The Worst Kitchen Nightmares Dishes Ever Served

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Whether you love his passion and intensity, or can't stand the way he shouts blunt (and often times belittling) truths at nerve-wracked kitchen staff, there's no denying, Gordon Ramsay rumbles the food industry's Richter scale. He's earned coveted Michelin stars all over the world at his many restaurants, written a plethora of books for aspiring chefs and home cooks, and proved to television audiences everywhere when it comes to hard work and perfection in the kitchen, he doesn't mess around. In order to earn his respect you shut your mouth, listen carefully, and do whatever is asked of you correct the first time. Fall short of any of those rules and you'll find yourself on the receiving end of a dressing down potentially so brutal you'll hang up your apron and switch careers for good. 

Among his slew of popular television shows is Kitchen Nightmares, a program where the tough-as-nails chef ventures to struggling restaurants in an attempt to offer his sage (and aggressively unapologetic) advice to bring more customers through the doors. Many of the restaurant owners are stubborn and stuck in their own ways (which Ramsay tries to help them break like a culinary drill sergeant), and it often leads to tense verbal bouts. He tries the food, as well, and the dishes on this list stand out as the cream of the "crap."

Welcome to Ramsay-land, folks.

Chicken Milanese at Bazzini

Ridgewood, New Jersey, sees Chef Gordon Ramsay when one episode of Kitchen Nightmares pays a much-needed visit to Bazzini, a restaurant with an overwhelmed head chef and less-than-impressive decor to usher in guests. The restaurant's named after Paul Bazzini, the head honcho in the back. With the staff's motivation careening downhill, they bring in the talents of Ramsay to employ some serious butt-whooping to turn attitudes around. And, it all starts with the anxiety-inducing food tasting, of course.

Instead of choosing dishes that sound enticing to him, Ramsay asks for a variety to sample. Imagine Gordon Ramsay sitting alone in your dining room asking for what you believe are your stand-out entrees. You'd have to change into a new pair of underwear before you started cooking. When the Chicken Milanese arrives with an entree-sized portion of pesto fettuccine pasta, Ramsay comments that the sheer size of the cutlet reminds him of a "f***ing elephant's foot." As he suspects, it's charred to all hell and impossible to cut through or chew. Even the sound the knife makes while cracking through the cement-like exterior is off-putting. 

Let's keep Chicken Milanese looking more like chicken — and less like our massive friends who roam the African plains.

Scallops with Black Pudding Sauce at Bonapartes

When a restaurant claims a dish is their "signature," they better damn well make sure it's perfect all the time, especially when a food critic arrives armed to put them on blast for either a great meal, or a forgettable one. However, when a guy like Gordon Ramsay asks to try your signature dish for an episode of Kitchen Nightmares, it better be more than perfect. Unfortunately, even with everything on the line, Bonapartes Restaurant in the United Kingdom swung for the fences but struck out hard.

It doesn't matter if a dish is vegetarian, vegan, meat heavy, or plucked from the sea, the ingredients need to be fresh, plain and simple. Few places can withstand a Yelp review claiming dinner came with a complementary side of E.coli. When Ramsay wanders into the back of the house to chat with Bonapartes chefs, they're eager to serve him up their signature dish: Scallops with Black Pudding Sauce. But, not the pudding you're thinking about. This is blood sausage, and it's freakin' delicious. So what could go wrong? 

How about the fact the scallops are raw. Before Ramsay even opens his mouth after taking his first bite, he storms out the back door and coughs them up onto the ground. Serving rancid scallops to a Michelin-rated chef will haunt the employees at Bonapartes  for a long time to come.

Carvery Platter at The Priory

When Chef Gordon Ramsay first walks into The Priory on their episode of Kitchen Nightmares, the decor is more than a bit overwhelming. It looks more like he's accidentally wandered into a bustling Catholic church than into a restaurant (which makes sense seeing as it once was a chapel). Then you see the carving stations where the cooks lop off huge chunks of meat for guests who stare in awe at the glistening carnivorous meal they're about to dive head-first into. After Ramsay speaks with some of the other diners, he goes in for the kill: the Carvery Platter. It's basically a smattering of a bunch of different foods to offer a sampler-platter like experience. The chef pulls up a seat, takes a deep breath, and digs in.

Needless to say, Ramsay moves from item to item on his plate and has nothing but poor thoughts on them all. Right out of the gate, he bangs on one of the roasted potatoes with his knife and it sounds like he's clanging on cast-iron (stating they're "cooked to f***"). He actually describes cutting through his tuft of sloppy stuffing like "trying to cut through a silicone implant." The Yorkshire pudding is soggy and doughy, and the meat — which is the focal point of the entire restaurant — is plagued with dryness. 

