Amy's Baking Company (Scottsdale, AZ) of 'Kitchen Nightmares' Infamy: Biting Off More than They Can Chew? (2015 UPDATE: FINALLY Closing Up Shop!)

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    May 15, 2013 12:32 PM GMT
    SamyandAmyABC-thumb-550x368.jpg

    I'm not even going to start with all the stuff that's been blowing up around this restaurant in the past week, because it's a LOT of stuff and, apparently unlike the food, it's ALL delicious!

    Amy's (or A.B.C.) is run by Samy and Amy Bouzaglo, the latter we're just now finding out has kind of a checkered past before getting into the food biz. Their restaurant already had a local reputation in the Phoenix area for ugly catfights with disappointed customers that extended online to the reviews on sites like Yelp and the local news outlets.

    Well, the not-quite-charm offensive has now gone global. Celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay paid a visit to A.B.C. back in December and, as now revealed in his season finale of Kitchen Nightmares, Amy's has the distinction of being the one eatery his show would not save -- Ramsay got up and walked out!

    GawkerIn six seasons of Kitchen Nightmares, Chef Gordon Ramsay has never quit on a client. Until last week, that is, when he found Amy and Samy Bouzaglo, owners of Amy's Baking Company in Scottsdale, Arizona, simply beyond help.

    "It is because they are incapable of listening," an exasperated Ramsay told viewers.

    Ramsay was being unusually euphemistic: Throughout the episode, the Bouzaglos threatened some customers, screamed profanities at others, fired waitstaff, and proved generally terrifying.

    "You have the right to run the business the way you want to run your business," Ramsay tells the couple after giving it his best shot. "I have the right to do the right thing. And the right thing for me is to get out of here."


    http://gawker.com/nightmare-restaurateurs-who-scared-chef-ramsay-flip-out-505815263

    The notoriety caused a mushroom-cloud explosion of commentary online -- a lot of disdain regarding the treatment of waitstaff (the owners pocket 100% of the tips) and some due to the store-bought food claimed to be freshly made and sold online with pictures stolen off the Internet, but mostly from the attytoods of the Bouzaglos toward seemingly everyone.

    It all seems to have gotten to Amy -- or "someone" (the couple now claims they were hacked) -- as the restaurant snapped back with spectacular invective-filled rants on their Facebook page, specifically at Yelpers and Redditers.

    A.B.C. Facebook comment (via Tucson Weekly)"WE WILL START A GENERATION OF TRUTHFULLNESS (sic) AND WE WILL FIGHT TO BRING PLACES LIKE, YELP AND REDDIT, AND HORRIBLE PEOPLE LIKE GORDON TO THE LIGHT" and "I AM GODS CHILD. PISS OFF ALL OF YOU. FUCK REDDITS, (sic) FUCK YELP AND FUCK ALL OF YOU" and "AMERICA IS ABOUT RESSLING, (sic) IT IS NOT A BIG DEAL. THE CAKES WE OFFER ARE EXPENSIVE BECAUSE WE HAVE TO REPACKAGE AND SHIP"


    Included in the mudslinging is a screenshot of clearly doctored Reddit comment suggesting the cops were calling Redditers, threatening them to stop criticizing and digging into the restaurant and its owners. "Amy's" caption below the screenshot: "SEE? WE WILL GET YOU"

    https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10151532662072900&set=pb.176091292899.-2207520000.1368519835.&type=3&theater

    I wondered who here has been watching this piping hot mess unfold? And how much longer can A.B.C. possibly survive? Will the negative press and commentary lure enough morbidly-curious eaters to actually gain this place some new business? Any Phoenix-area RJ'ers out there familiar with the place?
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    May 15, 2013 1:00 PM GMT
    http://blogs.phoenixnewtimes.com/bella/2010/08/ouch_todays_hard_lesson_on_yel.php



    The response to the one-star Yelp review in 2010 that gave the restaurant local infamy.
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    May 15, 2013 1:08 PM GMT
    http://blogs.phoenixnewtimes.com/bella/2012/12/amys_baking_company_kitchen_nightmares_gordon_ramsay_scottsdale_arizona_taping.php?page=all

    The fallout from the December 2012 Kitchen Nightmares taping.

