(keep reading to learn what happened)
Season: 2 | View All Season 2 Episodes
Original Episode Air Date: November 2, 2011
The Mad Cactus Address: 9175 Pearl Rd Strongsville, OH 44136
The Mad Cactus was a Strongsville, Ohio restaurant featured on Season 2 of Restaurant Impossible.
Though the Mad Cactus Restaurant Impossible episode aired in November 2011, the actual filming and visit from Robert Irvine took place before that.
It was Season 2 Episode 12.
The Mad Cactus is a Mexican-themed restaurant in Strongsville, OH.
If you’re not familiar with Ohio geography, Strongsville is a city of around 45,000 people that’s part of the Cleveland suburbs.
Tom Krukemeyer Sr has owned the Mexican restaurant for over twenty-five years.
He has been working there since he was twenty-two years old.
When The Mad Cactus initially opened, they were one of only four eateries in town.
There are more than sixty restaurants in the area now, and The Mad Cactus is struggling to compete with all those new entrants.
When Robert Irvine arrives, he is not impressed by the decor or the foul stench coming from the carpet.
Tom tells Robert he believes he has become complacent in running the restaurant.
The Mad Cactus had a manager for several years but has left after being offered another job. Now, Tom cannot afford to hire a new manager.
Robert Irvine stays to observe a dinner service and thinks the quality of the food and service needs improvements.
A staff meeting is called, and Robert tells them he will work on Tom’s skills as a manager, an improved menu, and management.
Yvette from the design team meets with Robert to discuss the plans.
Tom and the rest of the employees remove the furniture so the design crew can get to work.
Robert goes to the kitchen and wants to know why there is a difference in the food quality from lunch to dinner.
We learn that Steven, the night cook, makes food differently from Michelle, the day cook.
Michelle and Steve make the same dish, but neither is made from scratch, and both taste different.
The food is better during the day because it is fresh. After lunch, the food is set on a hot plate to be served at dinner.
To make sure they can cook before he renovates the kitchen, Robert has Tom, Steve, and Michelle make a dish.
The dishes the chefs created are tasty, and Robert is impressed.
Tom is told he needs to hire a manager as he cannot do everything by himself.
Christy, the former manager, is invited back by Robert. She is not returning to work but will help hire a new manager.
The following day Robert returns and is unhappy with the design team’s progress as they haven’t even laid the floor yet.
After lighting a fire under the design team, Robert Irvine gets to work on training the cooks.
The chefs will now use fresh ingredients, and Robert will show them how to prepare dishes.
The chefs feel confident after their cooking session with Robert.
Christy gives Robert a list of three names he should interview for the management position.
Tom is not happy with any of the interviewees and decides to take on the role himself. However, Robert thinks this is a bad idea.
To boost sales at the bar, Robert has created a new menu with new prices.
The design team finishes their work, and the owners love the changes. A wooden floor has been installed.
The customers are pleased with the new food and décor.
So was the Mad Cactus Restaurant Impossible episode a success? Keep reading our update to learn what happened next and how the restaurant is doing in 2024 and beyond.
The Mad Cactus Update - What Happened Next?
Now that we’ve recapped the Mad Cactus Restaurant Impossible episode, let’s talk about what happened to the restaurant after Robert Irvine and his crew left Strongsville, OH.
At first, things seemed to be looking up for The Mad Cactus as business was up by more than 20% after implementing the changes from Robert Irvine.
However, Tom doesn’t seem to have been happy with the Restaurant Impossible experience as he said that Robert Irvine was constantly getting angry and that some of the scenes were staged.
Perhaps as a result of that, The Mad Cactus brought back a lot of its old menu, which led to fairly predictable results…
Is Mad Cactus from Restaurant Impossible still open?
The Mad Cactus closed in July 2013, which was a little less than two years after the Mad Cactus Restaurant Impossible episode aired on TV.
At the time of its closure, the reviews for the restaurant were very bad, so it’s no surprise that it didn’t last.
There was also increasing competition from chain restaurants moving into the area.
In 2018, the building that used to house the Mad Cactus was demolished after having sat vacant since the restaurant closed in 2014.
The city demolished the building to hopefully entice a new business to move into that spot.
The location had been for sale since 2013 but there were no buyers. You can see these details in a Facebook post from the City of Strongsville Government.
The decision seems to have been a good one as the old Mad Cactus Strongsville, OH location is now occupied by a brand spankin’ new Arby’s.
Looks like Strongsville has got the meats!
Here’s the listing page for the Strongsville Arby’s location that replaced The Mad Cactus.
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Last updated: 2022-06-03 05:47