Guy Fieri Restaurant Review: As Bad as Advertised? (2024)

Guy’s American Kitchen & Bar is now open in Times Square. What did we think of the experience? Read on for a review!

Guy Fieri Restaurant Review: As Bad as Advertised? (1)

Last November The New York Times published a review of Guy Fieri’s new Times Square restaurant, Guy’s American Kitchen & Bar, that was so scathing many believe it hit below the belt; it read like an exercise in hyperbole. However, living a mere hour from New York City, I was intrigued.

Truth be told, I’ve never been a huge fan of Guy Fieri. The Food Network star is best known for his spiky blonde hair, addiction to sunglasses and confusing fashion choices. But I have made a few of his recipes, and admittedly, they’ve been pretty tasty.

So back to the NYT article… I read it, reread it and then had some friends read it too – it was THAT brutal. With no prior affinity towards Guy, I still felt like I needed to give him a hug and a neck nuzzle.

Pete Wells, the author of the NYT review used words like, “nuclear waste”, “inedible” and “oil-sogged”… which instead of turning me off to Guy’s, intrigued me. I asked myself: “Could it really be THAT bad?”

Challenge accepted, Mr. Wells.

I talked a foodie friend of mine to come along for the ride. She gladly accepted, also having made a few of Guy’s recipes with great success. We milled over the menu for weeks online before the day we drove into the city.

We arrived in Times Square for an early lunch, right after opening at about 11:45, … and the place was empty.

We were welcomed by a hostess of average congeniality and seated at a table towards the front of the restaurant, near the bar area.

Looking around, the restaurant is pretty similar to basically any suburban chain restaurant you’ve ever been to, just on a larger scale. Our server was friendly and greeted us promptly.

After reading about the Watermelon Margarita that “glows like nuclear waste” I scanned the menu to place my order. It appears that glowing margarita has been removed from the drink list, however.

My friend and I both settled on Blueberry Mojitos – they were light on the alcohol, but overall, tasty and not overly sweet.

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I do have to mention that I was a little underwhelmed by the selection of specialty drinks on the menu. With a bar the size of the one they have, you would think that they would have lots of interesting concoctions. Count that as disappointment numero uno.

After scanning the appetizer list, we agreed on the California Egg Rolls as our starter. They were good, albeit slightly uninspired. The menu in itself is a lesson in well-spun adjectives. At first glance everything sounds major! But then, reading a bit further, you see through the jaunty on-purpose misspellings (Provolone Stix) and realize he is just selling you Fried Cheese.

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I guess I expected more.

We decided we’d stick to simplicity and sandwiches for our main lunch course. Now, I’ll tell you I went back and forth on whether to order an entrée or a sandwich. But in all honesty, I wasn’t drawn to any of the entrees. They were fairly typical (and boring) like steaks, ribs, and salmon.

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I settled on “Unyawns Cajun Chicken Ciabatta”. It’s described as “Grilled Cajun-spiced chicken breast with a slathering of Donkey sauce, shredded cabbage, and sliced tomato on garlic-butter toasted ciabatta”.

The food came out in a timely fashion, but my sandwich, while acceptable, wasn’t special in any way. I had to ask what “Unyawns” meant in the title. The server said that the “Onion Ciabatta bread” was what the sandwich was served on. Very confusing, even he admitted so.

The “slathering” of Donkey sauce was more like a wisp. Before we go any further, get your mind out of the gutter. Donkey Sauce is a spicy-ish mayo. I did ask for more, which the server brought out for me. Honestly, it wasn’t very spicy, and much more mayo-ey than anything else. Donkey Sauce FAIL.

My friend ordered “The Big Dipper”, which was a basically a French Dip sandwich. It was good. Not great. Sensing a theme here?

The portions are huge, which was to be expected, for sure. Despite being full, we decided to give Guy’s desserts a try. The server said they are all made in-house, fresh every day.

We chose the “Salted Whiskey Caramel Fool,” which was described as “Sea salt whiskey caramel sauce, macerated strawberries, toasted house made pound cake, fresh whipped cream and hazelnut brittle.” It was listed as a “Guy’s Signature Dish”, and again didn’t live up to my expectations of a signature dish.

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Sounds like a feast for the taste buds, yes? Well, it was essentially a parfait. Annnnd it was just ok.

Here’s the thing. I really, REALLY wanted to like Guy’s American Kitchen. Like, really. I mean, I read the NYT review and still went, hoping that Mr. Wells just had his britches in a wad. And while I didn’t find the food or experience nearly as offensive as Wells did, I won’t be rushing back.

If you happened to be going there and invited me along, I would go with you and try something new. But I certainly wouldn’t recommend it, especially when New York City has so many other amazing options from which to choose.