    (The show invites local eaters to share their thoughts with the producers, often in advance of Ramsay's arrival).

    Phoenix New Times"It was very tense," the diner tells me, "you could hear Amy [Bouzaglo] yelling in the kitchen and Samy [Bouzaglo's husband] was running all over the dining room. Other tables were complaining and people were leaving because they were waiting so long for their food. My partner and I had reservations for 6:45. By 9:30, we still hadn't received our pizza."

    Thinking the drama might be part of the show, the diner talked to one of the show's producers, who confirmed that what was happening was real.

    Still without pizza, the diner went up to the cash register to talk to Samy, who was arguing with another customer. When Samy saw the diner, he told him his pizza was coming. When the diner answered that Samy had told the diner that an hour ago, Samy responded by saying, "Why don't you go fuck yourself."

    And, according to the diner, it wasn't long before Amy came out to see what was happening.

    "She was yelling and screaming 'get the fuck out' and saying if we weren't going to pay for our drinks, she was going to call the cops. She called me a 'tough guy' and said, 'You better correct your acting skills if you're trying to get on TV.' The producer said he would pay for our bill and that we should leave."

    The diner adds, "The producers told me they had never seen anything like this."

    When the diner and his partner walked out, he says the Scottsdale police were already on the scene and tells me they were responding to a 911 hangup call he presumes was made by Amy. He goes on to say he heard Amy tell the police she had been "set up."

    To add to the evening's disaster, the diner says he never did get to see Gordon Ramsay.
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    May 15, 2013 1:29 PM GMT
    "Amy's Baking Company Owners Threaten Diner" video, looks to be (hopefully?) the same guy mentioned above:

    http://eater.com/archives/2013/05/13/gordon-ramsay-kitchen-nightmares-amys-baking-company.php
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    May 15, 2013 1:32 PM GMT
    The restaurant's sole employee... Fired! For asking, "Are you sure?" Hopefully she eventually gets the tip money owed to her.



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    May 15, 2013 1:45 PM GMT


    Both these folks need help. And I don't mean server help.
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    May 15, 2013 1:50 PM GMT
    "We Were Hacked!" Mmmm Hmmmm.... icon_confused.gif

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    May 15, 2013 2:05 PM GMT
    I was just reading about this on HuffPo
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/05/14/amys-baking-company-kitchen-nightmares_n_3274345.html?utm_hp_ref=mostpopular

    They have a link to the actual episodes of kitchen nightmares from the article.

    The episodes are so crazy, I'm waiting for someone to say it was all staged. These people can't be real. icon_lol.gif
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    May 15, 2013 2:25 PM GMT
    creyente saidI was just reading about this on HuffPo
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/05/14/amys-baking-company-kitchen-nightmares_n_3274345.html?utm_hp_ref=mostpopular

    They have a link to the actual episodes of kitchen nightmares from the article.

    The episodes are so crazy, I'm waiting for someone to say it was all staged. These people can't be real. icon_lol.gif


    The Facebook screencaps are just WOW.

    No one is believing that any, much less ALL, of their social media pages have been hacked (Facebook/Twitter/etc.), or that any FBI/cops are investigating, because they act precisely like the posts displayed.
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    May 15, 2013 7:13 PM GMT
    Local Fox Reporter: "We didn't find any patrons complaining about their food."

    (((The place was packed with 2 people!)))



    Female diner: "She does all the baking herself, so I thought that was great." icon_lol.gif

    They just need a few dozen more gullible people like that coming in those doors all day!
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    May 15, 2013 7:24 PM GMT
    One of the 2 patrons was very impressed with the baked goods, which she believed the owner made. In fact the owner has admitted that she told people she baked those items (she also told Ramsay that in the nightmare episode) , but it has since been revealed she didn't make the baked goods.

    http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2013/05/14/amy-s-baking-company-a-real-life-kitchen-nightmare.html

    These people are so funny.

    dayumm saidLocal Fox Reporter: "We didn't find any patrons complaining about their food."

