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"Next Great Restaurant" Winner


8/3/2011 12:10 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF

His restaurants failed miserably just two months after opening their doors -- and now, the winner of "America's Next Great Restaurant" is blaming the entire culinary disaster ... on Chipotle.

Jamawn Woods tells TMZ, Chipotle -- an investor in the NBC reality show -- was supposed to provide a management team to run his three Soul Daddy restaurants for one year ... but they really screwed the pooch.

According to Jamawn, Chipotle hired a bum management team with NO experience cooking soul food OR running a soul food restaurant -- and his restaurants tanked as a result ... closing soon after.

J hasn't filed any legal papers yet -- but he's telling friends ... the show owes him $46,000 for a year's worth of salary ... and still hasn't paid a dime.

A rep for Chipotle tells TMZ, "The Soul Daddy restaurants were generating significant negative cash flows and, after a careful review of the business, the investor group made the decision to close the restaurants."

But there's a light at the end of the tunnel -- sources tell TMZ, Jamawn and Chipotle are currently hammering out a settlement deal.


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1180 days ago


Those idiots should have picked spice coast. Soul daddy sucked!!

1180 days ago


Cry me a river... does he want some cheese with that whine?

1180 days ago


I'm still laughing at the so called: "Expert Judges", I hope they never get a gig again on a major network as an expert cooking judge!

1180 days ago

john wayne gacy    

ain't nothing but grits & spits;

1180 days ago

john wayne gacy    

aint' nithin but grits & spits ......

1180 days ago


Let's see... You hire a MEXICAN food CHAIN to "manage" SOUL FOOD restaraunts, and wonder why it didn't work out? What IDIOT signed off on that?

1179 days ago


Let's see...judging by the number of people who've heard or eaten at Chipotle - they pretty much know what they're doing. The fact that they couldn't turn your slop into something marketable was due to the fact that it just wasn't good food.

1179 days ago

Genghis Khan    

Considering how successful Chipotle seems to be I doubt it was their "management" that caused the failure. Still seems shocking that they pulled the plug after only 2 months. I thought the model in the restaurant biz was hope to break even with cash flow after 2 years.

That being said I was surprised he won anyways. Nothing on the menu that would've made me want to go there.

1179 days ago


I'm not surprised. if you watched the show, you could see that Steve Ells, the creator of Chipotle was a swarmy, creepy guy who thought he was way above everyone else on there. After booting off the person who had the "wok" idea, turns out he's now looking to start a new chain doing exactly that. I hope this guy from Soul Daddy gets the money he deserves. After watching that show, I can't stand Chipotle.

1179 days ago


Boo effin' hoo. You wouldn't have succeeded no matter what. Grow some big boy undies and suck it up.

1179 days ago


Just another example of the white man making promises to a minority and then screwing him over. Typical.

1179 days ago


Oh wah, wah, wah! NO white folk wanted yer 'chicken n waffles' and the black community wouldn't support you. Cry me a river!

1179 days ago


so stupid and unfair to think that because of the TV show any restaurant would be an instant success - the overestimated the power of their reality show and that wasn't Woods fault-yet they are penalizing him it appears

they should have at least allowed him the full year so that they could improve and maybe make small changes to make the concept better work in each individual area

it is a recession after all and investors should be prepared to lose money- not only make a profit
but it seems like the fine print with these investors allows them to pull the plug at the first sign of it not being an overnight success

if they would have picked the 3 cities after they chose the winner and not before (since some concepts work better in specific geographic regions) it would have had a better chance of opening in 3 southern cities and after they became successful, then branch out across the country

so I feel bad for Woods
and hope he owns the name - not the show or investors so that he can open a smaller place in a more appropirate city and have success
...he got a raw deal in my mind...

1179 days ago


typical...blame everyone else. Maybe nobody wants your stinkly greasy food, ever think about that??? Who eats pigs feet and greens? Not anyone with MONEY

1179 days ago
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