Thursday, December 17, 2015

Restaurant Impossible - La Casa Bianca Update

Photo - Food Network
Tonight on  Restaurant: Impossible, Robert Irvine and his crew are in Whitehouse Station, New Jersey to makeover La Casa Bianca.  In this ambush episode, the owner Paul's daughter reached out to Restaurant Impossible for help.  Paul's daughter Megan said the restaurant was struggling and her father was losing his passion for the business.  Robert needs to inspire Paul to regain his passion with hopes of turning the restaurant around.

As I normally do with Restaurant: Impossible episodes, I searched around the Internet to read stories, comments and reviews about La Casa Bianca 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've lived only 15 minutes from this place, but yet never tried the food here. We had a late lunch with the family. What a great experience. Food was fantastic, especially the calamari! Service was well paced. We'll definitely come back."
  • "This place is amazing. Good quality Italian food for a reasonable price. Perfect for a date night. Their pizza is great and their pasta is amazing. Sometimes they have chicken piccata as a special which is also fantastic. I recently moved away and can't wait to eat here when I'm home visiting!"
  • "La casa bianca's decor was recently refreshed. Nicely done though the chairs are a bit uncomfortable. Not sure what others changes were made as I visited for a holiday party of 25 people and our menu was fixed. But the food that was served was excellent. As always, you can't be in a rush, as food is freshly made upon placing order.  This is a BYOB restaurant which we always prefer!"

Negative Reviews:
  • "We live near La Casa Bianca and heard that it was recently on an episode of Restaurant Impossible. We decided to check it out, then watch the episode when it comes on next month...The smell of deep-fry grease was over-powering. It was early, about 4:30 on a Saturday afternoon. We were the only patrons in the place...The specials menu had no prices but the prices on the regular menu were shocking. We decided to stick it out and see if it was any good. Hubby ordered the pasta puttanesca and I got the wild mushroom pizza. The dining room looked as though it had been recently re-done and I assume this was done for the tv show. It looked nice. The chairs were metal and quite chilly. The room itself was cold and we ate wearing our coats. Hubby's dish came with a salad and they brought a salad for me, complimentary. Nice touch. There were 2 waiters shuffling in circles around the dining room but often failed to notice our empty water glasses. The one knowledgeable fellow made sure we got refills when he came by. The food, when it came, was only average. It could be a nice little local spot, but not at those prices. It certainly doesn't seem a destination place."
  • "Over rated - poor service and way overpriced. My husband's dish was inedible and my dish was average. The waitress was uninterested, at best. Sad, I had thought that the Food Network would have helped this place."
  • "Had a "Wild mushroom pizza" which I'd describe as a wild mushroom cardboard. Waitress looked sad, the other one did her best to make our dinner comfortable which I really appreciate however overall impression from this place is not very good. I think that prices are a bit too high for whatever they're offering and they should consider the change in the chef as well. Anyway, this is just my personal opinion based on 1 menu item which I had. Good luck !"
*Reviews from Yelp, Tripadvisor, Google 

Other News and Links:
  • The Restaurant Impossible makeover happened in October 2015.
  • Here is the La Casa Bianca website, which calls chef Paul a "local Food Network celebrity."  They also have the message, "La Casa Bianca is growing and will be featured on the Food Network. We're busy and WE'RE HIRING.  All Positions."
  • Here is the restaurant's Facebook Page, which doesn't post much and hasn't posted since May 2015.
  • The restaurant had pretty good reviews before the makeover as well with a 4-star (out of 5) average on Yelp.  There are a lot of 1-star reviews that got filtered though.


The reviews since the Restaurant Impossible makeover are mixed with mixed reviews about the food, service, and prices.  It seems like the restaurant is happy with the makeover with calling their chef a "Food Network celebrity."  Also, their website says they are busy and hiring for all positions, so perhaps business has picked up a bit.

UPDATE 6/2016 - It appears La Casa Bianca has closed sometime around March 2016 according to Yelp and Tripadvisor.  The restaurant space is currently up for lease.

*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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