    (((The place was packed with 2 people!)))
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    May 15, 2013 7:55 PM GMT
    dayumm saidhttp://blogs.phoenixnewtimes.com/bella/2010/08/ouch_todays_hard_lesson_on_yel.php



    The response to the one-star Yelp review in 2010 that gave the restaurant local infamy.


    Joel L. (the Yelp reviewer from back in August 2010)In retrospect, I should have known better than to step foot into Amy's Baking Company (a.k.a. ABC Bistro)...

    -8 pm on a Saturday night, three tables are occupied
    -a sign on the door indicates they're looking for an experienced line cook, a dishwasher, waitresses, you name it
    -Pita Jungle, just a stone's throw away, is packed to the gills

    These are all bad signs. They go ignored, however, because I'd eaten one thing all day, and I had drove here to try their pizza. Never, ever again...

    (after ordering)...About three minutes later, the waitress drops off my pizza. "Your pizza", she says, leaves a plate and off she goes. I sat for a moment, confused as to how things happened so quickly... After a closer inspection of the pie in front of me, it was evident that it had been reheated, as there were smaller tomatoes that had spent their time in the oven, and larger tomatoes that had barely been kissed by the heat of the oven.

    I took a bite, and was immediately underwhelmed. The crust had very little character, was slightly sweet but had that store-bought quality to it.... It's margherita - the ingredients need to shine to make such a simple pizza. These ingredients were sub-par. After two small pieces, I decided I was wasting my calories and just gave up on it.

    So I sat outside, not eating, and sat. And sat. Where the hell was the waitress? I glanced inside a few times, hoping to catch her eye, but she must have been occupied elsewhere.

    The owner comes out. "How'd you like your pizza?" Instead of immediately responding, I asked how it had come out so quickly. In short, he told me another table had ordered it, decided they didn't want it, and it sat in the kitchen for two minutes, who in turn decided to send it out to me since I didn't order anything else.

    Me: "Well, it didn't really taste fresh".

    Him: "No, no, our pizzas are the best. Ask our customers. You're the first person since we've opened to ever not like our pizzas".

    He got very defensive about the pizza, but I hadn't really launched a harsh criticism on the pizza, just said I didn't really enjoy it. So I sat some more, with an empty drink, and realized they wanted me gone. The owner wouldn't make eye contact with me. The server never came back out asking if I wanted something else. And they still hadn't refilled my drink.

    So I sat on a patio, alone, and decided to have a smoke. The waitress comes out...

    Her: "Sir, there's a no smoking sign over there, I was told to tell you to not to smoke here."
    Me: "Is this the last f*** you in this experience?"
    Her: "Yes, I think so".


    She walks away. I walk inside, pay the bill, and leave. No apologies, no discounts on the bill, nothing. $18 for weak iced tea and shitty pizza.

    This is arrogance in its worst form. I can forgive bad food, but I cannot forgive misplaced arrogance and the blatant dismissal of a customer, whether you agree with them or not.

    Perhaps the sign on the door should also say, "Wanted: New owner".

    I cannot, for the life of me, recommend this restaurant to anyone.


    Amy (one day later... she hasn't claimed THIS was hacked from almost 3 years ago... yet)Dear Joel,L. It is blatantly obvious to me why you were ALONE on a Saturday night!

    Read any of the reviews that have been written about us and you will see that EVERYONE loves us!! The only people that don't is our "Competition". We knew you had been sent by another restaurant before you even ordered your $14.00 Pizza...

    ...perhaps you are only accustomed to tasting the ones that come "fresh from the can!"...

    ...Perhaps your palate is not sophisticated enough to tell the difference.

    As for you having the Patio all to yourself unless you have been living on another PLANET it is summertime in ARIZONA MORON!!! Only TRAMPS and LOSERS want to sit outside in 110 temperatures!!!!

    Do US a favor and keep your ugly face and you ugly opinions to yourself and go back to the restaurant that you really work at!!

