Thursday, October 24, 2013

'Restaurant Divided' Premiere Tonight - Mia Famiglia

Tonight at 10pm ET/PT on the Food Network is the series premiere of Restaurant Divided, which is hosted by Rocco DiSpirito.  Restaurant Divided is pretty much the same thing as a past show on the Food Network called 24 Hour Restaurant Battle.  However, Restaurant Divided is testing two different concepts of an existing, supposedly failing restaurant, where 24 Hour Restaurant Battle was more of a competition that tested two concepts of a dream restaurant and actually had a prize.

Below are the descriptions of Restaurant Divided and 24-Hour Restaurant Battle for reference.  The first is of Restaurant Divided:

"A family is torn apart by their failing restaurant — and their conflicting views about how to save it. Enter Rocco DiSpirito, who will try to save the restaurant by dividing the entire restaurant space in half and putting two concepts to the test. With his guidance, the families will open both restaurants for one night and compete, side-by-side, serving real customers. The concept that does best overall in profitability and customer reviews will be the one that unites the restaurant again, with all family members agreeing to work together on this brand new vision."

Here is the description of 24 Hour Restaurant Battle:
"Each episode, two teams of aspiring restaurateurs square off in an extremely intense competition to prove they have what it takes to open their own restaurant. The teams have just 24 Hours to conquer a concept, d├ęcor, and of course the food to turn a blank space into the restaurant of their dreams. Once the doors are open, actual diners will be served and a panel of restaurant experts will judge to see which team showed the most potential for running a successful restaurant. The winner will walk away with seed money to help them actualize their dream."

The episode tonight is at Mia Famiglia in Long Island City, NY, and judging by the reviews of the place, it is definitely not a 'failing' restaurant.  Every review site is filled with 5-star reviews, and on Tripadvisor, it is ranked #4 out of 206 restaurants in Long Island City.
The description of tonight's episode:
"Chef/Restaurateur Rocco DiSpirito steps in to help feuding siblings Larry and Laura resolve their conflicting ideas about how to save their struggling family restaurant, Mia Famiglia, opened in honor of their late father. Laura believes changing to a sports bar concept will bring in the customers, while Larry is certain that a steakhouse will save them. In order to reveal the future of the restaurant, Rocco divides the restaurant to open both concepts for one night. Based on his assessment of customer reactions and the financial viability of each concept, Rocco chooses only one restaurant to move forward, bringing this family together and giving them hope for the future."

If you are interested in knowing what concept won, their Twitter profile reveals it, so scroll down as it is a spoiler for some.

Their Twitter profile says Mia Famiglia is a "Steakhouse with Italian influence," so expect the steakhouse concept to win.


  1. Sorry, Rocco. You're cute, but you're no Scott Conant.

  2. Not good opening for the first of 6 episodes of 'Restaurant Divided': 694,000 viewers, 0.2 in demo 18-49, according to Futon Critic, even with a new episode of 'Chopped' preceding it and pulling over a million viewers. This is the lowest rated premiere of a new Food Network prime time show this year, worst than 'Giving You the Business' (832,000, 0.3) and 'Bubba-Q' (785,000, 0.3), and those shows aren't coming back. Let's see how RD does next week but, if it doesn't improve substantially, Rocco DiSpirito will add another unsuccessful show to a quite growing list (The Restaurant, Rocco's Dinner Party, Now Eat This!, etc...)

  3. Rocco DiSpirito helping feuding restaurant owners save their restaurants? Does anyone else see the problem with this? (think: "The Restaurant")

  4. Wow, thats pretty bad. Especially considering, according to TV by the numbers, Chopped at 9 had 1.043, Chopped at 11 had .817, and Chopped at midnight had .909.

  5. I watched this, and it was fairly dull.

  6. Didn't care for it. Knew what concept would win by description of restaurant. When Mama let sonny boy use signature cheesecake and then helped him, it confirmed the choice was set already.

  7. I was right. This is a knock-off of 24 Hour Restaurant Battle, right down to the title design. And I sincerely hope future participants are more likable than these. The brother relentlessly razzing his sister in the middle of service and the mother who said she refused to take sides but flagrantly favored the brother didn't impress me at all.

  8. I thought the show was great. The sibling rivalry was obviously playful banter between the brother and sister. They looked like they had a good time which was nice considering what they obviously have gone through. And as far as the 4-5 star reviews meaning they are not an actual failing restaurant....that's a pretty ignorant statement. Did you even pay attention to what you have jumped so fast to criticize? They are in the BASEMENT of a brand new hotel.....NO ONE OUTSIDE OF THE HOTEL THEY ARE LOCATED IN EVEN KNOWS THEY ARE THERE. They had to start over from scratch..... and it costs a lot of money to run a sure they are barely breaking even. (WHICH WOULD SUGGEST FAILING TO ME).The reviews say what was actually portrayed on the show...chef lauras food is delicious, and its all about family there and they will be back. I hope this show brings them the notariaty they deserve. Lmao at the cheesecake comment. Because do you HONESTLY think an italian mother would let her great grandmothers cheesecake recipe be served in a Mac & Cheese themed restaurant over a steakhouse??? To say that's how you knew Sonny Boy won.....ehhhh yeah....No. Nice try at the comedy though.