A Tribute to the Best Episode of Kitchen Nightmares Ever

By Noah Kaufman |

After 10 years, 12 seasons and two continents, Gordon Ramsay is giving his yelling voice a little bit of a rest. He announced via his website today that Kitchen Nightmares is coming to an end.

We’ve watched many episodes and certainly don’t want to provoke Gordon Ramsay, but the American series was a bit predictable. He showed up, discovered half the food was frozen and berated the owners a bit. By the end of the hour, everyone learned lessons and the restaurateurs transformed their businesses for the better. It’s a tale as old as time.

But for one shining moment last spring, chef Ramsay found a restaurant run by people who not only stood up to him, but also transcended the role of underwhelming reality TV villains and became genuinely compelling characters. Amy Bouzaglo and her husband, Samy, of Amy’s Baking Company in Scottsdale, Arizona, kicked people out of their restaurant for asking why a pizza hadn’t arrived after an hour. They threatened to arrest a man who wouldn’t pay for food he wasn’t served. As viewers, we actually believed Samy might off chef Ramsay on-screen and give him to Amy to bake into a slightly better-than-average Sweeney Todd–style pastry.

It was one of the most entertaining episodes of reality television since Puck put his fingers in the peanut butter on The Real World.

Even without Kitchen Nightmares, Gordon Ramsay will still preside over a substantial television empire with Hell’s Kitchen, MasterChef and MasterChef Junior, but we’re sure he’ll never make another episode as good as this one. 

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