    I would LOVE for anyone who reads this review to come to ABC and try our Pizza. If you don't like it then I guarantee you don't have to pay for it.


    Looks more like, if you say you don't like it, you'll definitely be paying for it! icon_lol.gif
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    May 15, 2013 8:20 PM GMT
    http://www.kpho.com/video?clipId=8879131

    icon_lol.gif
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    May 15, 2013 8:22 PM GMT
    Some people will do anything to get on TV.......icon_rolleyes.gif
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    May 15, 2013 8:45 PM GMT
    Not that either of these two should be doing anything involving hospitality, BUT...

    I do wonder, why can't these two simply consider remaking the place into a Dick's Last Resort? That way they could "keep it real" and customers could just pretend it's satire and play along? Nobody goes to Dick's for the quality/authenticity of the food, either!

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dick's_Last_Resort

    WikiDick's Last Resort is a small bar and restaurant chain in the United States, known for its intentional employment of an obnoxious staff. The chain consists of twelve restaurants. The restaurant... uses picnic-style tables and no tablecloths...

    Dick's Last Resort teaches its servers to be obnoxious. In addition to the staff, the decor is considered to be "wacky". Patrons of Dick's are expected to be insulted, or placed in uncomfortable situations. Adult bibs and large, hand-made, paper hats are given to diners to wear during their stay. There are no napkins on the tables: they are generally thrown at the customers by the serving staff.


    Doesn't that sound like something that's right up these folks' alley? icon_razz.gif
  • gwuinsf

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    May 15, 2013 8:48 PM GMT
    My co-worker told me about this yesterday and I've been endlessly amused by them and the fallout. For some shockingly fun entertainment go back and read their Yelp reviews from several years ago, especially the ones where they reply to the reviews. It's so shocking and amusing.

    If the definition of insane is not at all being aware of the consequences of your actions, these two are totally insane.
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    May 15, 2013 9:19 PM GMT
    (S)Amy posted this comment to, "Are Yelp Extortionists Giving Restaurants the Shakedown" as "amysbakingco" in October 2012:

    http://blogs.phoenixnewtimes.com/bella/2012/05/yelp-extortionists-restaurants-shakedown.php

    Commenter "amysbakingco"We like to call them "The Camel Toe Mafia" just a bunch of Pussies hiding behind a computer screen, or working for YELP.


    CamelToeMafia? #notsurewhatthatis

    (yes I know what a Camel Toe is, it's the Mafia connection that intrigues me!)

    Of course, they missed themselves getting ripped in the opener of that very article!

    Phoenix New Times...we tend to report on restaurant owners behaving badly. Whether that be Amy's Baking Company's Yelp tirade or...
    icon_lol.gif
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    May 15, 2013 9:30 PM GMT
    Posting jmusmc85's thread because it was on RJ first! icon_cool.gif

    http://www.realjock.com/gayforums/3195618

    Plus he's linked the YouTubes of the full episodes (didn't link them here because I figured Fox would have had them unplugged by now!)
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    May 15, 2013 9:47 PM GMT
    Court docs detailing Amy's (previously, Amanda Bossingham's) prior jail sentencing for Social Security fraud:

    http://www.findforms.com/pdf_files/azd/20255/86-1.pdf

    (via FindForms)On November 6, 2003, Ms. Bouzaglo (formerly known and identified in this case as Ms. Bossingham), entered into a plea agreement with the Government in which she pled guilty to one count of Misuse of a Social Security Number, a class D felony offense.

    The criminal conduct occurred on August 16, 2001. Specifically, Ms. Bouzaglo pled guilty to submitting an application for a line of credit with M & I Bank using the social security number of another person. The Bank approved the line of credit in the amount of $15,000.

    On June 15, 2004, this Court sentenced Ms. Bouzaglo to fourteen months prison followed by thirty-six (36) months supervised release, and ordered her to pay $36,294.95 in restitution.