I expected Guy to raise the bar a little bit from the Friday’s around the corner.

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Guy Fieri Restaurant Review: As Bad as Advertised? (6)

You can ask for recipe ideas, talk about cooking techniques, or get help figuring out the right new pan set for you. If you’ve already joined, invite a friend along!

Guy Fieri Restaurant Review: As Bad as Advertised? (2024)

FAQs

Is Guy Fieri a legitimate chef? ›

While Fieri never went to culinary school and isn't technically a professional chef (he has a degree in hospitality management), the home cook gained his skills through experimentation in the kitchen and reading cookbooks. In fact, his love of cooking started at age 10.

What is one thing Guy Fieri won't eat? ›

If you watch Guy's travels on Diners, Drive-ins and Dives, you might think it is eggs, because Guy has made no secret of his disdain for those. Even still, he has eaten eggs several times on the show. The forbidden food is liver. More specifically, it is the dreaded liver & onions.

Why did Guy Fieri change his name? ›

But he didn't just make the name up — Fieri is actually his grandfather's given family surname. When his grandfather immigrated to the US from Italy, he changed the spelling to Ferry. As a nod to his grandfather, Guy changed his last name from Ferry to Fieri when he married his wife, Lori, in 1995.

How much did Food Network pay Guy Fieri? ›

But here's what we know more specifically: In 2021, Fieri signed a new contract with the Food Network for his popular Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives and Guy's Grocery Games shows. According to Forbes, that deal paid the celebrity chef $80 million over three years, a $50 million raise from his previous agreement.

Is Bobby Flay a Michelin chef? ›

The Las Vegas Mesa Grill earned Flay his only Michelin Star in 2008, which was taken away in the 2009 edition. Michelin did not publish a 2010 or 2011 Las Vegas edition, so the star could not be re-earned. Bolo Bar & Restaurant closed its doors on December 31, 2007, to make way for a condominium.

Is Guy Fieri one of the richest chefs in the world? ›

Guy Fieri: at least $70 million (£55m)

The shrewd Fieri has used his small-screen success to build an off-screen business empire, which includes restaurants, cookbooks and edible items. His total net worth is estimated to be between $70 million (£55m) and $100 million (£79m).

Does Guy Fieri eat healthy? ›

Fieri still eats "unhealthy" food, but only when it's really good. “I'll use pizza as an example,” Fieri told me. “Pizza is one of those things when it's good, it's really good. And when it's bad, people still eat it.

Who is Guy Fieri's husband? ›

How many restaurants does Guy Fieri actually own? ›

As of 2024, Guy Fieri currently owns 17 brands and hundreds of restaurants, since many of his restaurants have multiple franchises and locations.

Did Guy Fieri leave the Food Network? ›

Guy Fieri is sticking with the Food Network. The celebrity chef has struck a new, three-year deal with the Warner Bros. Discovery-owned cable network. It comes after he struck a similar deal in April 2021.

Is Guy Fieri still married? ›

Who is Guy Fieri's family? Guy Fieri and his wife, Lori, have been married for 29 years, having wed in 1995. They have two sons, Hunter Fieri, 27, who has appeared on his father's Food Network show "Tournament of Champions," and Ryder Fieri, 18.

Who is richer Guy Fieri and Bobby Flay? ›

Who is worth more Bobby Flay or Guy Fieri? This is one circ*mstance in which Guy Fieri beats Bobby Flay in a big way: Fieri's net worth eclipses Flay's by a cool $40 million.

Is Guy Fieri a billionaire? ›

What is Guy Fieri's net worth? According to Celebrity Net Worth, Guy Fieri's net worth in 2024 is $100 million. Between 2021 and 2027 Fieri will have earned $180 million from Food Network alone, not to mention his restaurants, cookbooks, and countless other endeavors.

Who is the highest paid person on Food Network? ›

The Mayor of Flavortown is the highest paid food personality on TV. Guy Fieri is everywhere. You didn't need me to tell you that. The longtime Food Network personality is a staple on TV (you've at least seen one episode of Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives) and runs a slew of successful restaurants around the world.

Is Guy Fieri's Flavortown kitchen real? ›

Flavortown Kitchen is a delivery only restaurant featuring real-deal flavors from Chef Guy Fieri.

Does Guy Fieri's son get paid? ›

Guy Fieri refuses to leave sons any money unless they get 'two degrees:' They will have to 'take it from me' Guy Fieri revealed what it will take for his sons to inherit his multi-million dollar fortune. “Shaq said it best,” the “Diners, Drive-ins and Dives” star told Fox News on Wednesday.

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