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Note to Gordon Ramsay: Readers Detail Problems at Monrovia Restaurant

Celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay will film his show "Kitchen Nightmares" at Monrovia's Sam's Kabob Room, and readers posted their criticism of the local mediterranean restaurant on Patch in advance of the show's arrival.

Monrovia Patch readers have spoken, and the consensus is that is sorely in need of the .

Here's what readers had to say about the restaurant, where Ramsay's "Kitchen Nightmares" show will be filmed starting July 13:

Linda Moca wrote: How exciting! What a fabulous opportunity for the owners! Those dirty pink table clothes, that have been there since the beginning of time, really got to go!

Monique wrote: We have been to this place once and I even made a comment "I think this place needs to be on an episode of "Restaurant Impossible"!" and we never went back. The place smelled musty, it was old, dingy, dark and very dirty. Even the cloth napkins stunk, the tablecloth was stained. The whole place was just very unappealing on many different levels.

Janie Duncan wrote: The place really needs a makeover. Their canopy they is used for outdoor events is disgusting. I will give it a try again after the makeover and see it it really has changed. I do try to support Monrovia businesses. Let's give Sam a chance!

Judy wrote: I hope Gordon doesn't make it hip and trendy. The evenings with music and belly dancing are fun and reasonably priced. And don't change the gyro sandwich!

Taishcha Simon wrote: The last time I was there was probably the last time I would be going there: I was served a plate of chicken that was flavored with Lemon Pledge furniture polish and made my mouth feel like it had been coated with wax, pita that was more like a type of shingle than a bread, hummus that was nothing more than pureed garbanzo beans; no spices & no olive oil, and tabbouleh that had annoyingly rock-hard bits of under-cooked cracked wheat that made me feel like I was eating sand. For dessert I had baklava that had been kept in the same compartment as stinky chopped onions and had absorbed the flavor of the onions. The only thing that tasted right was the Coke I had, but luckily they didn't make that.

Mitchell Miller wrote: I went in there once with a friend and left because these two kids were playing call of duty on the TV inside while we were trying to order our food.

Vanessa Gee wrote: These comments are horrible. I have been there SO many times and loved every moment in there. The family is so caring and always wants to get your order right. I feel very comfortable there. And the food is great! The Greek salad is amazing along with the chicken sandwich. It is a very unique restaurant with great service and delicious food.

Lara Leavitt wrote: My husband and I ate here once, and never returned. Hopefully Gordon can really turn this place around - it needs it!

