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'It's all about the show not the restaurant'

Posted August 31, 2012

Village Pizza and Baja Luna Lounge owner Bernice Augusto wasn't entirely enamoured by her turn on national television last night, her restaurant featured in the series premiere episode of the Food Network's Restaurant Takeover, that also showcased her daughter Desiree being mentored in the kitchen by show host and chef Corbin Tomaszesk.

In an opening scene filmed last May by hidden cameras in the "before" part of the makeover, Tomaszesk is shown spitting out his first bite of pizza he was served suggesting it was inedible.

He showed Desiree how to improve the restaurant's top seller, the 'Tottenham Pizza' that included freshly made sausage sourced at a meat market in Caledon, and that would be sliced by the diner at their table and added as a topping, as something unique to their restaurant.

"It's all about the show not the restaurant," Ms. Augusto wrote this morning in an email reply that asked for her impressions of the episode which she too saw for the first time last night. "Corbin loved the food and there were no changes made to the menu."

The renovation cost $30,000 of which Ms. Augusto contributed half. She was shown arguing with head contractor Igor over destruction of her bar, which was ordered not be to touched.

At the reveal, Ms. Augusto was upset by the new look, dropping an 'f-bomb' expletive to express her distaste. However, she was more pleased by the renovations that occured in the Baja Luna Lounge, including to the aforementioned bar. But admits she's still not comfortable with the new look.

"It's not too bad right now I can laugh at it - hopefully there are no negative results," she wrote. "Basically (pardon me, but) BS. My daughter not taking over - she has own business. They make up story line and prompt you through it. All about TV. Oh well all good if business picks up. But I would not recommend it without mega research and scrutinizing the contract 110 per cent."

The Village Pizza episode repeats today at 3 pm and 7 pm and on Sunday at 6 pm and 11 pm.

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