Restaurant Revisited: Pelican Grill

by in Shows, April 25th, 2012

Robert Irvine swooped into Seabrook, Texas, to help owners John and Laura Walker save their breakfast and lunch spot, the Pelican Grill. The Walkers filled us in on how business is going a few months after their Restaurant: Impossible makeover.

Three months later, the Pelican Grill is thriving with a 40 percent increase in business and expanded hours that include dinner service.

The success comes on the heels of a bizarre setback. One month after the renovation, a car crashed through the front door of the restaurant in the middle of the night, causing $6,000 in damages. Thanks to the generosity of friends and family, repairs were made quickly and the Pelican Grill remained closed for only eight days.

Suppliers now deliver food twice a week to the restaurant, giving John the time he needs to properly manage the front of the house. He makes just a few trips a week to buy fresh fish.

John and Laura are hiring more staff to handle their boom in business. Laura created new job descriptions and checklists to help hold employees accountable. The head cook, Oscar, quit, along with a few servers. Oscar’s replacement now manages the back of the house. With the recent success, the owners have promoted their son Bob to night manager.

“Chef Robert truly wants everyone to succeed and only tells the truth,” Laura and John wrote, reflecting on their Restaurant: Impossible experience. “Everything he says needs to be said and heard by the owners and staff.” To Robert and the entire Restaurant: Impossible team, “we could never thank you enough for your kindness, concern, knowledge and dedication. All of you are our extended family.”

More from Restaurant Revisited:

Valley View (March 14)

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Comments (830)

  1. Lisa says:

    I believe it's called "other channels" if you don't like it don't watch it! There are many of us that adore the show and wouldn't miss an episode. Sorry if your TV only gets the one channel!

  2. RON says:


  3. walt_pinkston says:

    On a recent Sunday afternoon we drove by the Pelican Grill to see how they were doing. The sign in the window said OPEN, but there were no cars in the parking lot! This was around 1:00-1:30 when the place should be crowded.

    That matches up with most other times when we pass by and see plenty of empty parking spaces. I won't go inside again, after having TERRIBLE SERVICE about a week after the makeover was complete.

  4. Linda says:

    Put the updates back on the end of the show. Looking it up later on the computer doesn't always work because by the time I remember to do it, I've forgotten what the issues in the restaurants were in the first place.

  5. Anna says:

    Robert Irvine is a great chef and the way he helps people is amazing. If you look at his track record, most of the restaurants he has helped are still in business. Robert is amazing and wants to help people.

  6. Joanne says:

    Interesting viewpoint…and I'm sure an honest one.

  7. Kerry says:

    A lot of dirt, but I think ou should focus more on the business end. When you have outside experts come in and make-over your restaurant, provide you with logistical and operational support, and "nationwide" publicity complete with grand re-opening buzz, and still can't make it, you are in the wrong business. I started the restaurant business when I was 15, managed when I was 20, and got out of it at 35. I now get holidays off and make more money "with benefits". It is a hard business, but does have it's rewards, but you have to "love" and be passionate about food.

  8. Guest says:

    Truth be told, after reading your fictional story you sound like you need professional help.

  9. Reader and Watcher says:

    good show! please put updates on air!

  10. PAUL BECKERS says:

    I agree, please put updates on the air at end of each episode

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