Matt Moran was back on TV to try and knock some struggling restaurants into shape in The Chopping Block.
The premise was the same as last year, a secret critic reviews the restaurant, then Matt Moran gives advice about the menu, a $5000 makeover occurs, then 48 hours later the critic comes back to dine again.
The winner of the $20,000 is the place that gets the most stars from the food critic.
The first season never rated as high as channel 9 would have liked, so it is good that they are persisting with it, as it is an entertaining format.
The main change is Catriona Rowntree is not the host anymore. Matt Moran does that role. David Grant who was the critic season one was unable play the role anymore as his identity had been revealed.
Noted food writer Alan Saunders replaces him, and on first viewing he is not as acerbic as David was, but he should improve as he gets his TV legs.
The show was set in Shellharbour tonight with an 'Italian' restaurant Angelinas versus Tandoori Place.
Both of these business are struggling, and the problem usually boils down to management/owners not taking enough control. It amazes me that owners who have put thousands of dollars into the their own business that they are not control freaks and let their staff get away with lax practices or kitchens to pump out substandard food.
The action in this places always takes place in the kitchens. Angelina's had a determined, but over confident chef, and Tandoori Place had an experienced but lazy chef.
Matt Moran has a great knack of being warm whilst criticising the staff, he is no Gordon Ramsey and that is a good thing.
After a Matt Moran touch up Tandoori Place won. Angelina's lost due to Alan Saunders not receiving his food two hours after he had set down. The owners wife was using the docket machine and she was stuffing up. Why have someone doing something they have never done before on such an important night? Also where was the owner of Angelina's he was not managing either the floor or the kitchen.
Will the chef was devastated. My advice for him would be buy the business off the owner as with his enthusiasm he would improve place further.