Prawns in Chocolate Sauce at La Parra de Burriana

The meticulous pairing of ingredients is of utmost importance, especially when a chef's trying to serve a dish meant to pack a memorable punch. Cooking is all about taking risks to see what works, and before adding something to the official menu, it better work — it's a huge waste of time and money if not. At La Parra de Burriana in Spain, the head chef apparently missed the memo.

The first thing Ramsay notices while flipping through the menu during this episode of Kitchen Nightmares is the confusing array of themed food the restaurant serves. One night burgers are the sole focus, another night sees Asian food as the primary cuisine. Regardless of the head-scratching moment, Ramsay takes on the Prawns in Chocolate Sauce, Chef Laurence's signature dish. Prawns? In a chocolate sauce? Yea, Ramsay's right there with you.

The sauce isn't pure chocolate. It's a "hot over-spicy chili chocolate sauce" that, according to Ramsay, is the result of "stupid arrogance." It's a failed attempt to pair ingredients that don't belong together. Sometimes the burning desire in your gut to do something crazy should simply stay a desire, as opposed to manifesting onto a menu.

Sushi Pizza at Sushi Ko

Even if you don't embrace the foodie culture running rampant throughout major cities nowadays, your ears perk up at the words "sushi pizza." It's actually possible to combine two extremely different foods and keep it delicious? Yes, it's possible. But, sometimes that "sushi pizza" you see on the menu should have stayed two different foods: sushi and pizza. Chef Ramsay's experience in this episode of Kitchen Nightmares at Sushi Ko in Thousand Oaks, California, agrees.

Immediately, Ramsay notices the head chef, Chef Akira, loitering around the host stand, prompting Ramsay to convey a natural anxiety considering the person who runs the kitchen operations isn't in the kitchen. When the "pizza" (if you can even call it that) finally arrives, the server explains the dish consists of "rice, salmon, crab, mayonnaise, and some cheese." With one final look of apprehension, the chef takes his first bite.

Immediately, Ramsay spits the bite onto the plate, exclaiming, "That is rancid." Covering it up with his napkin so he presumably doesn't have to stare into the abyss of disappointment he just put into his mouth, he calls the dish "an insult to pizza and Japanese food." 

Vegetarian Sampler Platter at Dillon's

Vegetarians may never understand how people can stuff their faces with food that used to have a heartbeat and a face, and meat eaters certainly don't understand how a glistening steak doesn't crank anyone's appetite into high gear. Even though a chef might prefer meat, they must offer options for diners who crave greens and grains instead. That means if someone orders a meatless dish, you better make real sure it is.

Welcome to Dillon's, a restaurant in Manhattan, New York, that doesn't seem to pay too close attention to customers who require vegetarian options. The first dish Gordon Ramsay receives in this episode of Kitchen Nightmares, after hesitantly plopping down in a seat, is the Vegetarian Appetizer Sampler. Two suspicious-looking fritters stare at Ramsay while he clearly musters up the courage to delve in. Good thing he's brave.

Right out of the gate he describes the look of the fritters as "a dehydrated turd" (which is always appetizing). What quickly follows is a lightning strike of horrific proportions. One of the fritters has meat inside, and lamb is what Ramsay assumes. With this mistake, Dillon's just opened their doors to a brand new guest, and they sign their name "Massive Lawsuit."

Combo Platter at Fiesta Sunrise

The word "fiesta" emits a feeling of partying, freedom, music, and good food that gets hips shaking, appetites growing, and the need to relax with good company. So, when Chef Ramsay visits Fiesta Sunrise in West Nyack, New York, he naturally expects a fun environment along with a party of great food rocking out in his belly upon leaving. What he gets in this episode of Kitchen Nightmares, however, is far from a celebration.

The Combo Platter Ramsay receives comes immediately after an intense questioning of the restaurant owner, and the guy's clearly caught off guard. A scorching dish consisting of what looks like a taco, enchilada, and burrito arrives to an already-frustrated Ramsay. So begins his descent into darkness. 

Ramsay's initial impression is someone "got sick on his plate" because he can't immediately distinguish anything through the cheese-crusted mess of food. After dissecting the burrito like a surgeon performing an autopsy, he finds the chicken to be dry and the beef impossible to swallow. This is one fiesta you don't want to RSVP to.

Grilled Caesar Salad at Park's Edge

There are foods that belong on a grill (steak, burgers, chicken), and there are foods that don't. They don't need heat, they don't need open flames, and they certainly don't need a char. Well, Park's Edge in Atlanta, Georgia, gives cold dishes an unnecessary dose of heat, and Ramsay ain't impressed in this episode of Kitchen Nightmares.