Raymond Aguirre July 03, 2012 at 04:38 PM
Wow. Hope he can fix the mess. My wife and I walked in one day, and left within 5 mins. The place was so dated.
Karen Suarez July 03, 2012 at 04:43 PM
Congratulations to Sam's family! This will be great! All the best to you!
brett k July 03, 2012 at 05:13 PM
I started eating at sams a couple of years ago and I was very pleased with the way they treat you like family and the food was great they even gave us some dessert for free. They also deliver food to me at my business when I can't make it in. They are a nice family.
Elizabeth Chase July 03, 2012 at 05:31 PM
It will be great to have this place "corrected" and "repaired" by good ol' Gordon. One great thing about Monrovia is our variety of restaurants, all within walking distance in a charming Main Street America environment. We need a good kabob restaurant, and Sam's deserves the chance to shine!
Monrovia Mom July 03, 2012 at 09:42 PM
"We need a good kabob restaurant..." WHAT???? You've obviously never been to Mediterranean Garden Grill on Foothill!
Karla McGlone July 03, 2012 at 10:04 PM
so so excited to have the sam's overhauled!! they have great intentions but...just seems dirty and not that appealing!! looking forward to the fix up and what Gordon can do!!
Norma July 04, 2012 at 12:17 AM
I know Mediteranian food, and this is one of the worst I have ever had. I tried it once, the kabobs were cold, salty and over spiced and the rice tasted reheated. The salad was wilted and not fresh at all. The atmosphere is dull, the place looks unclean, feels unclean and the service is terrible. I have no idea how this resturaunt sayed openedd as long as it has. A makeover is desperatly needed, total overhaul of cooking, decoration, presentation you name it. Monrovia is a very special city and it deserves to have the best Resturuants to offer. Sam's is going to have the oportunity of a life time by having Gordon to help, I sure hope he doesn't take this experience for granted and continues after the overhaul is over, can't wait.
Adam Lincoln Rollins July 04, 2012 at 12:26 AM
This is wonderful. For years I have refused to go back to Sam's after 2 visits as the place was beyond dirty and grungy and it made me wonder if the parts the public saw was this bad, how bad was the sanitary condition of the kitchen. I still wonder how it has stayed in business this long. I concur that the Mediterranean Garden Grill is opposite of Sam's in every way.
Ronald Schwartz July 04, 2012 at 03:55 AM
Certainly the owners need this help and attention. So glad to see this happening. The owners have been so nice over the years and always make you feel like a special friend when you went in there. Unfortunately, the ambiance just wasn’t there. My wife and I never had a complaint about the food, just the atmosphere. With all the GREAT restaurants we have in Monrovia, it has been very easy to pass Sam’s up. Hopefully this will not be the case in a few weeks. Good Luck and look forward to walking in again.
R Terry July 04, 2012 at 08:40 AM
"the place was beyond dirty and grungy and it made me wonder if the parts the public saw was this bad, how bad was the sanitary condition of the kitchen". Really, if they can't keep up at least appearances up front, I can't imagine the kitchen to be less than much worse. How does this get by the Health Department? Sounds like these people have no concept of how to run a restaurant business even if they are friendly and make a few tasty things. I question that they will be able to continue with suggested improvements or suddenly become conscientious housekeepers.
Anne Margaret Kee July 04, 2012 at 04:15 PM
What do I think needs improvement at Sam's Kabob room? Sam! I was there once years ago and have never gone back. Too many good friendly restaurants in Monrovia to bother with this place. Anne
Michael George July 05, 2012 at 02:50 AM
Sam's Kabob room need to change Sam in order to get the place do good and I mean food and service, Sam is cheap with food and food ingredians(he dosent use good ingredians) and there is always one person for service . Mediteranian food has nothing to do of what Sam makes at his place, I have been in many Mediteranian resturants and I have tasted and ate much better food than the one he serve.
IDA-RED July 05, 2012 at 05:18 AM
I've only been there once but actually enjoyed the food and the service was fine. I often wondered why it was always so empty. Hopefully Gordon will be able to help if he's not too obnoxious and rude. Good luck Sam!!
Jennifer Overhoff July 05, 2012 at 03:46 PM
Aesthetics mean a lot. They may well be intended and the food may be ok- heck- they have lasted forever....but the place looks rat infested. When you run your hands across the table cloth and then you need to wash them- its time to go elsewhere. Too many good places in Monrovia now to have this sad looking place not get a sprucing.
Ronie July 11, 2012 at 07:21 AM
Last year we went in for lunch. The food was okay. As mentioned the decor is out of date and the place felt dirty. My toddler started screeching when she saw a cockroach running around near our table. The waitress saw it but was waiting on someone else and trying to ignore it. I kept shushing my child. It was awful. That was the one and only time we went in. Hopefully the show will help the owners reinvent the place into something magnificent.
R Terry July 11, 2012 at 05:47 PM
I think that reinvention will require new owners. Don't you think that after hearing these complaints they would be doing simple improvements on their own? I wonder what the health department has to say. I would not trust the kitchen if what you see is so bad.
Danny Bell July 13, 2012 at 06:57 PM
I never felt the it had the ambiance of a Mediteranian restaurant and the food seemed like fast food not chef cooked to order. Danny Bell Monrovia, Ca

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