived in Bradenton for 15 years and have driven by Theresa's hundreds of times and this is our first time eating here. The entire restaurant is decorated in such a charming way with a hint of Florida. The staff is friendly and the owner is accommodating and very proud of her establishment. Finally, the food was DELICIOUS!!! I don't know what took us so long to try this restaurant but it's now one of our regular places!! "
  • "This place is for breakfast and lunch only. Open until 2pm.... Make sure you order a side because it comes with none. Food was good but nothing you couldn't make at home. The inside of the restaurant is beautiful and the owner was very pleasant. Overall a nice place to visit."
  • "I love going to Theresa's. Jodi, the current owner, is such a delightful manager and hard worker...The food is wonderful. I love to go there myself and enjoy taking family and friends too. What a wonderful addition to Bradenton!"
  • "On to the food. Corned beef hash is tasty but portion should be larger. (Reason for 4 stars instead of five) I leave a little hungry even with a side of toast...Other food items look good at other tables and have considered the omelette but I am a corned beef hash guy. Service is top notch and owner is very friendly. Hopefully this makeover lasts."
  • "Great little restaurant in downtown Area, awesome outdoor shade area, and very clean interior roomy area as well.  Super attentive service and importantly very good food!"
  • "From the older reviews I've read, Theresa's seems to have benefitted greatly from its recent Restaurant Impossible makeover. The Crab Benny I had was very good, and everyone else in my party of 9 was quite happy with their meals as well, although the fish n chips was a bit oily. Service is friendly, although maybe a tad slow. But I thought the place was very good, and I'd definitely return."

Negative Reviews:
  • "First...The food was good. Nothing special, but I would eat it again, however I won't be back there...Our server seemed like a fish out of water. It was hot as blue blazes in there. I was sweating the whole time. The atmosphere was just awkward. There was no background music or anything. You could hear everyone's conversations around you....very awkward. The owner is so LOUD. She runs around the whole time talking to table from across the room."
  • "We hadn't been in a while and wanted to see the changes since Restaurant Impossible. The decor was nicely updated and the food has always been pretty good. We haven't seen the show since it comes out in the fall, but I'm guessing it was about difficulty of working with the owner. She controls everything and does it loudly and bossily. She ruined a good brunch."
  • "The appearance has improved greatly since the television show makeover that they received.  However, food is over cooked.  Additionally, the one major issue that I have is with prices.  The menus are outdated and do not have the correct prices and there is a handwritten sign on the door that said "due to the economy some prices may be higher."  Ordering food and not knowing what the final price is going to be is very interesting.  Additionally the service is not very friendly, as with other posts, it appears that the only person allowed to take orders is the owner and the staff does not get involved.  Generally, it was not a pleasant experience and I will not go there again."

*Reviews from Yelp, Tripadvisor

Other News and Links:
  • The Restaurant Impossible makeover happened in July 2015
  • Theresa's does not have a website or Facebook page, but here is a menu from allmenus.com.  Not sure how old or up-to-date this is.
  • Despite the restaurant only being open for breakfast and lunch, during the Restaurant Impossible reveal, meals were served at dinner time. (Link)
  • In a recent local article, Jodi said she was able to keep her menu because the food was good, and said they were "the first restaurant in history that has been allowed to keep the menu."  I'm not so sure about that claim.
    • Also in that article, Jodi said that since the makeover, she has been "overwhelmed by the community support coming from all directions," and that there is a sold-out watch party for the episode tonight.
    • Finally, that article states that in November, the restaurant is going to start opening for dinner on Friday and Saturday nights with live entertainment.  It may be useful to get a website or Facebook Page set up for changes such as this.

Read more here: http://www.bradenton.com/entertainment/restaurants/article40760193.html#storylink=cpy

Conclusion:

The reviews for Theresa's Restaurant since the Restaurant Impossible makeover are mostly positive and have definitely improved from the past.  People seem to like the food, decor, and service, but they seem mixed on liking owner Jodi vs. not liking Jodi.

With the exposure of a national television show, the restaurant may want to get a Facebook page or website set up to help keep potential customers informed of their menu/hours.  The restaurant will start opening on Friday and Saturday nights for dinner with live entertainment.

UPDATE - Theresa's was shut down by the health department at the end of March 2016 for multiple violations such as cockroaches, but reopened in the beginning of April (Link).

*Visit Our Restaurant Impossible Update Page to see all Restaurant: Impossible updates, and which restaurants are open, closed, or have been sold. Also Like Us on Facebook and Follow Us on Twitter

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