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10 Best Kitchen Nightmare Episodes

Carlyn loves all types of cooking shows and even tries a few unique recipes of her own!


When it comes to television shows, few things can be more comical to watch than an episode of Kitchen Nightmares. These shows really shine a light on the incredible challenge of running a hospitality business. However, whilst the confrontations can often be extremely awkward, there is something that is quite easy to love about Kitchen Nightmares. Like any show, though, some episodes tend to stand out a bit more than others.

One of the main reasons people love this show comes from the drama. We see people who sell themselves as being so self-assured soon losing it with staff and the like. If you want to see how things can really go wrong in a kitchen environment, this show makes it easy to understand!

What, then, are the best Kitchen Nightmares episodes? What episodes show us things really going wrong in the heat and the chaos of the kitchen?

The Ten Best Kitchen Nightmares Episodes

So let's go ahead and breakdown the top ten in no particular order, let us know if there are some episodes that you think should be in this list in the comments section down below.

1. Hot Potato Café

To start off our list, we want to look at popular episode Hot Potato Café. This is a family-run business that has no idea of how to solve its troublesome present. The owners, three sisters, spend more time arguing and bickering than they do actually cooking!

Their only saving grace is a reliable head chef who wants out as soon as possible and has her eyes set on a much bigger career future, leaving the three sisters in total disarray.

2. La Gondola

As part of the third season, La Gondola is a famous Kitchen Nightmares episode for all of the wrong reasons. The Derby-based restaurant was once a beloved Midlands hot spot, but has fallen into total disrepair.

From the thin-skinned chef not liking anyone noting his menu is a few decades out of touch to using things like powdered minestrone, there are some absolutely incredible moments in this episode.

3. Bazzini Cafe

Oh man, Bazzini Café – one of the most ridiculous episodes in Kitchen Nightmares history. Paul Bazzini has moved up from top chef to owner, and is way over his head. As his wife foots the bill, Paul has meltdowns at everyone and anyway.

The real joy of this episode, though, is how some of the others involved – Sharyn especially – gets the sleeves rolled up and does exactly as Ramsey asks, helping to turn the place around in time.

4. Zeke’s

If you want to see a restaurant owner with delusions of grandeur, start here. Zeke’s is an episode of Kitchen Nightmares that fits the archetype: an ownership group that have no idea how to solve their issues. Yet they have precious little time or inclination to listen to advice.

Staff are abused, food is dreadful, and despite major budget cuts the place is running at a huge loss. Given the success to Zeke’s prior to purchase, it’s a fine example of management making problems for their own back.

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5. The Fish and Anchor

If you want to see how badly things can go on the British version of Kitchen Nightmares, this is the episode to watch. This family-run business is an absolute nightmare. Husband Mike seems to have precious little actual cooking experience, and wife Caron seems to be pretty out of touch with how to manage a business. This results in chaos, drama, and abuse from customers.

If the food isn’t bad enough, their constant arguing is!

6. Fiesta Sunrise

One of the most hilarious episodes of the show, by far, is Fiesta Sunrise. This episode involves family-run restaurant that is banked by the wife and daughter of husband Vic. Vic has a quirky management style to say the least, and spends more time clashing with his staff than he does actually getting anything of note done around the place.

From its awful décor to its overpowered booze to the naff food, this is an episode where we see Peak Ramsey as he tears trips off the chef.

7. The Runaway Girl

Based in Sheffield, The Runaway Girl is an infamous Kitchen Nightmares episode for all manner of reasons. The owner Justin has fallen out with the chef Richie, with Richie feeling like he was sold false pretences on how things would work within the restaurant.

After more than a few bits of bickering, we see Richie really get to let loose on his feelings of how the place is run to a pretty understanding Gordon. It’s great TV.

8. El Greco

This is an episode where you get to see Ramsey really go through the back-house of the place. In this, you see really frustrated service staff wondering how they can possibly turn things around. This is a good episode when you want to see Gordon basically lose it with the clueless back-end staff, and as he learns the true reality of how things work, he defends the staff in a way that only Ramsey truly can.

9. Amy’s Baking Company

For many people, this is one of the best Kitchen Nightmares episodes of all-time. It sees even Ramsey himself giving up. A married couple with absolute delusions of their quality get so uppity and so egotistical during the episode that the famous chef just gives up and walks away.

They literally get in touch with Ramsey to get him to prove to the world that their food is good – it is not. After watching the episode, you might be shocked to find that it shut down.

10. La Galleria

To finish off, we want to look at a vintage episode – La Galleria. This involves a family-run Italian business. Two sisters inherit the once-beloved restaurant, unable to follow the tradition and quality of the people who came before them.

One loves a drink whilst at work, and the other runs away from the slightest hint of a problem. Gordon Ramsey does his best to get things back on-track in a highly charged, emotional episode that is well worth watching.

What Is Your Favourite Episode?

With so many of the best Kitchen Nightmares episodes involving huge spats and drama, what is your favourite to watch? Do you like the episodes where they overcome the challenge? Or when it all falls apart?

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2021 Carlyn Hayes

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