Pazsaz Entertainment Network's 24 Hour Restaurant Battle Page.
Temperatures rise as teams of hopeful restaurateurs attempt to open their dream restaurants in Food Network's competition series, 24 Hour Restaurant Battle. Hosted by renowned chef, Scott Conant, owner of Scarpetta and Faustina at the Cooper Square Hotel, each one-hour episode features dueling teams who must conceive, plan, and open their own restaurants in 24 hours. On each team, one person handles front-of-house issues like decor, seating, and service while the other manages back-of-house matters like menu planning, shopping, and cooking. When the doors open, each restaurant serves a group of diners along with Scott and a rotating panel of judges. Based on the restaurant's concept, execution, and viability, the judges choose a winning team who receive $10,000.
In this episode, two different families battle each other. The first consists of Rachel and her mother Jane. Rachel owns a catering and private chef company and Jane works for her. Rachel has always dreamed of opening a restaurant, with her mother involved. The second family is made up of Mookie, a chef who owns a catering company, and his brother Saoul, who will handle the front of the house details despite having no restaurant experience at all. Mookie has also always dreamed of owning his own restaurant.
As the episode begins, the two teams walk into a giant empty space where they are greeted by series host and restaurateur Scott Conant. He explains that the space will be decided in half and that each team will open their restaurant on one side of the wall. They are each given a $4000 budget and just 24 hours. They must create the concept, plan the menu, design the space, and manage the staff they are given. Once the doors open, after the 24 hours are up, Scott will come back to eat along with three major players from the restaurant world, as well as the customers, all of whom will be judging them.
Mookie and Saoul decide their restaurant will be called Bistro Urbana and will serve progressive soul food. Rachel and Jane will call their D'Lish and serve a variety of small plates. As the competition begins, both teams start out by determining what their menus will be. The next step is to go to the dining area and decide on the decor. Both teams head off to the store to shop for supplies and tensions begin to arise between the members of the teams. Rachel and Jane spend $1800 of their $4000 budget just on the groceries, which does not leave a lot to use on the restaurant itself. The chef member of each team heads back to the restaurant to start on the cooking, while the other one begins on the actual restaurant design.
As Mookie unpacks his groceries he realizes he only has enough for 75 portions, but he is supposed to be able to feed 100 people. Scott walks in as he is worrying about the problem, who talks it through with him and helps him calm down a little. Rachel is having problems with her food and with her portions and Scott walks into her kitchen at the wrong moment, pointing out some issues she may have and she begins to stress. Rachel and Jane start to snap at each other.
The teams head off to a hotel to try and get some sleep, but Rachel is not able to sleep because she is worrying so much. When they arrive back at the restaurant the next day Rachel meets her sous chef and explains what she needs done. She has a large menu, involving a lot of small plates. As she is working, it occurs to Rachel that she cannot know how many plates of each food will be ordered. Meanwhile, Jane is trying to find a way to decorate the walls on practically no money as the $4000 is essentially gone.
Mookie meets his sous chef and explains the menu to him. While his dishes are ambitious, he has chosen to limit it to a manageable amount. He has adjusted the menu to the new dishes he invented to account for the inadequate amount of ingredients he bought. He has taken a few shortcuts on his desserts, using boxed brownie mix and premade pie crust, and he hopes the judges will be willing to overlook that. In the final hour before opening, tensions flair and Rachel begins to have a bit of a melt down. She does not like her sous chef and decides not to serve the bread pudding he made as she feels it is terrible.
Both of the spaces have been transformed into restaurants and each team is pleased with their results. The doors open and the diners wander in - most of them initially choosing D'Lish because of the decor. Then both restaurants get customers and the food starts to be served. Bistro Urbana has a small problem with people asking for hot sauces and seasonings for the food. On the other side, the customers get upset that the food is taking so long to be served and people begin to leave,
The judges walk into D'Lish and they like the look of the restaurant. The first course is served and the judges like the presentation, but they are not impressed with some of the food. The like the salad and entree courses much better with a few exceptions. The judges were not excited by the desserts.
The judges go into Bistro Urbana, where they like the way the space has been decorated and the artwork. They are impressed with Chef Mookie, but feel there is a disconnect between the front of the house and kitchen. They feel a few things are not great, but overall they like much of the menu. When they get to the dessert, the judges are not happy that none of the desserts were well-made.
In the end, the judges discuss both restaurants - from the menu and actual food to the decor - and then come to a decision. Of course, we're not telling you who won, and since it could have gone either way you'll just have to watch the episode to see who won and who will get to open their own restaurant.