Kitchen Nightmares revealed that the Black Pearl closed down because its owners had reverted to their old ways, but the owners have a different opinion.
The Black Pearl episode from the second season of Kitchen Nightmares has always stood out as one of the show’s most notorious.
This is partly because the restaurant closed before chef Gordon Ramsay could even revisit it, and partly because the ex-owners blamed Ramsay and the show for Black Pearl’s closure.
The Kitchen Nightmares Black Pearl episode
Gordon Ramsay’s restaurant rescue reality series, Kitchen Nightmares is certainly never shy with the gritty drama and enticing workplace gossip.
But the Black Pearl episode from the second season of the show will go down in history as one of the most dramatic episodes ever.
In fact, things were falling apart so badly at the Black Pearl even before Ramsay and his trademark fiery temper ever arrived that the three owners had stopped speaking to each other completely, outside of the occasional text message or email.
And even though Ramsay tried his very best to transform the restaurant over the course of the episode (he even went as far as introducing a lobster claw-machine), the “Revisited” episode revealed that all of these efforts ultimately failed.
Why Black Pearl from Kitchen Nightmares is no longer open
The juicy conflict between Ramsay and David Leonard, Greg Ryan and Brian Woods, three ex-owners of the Black Pearl is only part of the reason why the season two, episode five “Black Pearl” episode has become one of the most notorious episodes in Kitchen Nightmares’s history, as the real drama started way after the episode was actually filmed.
Kitchen Nightmares has never had the best success rate when it comes to the restaurants featured on the show.
But the Black Pearl is one of the few restaurants featured throughout the course of its seven seasons which closed down just days after the episode aired in September 2008.
The Black Pearl closed down so abruptly that Ramsay did not even have time to film a “Revisited” episode at the restaurant.
However, he did have time to get in contact with one of the Black Pearl’s ex servers, Steven.
Steven explained in the 2010 “Revisited No. 3” episode that he suspected that the reason why Black Pearl ultimately closed its doors is because everything at the restaurant slowly reverted back to the way that it was before Ramsay’s intervention, and David also withdrew from the business almost completely.
Steven also mentioned that the Black Pearl’s financial situation may have worsened even more before it closed its doors, as he was unable to cash his last paycheck.
However, it is worth noting that the owners seem to have an entirely different idea as to what led to the Black Pearl closing down so shortly after Ramsay’s visit.
Why the owners think Black Pearl closed down
The owners of the Black Pearl posted a letter to Eater New York just weeks after their restaurant closed down in 2008.
They claimed that they had seen a drop of more than 50 percent in revenue, among other things, after Ramsay’s changes were implemented.
This letter mentions everything from how “horrible” Ramsay’s menu changes had been, to the “asinine” of an idea that the lobster machine was.
It then goes on to blame Ramsay for the restaurant’s closure, before thanking the all of the Black Pearl diners for their support.
Was Black Pearl replaced?
When Ramsay returned to New York to see what had happened to the Black Pearl after his departure, the seafood restaurant had been replaced by a southern BBQ restaurant called “Hog Pit NYC”.
This restaurant has also since closed down, and the former Black Pearl location is now being occupied by a different restaurant. This eatery offers food, spirits and live music and is called “The Flatiron Room NoMad”.
Where to watch Kitchen Nightmares
If you are an avid Kitchen Nightmares fan, you may already know that the series has just been renewed for a brand new, eighth season, after nine years with no new episodes.
So, if you want to re-watch the show before this new season starts airing in September 2023, or even if you just want to watch the Black Pearl episode again, it is best to do it sooner rather than later.
Kitchen Nightmares is available on a range of platforms, including buy and rent platforms like Amazon Prime Video and Google Play, but also on various subscription-based streaming sites like Hulu, fubo TV, Disovery+, Crackle, Peacock and more.
Moreover, you can watch the show for free on platforms like Freevee, Pluto TV, Plex and The Roku Channel.