Food Network’s show brings new life to Rock Island restaurant

A Rock Island restaurant overhauled by the Food Network is open for business. The owner’s talking about her experience with a tough TV chef. The owner showed News 8 inside for the first time.

It’s been a long few days for Goombazz Big City Eatzz owner Brenda Brewer, but now she can start to get back into the routine of things.

“It happened so fast and so much happened and we were beat up emotionally, we were raised up emotionally,” said Brewer, as she describes her experience on Food Network’s TV show, Restaurant Impossible.

The business had been open for almost a year, but Brewer wasn’t making enough money to cover expenses. So she applied for the show as last resort and waited for a call.

“I just broke down at my desk and I cried. I seriously cried, because we’ve been struggling financially as a new restaurant,” said Brewer.

The show led by host Chef Robert Irvine remodeled the entire inside giving it an industrial look with a big city feel.

“It seems more upscale now, definitely really fancy, I like it. I think it looks a lot better,” said customer Karissa Caballero.

Along the way she says Irvine didn’t hold back on the tough love.

“He thought our food was the worst food he’s tasted which I definitely argued with him about and our restaurant theme, he thought it looked tacky,” said Brewer.

You can also find a new look to their menu, cutting it down from 82 items to 30 and adding fresh ingredients.

“Our new menu does incorporate freshly prepared food, they’re all made from scratch,” said Brewer.

She says its too early to tell if the experience was worth it, Brewer says Irvine said something that will stick with her.

“He said ‘if Brenda fails, he fails and he wont let that happen’,” said Brewer.

Brewer said customer’s are missing some of the restaurants favorites so they plan on putting a few of them back on the menu. Owners have heard the show will air sometime in December, but haven’t gotten an official date from the show’s producers.