Wednesday, January 6, 2021

Restaurant Impossible - Don Luis Restaurant Update

Tonight on Restaurant: Impossible, Robert Irvine and his crew are in Billings, Montana to makeover Don Luis Restaurant.  Don Luis Restaurant is a Mexican restaurant owned by Carmen Salazar that is in trouble.  She is widowed and Robert needs to convince her to move past her grief and embrace the future to save the business and preserve her husband's legacy.  The restaurant is buried in debt and is supposedly two months away from closing.

As I normally do with Restaurant: Impossible episodes, I searched around the Internet to read stories, comments and reviews about Don Luis 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:
  • "Fresh new look and feel at this restaurant we've been coming to for 15 years. The flexible new menu (web site has not been updated) puts a new spin on old favorites and boasts some tasty new selections. We enjoyed the roasted corn on the cob - Elotes- as well as the old favorite: chips with salsa, queso and guacamole. My husband had fun creating his custom chimichanga which was carnitas served enchilada style and very tasty. The fish tacos were also delicious!"
  • "Our table was along the wall with a built in bench seat, it was very comfortable. The seafood enchiladas was the best we had ever eaten, with real crab! The service was excellent, we look forward to going back to Don Luis."
  • "We had a great experience here. Food was fantastic (Elote, Chimichanga enchilada style and nachos) and the waitress we had did such a great job. Btw, were Texan and I was worried about the Mexican food here."
  • "The service and food was so amazing. We both had the chimichanga enchilada. The best I ever had. It would be a huge plus to get chips and salsa while waiting."
  • "Magnificent Mexican Restaurant..the food is spectacular and the service is great!!!!!"
  • "Good place for delicious mexican food. I like it here always quality food & service. The service here is great. The bill was reasonable I would say. I can see why they have a lot of positive reviews"

Negative Reviews:
  • "The new menu is VERY small. No free chips and salsa. The food was mediocre at best. I realize the old menu was probably too extensive but I would like a few more options. My husband had encrusted fish that was okay but didn't resemble Mexican food. I had 2 tacos with shredded beef. The meat tasted like pot roast. I feel like Taco John's tacos would have tasted better. I preferred the old decor as well. The food used to be much better imo. Sorry, we won't be back unless things change"
  • "Food wasn't as good as it used to be. What happened? It used to be one one of favorite places for Mexican food."
  • "No chips and salsa! The menu was not even close to what is advertised. Food was ok not great"
*Reviews from Yelp, Tripadvisor, Google

Other News and Links:
  • The Restaurant Impossible makeover happened in September 2020.
  • Here is the Don Luis Restaurant website and Facebook page
  • The restaurant decided to close for the night the episode airs so they can all enjoy the episode together. (Link)
  • Right after the makeover, Don Luis Restaurant posted, "I want to thank, Robert Irvine and Restaurant Impossible. And I can’t leave out all the wonderful crew. That gave me a new outlook on my business, and also helped out my staff. Our our opening day will be Friday at 11 o’clock September 18th. We will be introducing our brand new menu. And we’re so excited for all of you to join us here at Don Luis restaurant."
  • Here is an interview with owner Carmen Salazar shortly after the makeover.  She said the show called her and she plans to stick with the changes such as trimming down the menu from 93 items down to one page.
  • In December 2020, Don Luis said they listened to customer feedback and added some items back to the menu. (Link)
  • Here are the reviews for Don Luis Restaurant from Yelp, Tripadvisor and Google.
  • Right now, this is the only new episode of Restaurant Impossible scheduled to air on Food Network with the remaining new episodes to be released on Discovery+. (Link)


The reviews for Don Luis Restaurant have been mostly positive with customers liking the new look, service and the food.  The few negative reviews complain about the smaller menu and the fact that there are no longer free chips and salsa.  Don Luis Restaurant has said they are happy with the makeover and they planned to stick to the advice of Robert Irvine.  They did keep the menu for a bit, but have added some items back to the menu due to customer feedback. 

*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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