The word "salad" often falls under the appetizer (or starter) section of a menu. It kicks off your appetite so your stomach's ready for a savory entree. However, when Ramsay sees "Grilled Caesar Salad" staring back at him on the menu, he's perplexed (as he should be). He literally stands up and clangs on a water glass like he's about to give a wedding dinner speech, and he ridicules the dish to every table of customers sitting around him. The lettuce leaves weren't cleaned thoroughly and the dressing was overly spicy when Ramsay finally tried it.

The message? Don't grill what doesn't need a grill. It's that simple.

Hot Potato Soup at Hot Potato Cafe

Whether you like soup, bisque, chowder, stew, the canned stuff, or mama's mystery sauce containing everything in the pantry, no one can deny the stuff is comforting. It coats your ribs, warms the soul, and then sends you to bed with visions of oyster crackers dancing through your head. The Hot Potato Soup at Hot Potato Cafe, however, doesn't quite offer the same comfort, as Ramsay quickly discovers in this episode of Kitchen Nightmares.

The chef wants to try a soup, so to the Hot Potato Soup he travels. At first glance, it looks like a regular bowl of chowder — nothing too exciting — but definitely nothing alarming. "That is a mess," were the first four words out of the chef's mouth. The kitchen workers stare in horror as his face contorts Cirque du Soleil-style while choking it down. He compares it to "lumps of glue," and then looks directly into the camera to confidently label it "a f***ing embarrassment." 

Sausage Pizza at Pantaleone's

It seems nearly any odd ingredient you can imagine has found its way onto a pizza at some point or another. Sausage, however, isn't an odd ingredient at all. It's a delicious breakfast meat that belongs on pizza, and restaurants should make it with ease considering there's one ingredient. Well, the people who serve Chef Gordon Ramsay a sausage pizza at Pantaleone's find a way to make it hard, in this episode of Kitchen Nightmares.

When the pizza arrives to his table, Ramsay exclaims, "Holy crap!"  and for good reason. The thing's the size of a sewer grate, but way greasier. The dough is thick — way too thick, and each slice drips oil like a hospital IV. Smiling, the server informs Ramsay he's picking apart the "thin crust" pie. Ramsay stares in absolute astonishment. This might just be one of the reasons people opt for a pizzeria down the street over the oily mess this place claims is an Italian favorite.

Filet Mignon Fondue at Handlebar

If you've ever been to The Melting Pot, you know how fondue works. If you have friends in the Hamptons who throw fancy parties, you might know how fondue works. If you're a cheese freak who shoves as much of the stuff into your gullet as humanly possible, you absolutely know how fondue works. Unfortunately, a restaurant named Handlebar in New York, featured in this episode of Kitchen Nightmaresdoesn't know how fondue works.

Fondue-philes visit the restaurants because they like the cook-your-own food mentality; it's interactive fun, and the outcome is delicious morsels of skewered treats (which is the best outcome for anything ever). When a restaurant's not fondue focused, Ramsay thinks it's absurd to cook your own food. He's referring to Handlebar's Filet Mignon Fondue, where raw chunks of steak are dipped into bubbling oil to cook to temperature. In an act of hopeful luck, he tosses salt over his shoulder and says a prayer. Welp...

He goes full-on Gordon Ramsay mode, comparing the meat to "dog food" when it comes out. He drops the "it's rancid, pointless, tasteless" bomb after one bite and shrugs his shoulders in disbelief. To Handlebar: just fon-"don't."

Snapper Anna at Anna Vincenzo's

The wealthy community of Boca Raton, Florida, is the location of Anna Vincenzo's, an unfortunately unpopular Italian restaurant run by a self-taught chef named Cece. Cece's big, she's brash, and she's one of the main reasons her staff believes business has greatly slowed. When Ramsay and his Kitchen Nightmares entourage arrive, he knows it's time to immediately open a menu, order up some of their most popular dishes, and prepare to pick it all apart Gordon Ramsay style. And man, does the staff look stressed. Honestly, we can't blame them.

Ramsay takes a long look at the menu before asking for the Salmon Divino, a Snapper Anna, and the Del Nonna — what he's told is a restaurant favorite. The scowling look on the chef's face increases with every close inspection of the ingredients, but the Snapper Anna revolts him to no end. He actually asks, "Where is the snapper?" and is told it's "under all that" ("that" referring to the mess of garnishes) by the server. As he's poking around a pile of uncooked fish-flavored mush, he calls it a "dog's dinner." And, judging by the look of it, there's likely a dog somewhere roaming the kitchen looking for their missing meal.