A new chef is in town, straight from Hell’s Kitchen

I reviewed Monterey Restuarant right after they opened. Conversation heated up on LBfoodie.com where most people agreed that the food was extremely bland. I had to do a followup review after LBfoodie readers accused 165_heather-westme of not being mean enough towards the restaurant in my review. The problem is, I feel like I’m too mean to every restaurant in town. Just look at my latest Prix Fixe review. It’s not that I hate every Long Beach restaurant. I actually happen to like a lot of them. I just want some of them to step up their game because they could and should be better.  Like Rockville Center, Long Beach needs to be a restaurant destination town. It deserves to be. It is now, but it can be better. yes, I am being redundant on purpose.

Anyways,  Monterey Restuarant stepped up by selling its soul to the devil by summoning Heather West straight from Hell’s Kitchen as their head chef. I guess she’s good. I never watched the show, but she was the winner of the second season.  Has anybody tried Monterey with their new head chef yet? If so, how is it?  Where is Chef Ramsay when you need him?


5 Replies to “A new chef is in town, straight from Hell’s Kitchen”

  1. One only has to wonder that If this Chef was so good that she was “ Hell’s Kitchen’s head chef” because she won 1st prize on the show… How come she’s no longer there? And How come she was available to come to Long Beach? Inquiring minds want to know? I would thank that a real Top Chef can do better than work in a Long Beach restaurant that received such so-so reviews. Very rarely is a person qualified for the position of a “Head Chef” need to come to a small town like Long Beach. But I’ll admit, this restaurant “Monterey” needs all the help it can get.

  2. I was thinking the same thing. The thing about Monterey – the owners obviously have a ton of money. They spent a pretty penny on that place. By Hiring a chef from Hell's Kitchen, they are basically accomplishing two things:
    1. Fixing the main problem with the restaurant – the food. If this girl learned anything from Chef Gordon Ramsay, I am sure she is pretty good. Why isn't she on the show anymore? Who knows. I think they pick new winners every year. Why would she still be on that show?
    2. They created a buzz by hiring a "celebrity." Of course, that is open for interpretation if this Chef really is a celebrity. But you say she was on a TV show and people will come. It's a gimmick. Heck, I was disappointed in the food a few months ago, now I am willing to give them another shot.
    Also, sure we think of Long Beach as a "small town," but don't forget that it is a stonethrow away from one of the best cities in the world and it's the only beach community that is linked to that city via Train. There is population and money here. Why wouldn't she want to work in Long Beach? Heck, I want to work in Long Beach. It kills me everyday that my day job pulls me away.

  3. Anthony, I think you read me wrong.. When I called Long Beach a “small town” I meant rather than a high profile restaurant towns like Manhattan or Las Vegas.
    Why would this “Winner” of a prime TV show not be there, where she could earn major big bucks, but instead settle in Long Beach……….. Only one answer, she’s most likely not good enough.

  4. This place didn’t do it for me.
    If you care to know, here are MY favorites.
    For burgers It’s LI Cheeseburger. They’re well-priced and consistently good.
    West End Cafe – Carle Place
    Blackstone’s or Bryant & Cooper’s for Steaks, also Brooks and Porter’s and add Teller’s Chop House.
    Toku for Asian it’s overall It’s amazing.
    Dodici in rockville centre for Italian, also Emilio’s in Commack on Jericho Tpke has a great, modern Italian Menu with classic favorites. Matteo’s of Long Beach is also good but not great.
    Cippolini in Manhasset.
    Mirabelle’s is excellent.
    For Sush: Kodobuki in Babylon Village is the best on the Island, and Minami, Central Ave in Massapequa
    Swingbelly’s in Long Beach for pretty good BBQ
    Pizza- Coal oven pie at Salvatore’s in Port Washington or coal oven by the slice at Massa’s in Jericho and, it Umberto’s in New Hyde Park.
    Chinese it’s Orchid in Garden City for classic Chinese
    Gabrielle’s in Rockville Centre is always a winner.
    Bigelow’s for (fried) Clams.
    Riverbay for Seafood.
    Lido Deli for great old fashioned Deli.

  5. Izzy, I know a lot of those places. West End Cafe, Salvatore’s, Original Umbertos are some of my favorite restaurants of all time, but I was trying to keep this all about Long Beach and the restaurants we have here. Great list by the way.

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