    This is the woman who wants to fuss about people hiding under false identities. icon_lol.gif
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    May 16, 2013 1:04 AM GMT
    http://www.azcentral.com/thingstodo/events/articles/20130515amys-baking-company-kitchen-nightmares-update.html

    Arizona RepublicThe opening scene of Fox’s “Kitchen Nightmares” with Amy’s Baking Company — the one where a customer gets pushed and then thrown out of the Scottsdale restaurant — was “more intense than even what they showed on TV,” said Matthew Pinnick, who witnessed the whole thing.

    Pinnick and three friends ate at the now-infamous bistro the night before the show’s host, chef Gordon Ramsay, came to town. The 36-year-old Goodyear resident is a fan of Ramsay and made reservations at Amy’s Baking Company through the show’s producers. He had never eaten at the restaurant before and was only vaguely familiar with the reputation of owners Salomon “Samy” and Amy Bouzaglo, who were known around town for lashing out at customers.

    “The amount of food that was going back to the kitchen was like nothing I’d ever seen before,” said Pinnick, an information-technology professional and high-school football coach.

    “I think that’s what started to tip the scales,” he said. “The guy (customer) who went to the counter, he was hamming it up a little more and was very vocal. We could hear Amy in the back yelling, ‘Nice job, way to play it up,’ and giving him fake applause. The guy got louder, and that’s when Samy snapped. He called the guy the C-word.”

    After that, Pinnick was certain the episode, taped in December, wouldn’t air. But he was wrong.

    Viewers got to see the Bouzaglos yell expletives at customers and take tips left for servers. Since the show’s season-finale episode aired Friday, there have been many more accusations and name-calling...

    On Tuesday, the owners claimed they never wrote the vitriolic comments. In a Facebook post signed Amy and Samy, they said, “Obviously our Facebook, YELP, Twitter and Website have been hacked. We are working with the local authorities as well as the FBI computer crimes unit to ensure this does not happen again. We did not post those horrible things.”

    On Wednesday morning, Scottsdale police spokesman David Pubins confirmed that “a report for computer tampering” was taken Tuesday at the restaurant’s address, 7366 E. Shea Blvd., and that the investigation is ongoing. (The FBI has not responded to a request for confirmation.)

    The drama may even reach the president. A person in Dacono, Colo., started a petition on the White House website titled “Have Amy Bouzaglo Committed.” (((ABC. icon_lol.gif Get It?))) It had several hundred signatures in a few hours. If it reaches 100,000, the petition would be reviewed by the Obama Administration and a response would be issued.

    A second petition was filed Wednesday on Change.org asking the U.S. Department of Labor to open an investigation of the owners for taking tips from servers. The owners have justified taking tips, saying they pay servers $8 to $14 an hour. Tipping policies have gotten companies in hot water in the past.

    In 2003, Amy pleaded guilty to the misuse of a Social Security number after she applied for a $15,000 bank loan. At the time, her last name was Amanda Bossingham (her ex-husband’s last name). She married Samy Bouzaglo in January 2004. She surrendered to federal authorities and entered prison in late 2008. She was released in October 2009.
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    May 16, 2013 12:29 PM GMT
    The waitress "Katy" (the one fired on the show merely for asking Amy, "are you sure?") joined Reddit and answered questions yesterday.

    http://www.reddit.com/r/IAmA/comments/1eegnm/former_waitress_katy_cipriano_from_amys_baking/

    Also, Katy interviewed with Scottsdale Arizona News:

    http://www.scottsdalearizonanews.com/2013/05/katy-cipriano-from-amys-baking-company.html
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    May 16, 2013 5:18 PM GMT
    Twitter war with Patton Oswalt??? Oh, yes, PLEASE. icon_lol.gif

    http://popbytes.com/amys_baking_company_vs_patton_oswalt/
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    May 17, 2013 1:06 AM GMT
    [paulharvey]"And NOW... the REST of the STORY!"[/paulharvey]

    http://www.bizjournals.com/phoenix/blog/business/2013/05/amys-baking-company-tells-its-side-of.html

    Phoenix Business BlogWhen beleaguered restaurant owner Amy Bouzaglo called Jason Rose Wednesday, the publicist and crisis management expert thought it was a joke.

