Black Pearl Kitchen Nightmares Update – Open Or Closed?

Is Black Pearl still open?

Current Status: >> CLOSED <<
(keep reading to learn what happened)

Season: 2 | View All Season 2 Episodes
Original Episode Air Date: September 25, 2008
Black Pearl Address: 37 W 26th St New York, NY 10184
Black Pearl Kitchen Nightmares update

Episode Recap

Black Pearl was a New York City restaurant featured on season 2 of Kitchen Nightmares.

In this episode of Kitchen Nightmares, tensions run high as Chef Gordon Ramsay visits Black Pearl in New York City, New York.

Black Pearl, a restaurant that specializes in lobster, was once located in downtown Manhattan and owned by David and Brian.

The business was booming so David and Brian put out an ad for a third investor and met Greg, who now owns Black Pearl in their new location in Midtown.

The relationship between the three owners was professional until the restaurant started to lose money, $250,000 to be exact.

The stress of running a restaurant that loses more money than it makes took a toll on the relationship between the three business owners and now David, Brian, and Greg no longer speak to each other and only communicate via email or text only.

A restaurant divided cannot stand, and that is ever-present as the owners and staff members reveal their frustrations and concerns regarding management or the lack thereof.

One of the staff members revealed to Gordon that the three owners are never there at the same time, and Chef Ramsay is concerned that the owners don’t want to be there at all.

After meeting with the staff, Chef Ramsay orders the clam chowder, lobster mac and cheese, and 3 lobster rolls, supposedly the best food on the restaurant’s menu. To Gordon’s dismay, the clam chowder was watery, the mac and cheese were too chewy, and the lobster rolls were bland.

Chef Ramsay then sits down with the three feuding owners and discusses his concerns regarding the food.

The owners blame each other and are unwilling to take ownership of the unimpressive menu items. Chef Ramsay begins to question the three business owners’ level of commitment to the restaurant.

Gordon then wishes to witness how the restaurant operates on a busy night with all three owners present.

David works in the kitchen, expediting orders, his lack of experience and confidence is seen in the quality each dish exhibits, resulting in a large number of dishes being sent back to the kitchen.

With Greg out of his element in the kitchen, he decides to pace the dining area. When a table sends back a dish, instead of addressing the customer’s complaint, David decides to argue with the complaining customer instead.

Weird smells coming from the food, grit found in the mussels, and a chef selling Canadian lobster as Maine lobster, Chef Ramsay has seen enough and calls a staff meeting.

During the staff meeting, Chef Ramsay encourages the staff members to write down questions they would like the owners to address, the last question asked addressed the most important issue the restaurant faces: the lack of a general manager.

It is suggested by a staff member that one of the three owners become the general manager.

The owners discuss who will become the general manager while Chef Ramsay adds a new special to the night’s menu. During the dinner-rush Brian is sent home, while Greg showcases his strengths with customers, David insults staff members in the kitchen and patronizes customers in the dining area.

At the end of the dinner rush the staff votes for Greg to become the general manager of the restaurant and Brian and David sign a document making it official.

Overnight the restaurant receives a facelift but David does not like the changes, nor does he like the new lobster claw game or the new way of advertising-a man passing out flyers in Times Square wearing a lobster costume.

David also reveals, hours before the relaunch, that he does not like the new menu items Chef Ramsay has put together.

On the day of the relaunch, we discover that Greg has no control in the kitchen as there is a long delay in getting food out of the window and to the customer’s table.

However, once the food is delivered all worries go out the door when the customers find themselves pleased with how the food tastes.

At the end of the night Gordon reveals his thoughts about each owner, calling Brian lazy, stating Greg’s heart is in the right place, and claiming David does not care about the Black Pearl, revealing his fears for the restaurant’s fate if David remains a part of the team.

Black Pearl Update - What Happened Next?

Black Pearl closed just four days after the Kitchen Nightmares episode aired on TV, so this was definitely not a successful update by Gordon.

As part of the closure, the co-owners, posted a long rant blaming Gordon Ramsay for the Black Pearl restaurant issues and closure.

In the rant, they said that the Kitchen Nightmares show was “a joke”. They also said that the changes “Gordy Ramsay” made (I guess the nickname is an insult?) led to a 50% drop in revenues and that the restaurant was never able to recover financially.

They also said that the episode aired later than they were originally promised which is why the restaurant wasn’t able to sustain itself much past the episode air date.

The rant goes on and on, but the general idea is that the Black Pearl owners were not happy with their restaurant’s experience on Kitchen Nightmares.

As of 2021, the old Black Pearl restaurant location is now occupied by a new restaurant called The Flatiron Room. The reviews for the restaurant seem good, with a 4.5 star rating on its Yelp page.

What happened to the Black Pearl owners?

David Leonard, one of the restaurant’s owners, is performing as a musician. You can learn more on his personal website. We’re not sure what happened to the other Black Pearl owners.

If you know anything, let us know in the comments!

Did Gordon Ramsay ever go back to the Black Pearl?

No, Gordon Ramsay did not have a chance to return to the Black Pearl because the restaurant closed just four days after the Kitchen Nightmares episode aired.

However, Kitchen Nightmares did film an episode where he went back to the old Black Pearl location and visited the new restaurant in that spot. This re-visit aired on May, 21 2010. However, the restaurant featured in that episode is also closed now.

In the episode, he also talked with Steven from the Black Pearl. As part of the interview, Steven revealed that his last paycheck from The Black Pearl bounced, so the restaurant was really in a bad financial situation.

You can see the entire re-visit in this YouTube video:

More Information

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Last updated: 2021-11-27 01:10

4 thoughts on “Black Pearl Kitchen Nightmares Update – Open Or Closed?”

  1. They were 3 rich self-centered arrogant guys that just wanted to be big shots, used Ramsey for Marketing and didn’t take any advice, just blame. You have to take responsibility and you sold what he invested and did you pay him back or pocket it….3 ..2 faced loooooosers!! Did you want him to cook and run it too????

    • Exactly! These three jerks blame chef Ramsey for their failures, just like so many of the restaurants he helps on Kitchen Nightmares. These people can’t take accountability. They were in trouble before he even got there yet they always manage to blame Gordon for THEIR failure. Ungrateful A-holes.

  2. They blamed Ramsey and that makes me furious. Because, as the previous message pointed out they sold and pocketed rosy money. Greg was nice and did the best he could. However, that devil man child aka Maine EXPERT! Single handle tanked the joint.


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