    After all, the principal with Scottsdale-based Rose+Moser+Allyn Public and Online Relations had spent some time yesterday on KDKB-FM 93.3 sharing some candid comments about Bouzaglo and her apparent social media meltdown that thrust her and her restaurant, Amy’s Baking Co., into the national spotlight.

    Admittedly, Rose was skeptical at first, but Bouzaglo and her husband, Samy, met with him and shared their side of the story...

    When asked about the couple’s hacking assertion, Rose told me that issue would be discussed further in the coming days. The couple will host a press conference next week to address the issue.

    While Scottsdale police confirmed they were investigating the issue, the FBI neither confirmed nor denied its involvement.

    During this week’s turmoil, the couple has defended their tipping policy, having said their servers are paid higher than standard wages of between $8 and $14 an hour. However, Rose told me they will alter their wage and tipping structure to bring it more in line with industry standards.

    “While they and I don’t feel they have anything to apologize about — and the show grossly misconstrued their compensation to employees — they’re going to change the policy to make it more industry standard,” Rose said.

    That means a lower hourly wage with all tips pooled and paid to food servers.

    The restaurant is planning a grand reopening event next week. The couple has invited the public to RSVP to the event. It’s a strategy that has garnered so much interest that Rose told me that next Tuesday’s grand reopening event will be expanded to a weeklong affair.

    “The grand reopening allows the marketplace, which will ultimately decide this restaurant’s fate, to decide for themselves whether it should stay open or not,”
    he told me.

    Having already received 1,200 RSVP emails, it’s “a good, early indication people want to check it out, give it a try,” he said.

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    May 17, 2013 2:06 AM GMT
    [aaliyah]"Dust yourself off, and try again, try again..."[/aaliyah]

    http://www.bizjournals.com/phoenix/news/2013/05/15/amys-baking-co-creates-new-facebook.html

    Phoenix Business JournalAmy’s Baking Company Bakery Boutique and Bistro in Scottsdale apparently started a new Facebook page this morning after scathing comments and reported hacking issues caused problems after Friday night’s “Kitchen Nightmares” show...

    Despite the new Facebook page, the same vitriolic comments are filling it.

    Those posting to the page, who appear to be the owners, are still fighting back.

    “That’s it I’m done with this s**t for today,” read the most recent post, apparently from the restaurant owners. “Screw all of you Red-s**ts, Yelpers, bloggers and hackers. I’m going home to have a nice martini and a nice long bath. This is absolutely ridiculous and pathetic how immature everyone is.”
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    Aug 20, 2015 4:05 PM GMT
    I saw the "ARIZONA, she's lost her way!" thread and couldn't help wondering if the Queen and King of Scottsdale at Amy's Baking Company was still rolling in dough.

    Well, it took a minute, BUT...

    Phoenix New TimesAmy's Baking Company, the Scottsdale restaurant made famous by its appearance on Kitchen Nightmares in 2013, will close its doors for good, according to a report by the Associated Press. Reportedly, owners Amy and Samy Bouzaglo are in final negotiations for the sale of the restaurant, which is located at 7366 East Shea Boulevard.


    Alas, just like all horror flicks, the main antagonists aren't going away completely...

    Phoenix New TimesBut Amy and Samy aren't done yet. The couple will keep the Amy's Baking Company name and plan to sell desserts online, including to a local restaurant group. They also plan to build a commissary in Gold Canyon for the new business, and will start a video-based online cooking school.

    The owners tell the AP that the closure of the restaurant has nothing to do with the drama that's resulted from their appearance on the show. The couple has had issues with the previous landlord of the Scottsdale strip mall where their restaurant is located, including complaints about a bad smell.


    Something sure smelled, alright! icon_twisted.gif

    http://www.phoenixnewtimes.com/restaurants/amys-baking-company-in-scottsdale-to-close-owners-will-open-online-cooking-school-7478866

    http://www.yelp.com/biz/amys-baking-company-scottsdale