Tuesday, February 25, 2020

South Boulevard (SoBo) - 24 Hours to Hell and Back Update

On tonight's 2-hour season finale of 24 Hours to Hell and Back, Gordon Ramsay is in Little Rock, Arkansas to try to save South Boulevard.  South Boulevard is also known as SoBo and serves fusion dishes such as Korean bbq, steaks and sushi.  The restaurant just opened in April 2019 and the owner is having problems taking charge of the restaurant.  Gordon Ramsay also finds food in the kitchen that is rotten and should not be served to customers.

Let's take a look at some information, reviews, and updates for South Boulevard since 24 Hours to Hell and Back and Gordon Ramsay made all of the changes to the restaurant (note - all reviews are post-makeover).

Positive Reviews:

  • "This was our first time dining at South Boulevard Restaurant in Maumelle, Arkansas. We both decided to sample their Bulgogi. When I was in the Army I was stationed at Camp Casey, 2nd Infantry Division just north of Seoul, South Korea. At least once a week there I would eat Bulgogi at the Officer's Club. Tonight's Bulgogi at SoBo was hands down the best that I have eaten outside of Korea. Friendly staff. Excellent service. Reasonable prices. Highly recommended. Give it a try. I don't think you'll be disappointed"
  • "Our first time at SoBo; we had a wonderful experience. We were looking for something different to try for my little one's 4th birthday. The food and waitstaff were great. My 4 year old veered from his standard choice of chicken/kid's menu and ordered an appetizer- catfish sliders with Asian slaw held/on the side. He ate everything! While we were waiting on our entrees the owner brought samples of the Bulgogi, which had an excellent flavor and was tender and moist - we decided to then order it an an extra entree to "table share".The chicken was good as was the cheeseburger. I had sushi: "Red Dragon Roll" which was outstanding. I eat sushi often and this roll was ginormous and very fresh.
  • "It's a sushi restaurant now, which is fine, we just didn't know. The sushi was excellent. There are only 3 entrees on the menu, all were decently tasty. There was no one in there on a Saturday night but that will probably change once the episode airs. Overall pretty decent"
  • "Great food, personable wait staff, drinks ran empty, looking forward to expanded menu"
  • "The Sobo after the makeover is pretty inside. The menu is very limited unless you're there for sushi. I had the grilled flank steak. It was cooked like I ordered and it tasted great. My husband had the pulled pork sandwich. It was a little overly saucy but had a great flavor. The menu items all have an Asian flare. We'll have to come back to check out their sushi."
  • "My Mom, sister, and I got reservations the night they reopened after the remodel and menu update and oh. My God. The food is hands down the best, they only have 7 items on the menu, but all of them are unique and fabulous! My Mom got the pulled pork sandwich with fries. My sister got the grilled flank steak, and I got the soy marinated chicken with kimchi fried rice. We ordered the black sesame donuts with chocolate as well, and every single bit was amazing. The kimchi fried rice had seaweed in it, which makes an unbelievable difference, and it was divine! Definitely going back, and taking all my friends!"

Negative Reviews:

  • "Thought we'd stop in and try the place since Chef Ramsey had been here. The place is beautifully decorated and the food looks amazing when it comes out. The taste was pretty good, however, it took over thirty minutes to get our food not to mention, they weren't serving any beer and didn't have any wings that were on the menu but they didn't have any to serve. We ordered rice to go and it took another thirty minutes to get that order. Again, what we ate was good, but timely."
  • "This place is was not great. The inside is very nice but the food is just ok. The biggest problem they have is the kitchen/timeliness. We got there at 5:30 pm. We immediately were helped to our table and placed our orders after about 15 mins. We have small kids so it takes a little while for us to get settled (bathroom stops, coloring, etc). They brought out the kids meal missing the fries because they didn’t have fresh cut fries ready to go. I’m like really!! Waitress told us they were cutting the fries and they be out a little later but didn’t want the kids to have to wait. We were one of three tables. They open at 5pm. So basically the kitchen was not prepared for dinner service. I did appreciate the waitress bringing the kids meals w/o the fries because it was like 15 more minutes bf they were came out. Then they bring out my sushi roll but not my husbands burger. Just his fries. They say your burger will be out in a few minutes. We get the burger like 10 mins later and it is not the right burger!!! He got the burger without kimchi because he hates it. So what does he get... the kimchi burger. By this time it’s 6:30 and my husband just tells the waitress he got the wrong burger and does not want it to be fixed because we don’t have time to wait another god knows how long for it. We have to get home to do homework and get the kids to bed. I gave two stars because the waitress was nice. The sushi was just ok. Nothing special."
  • "It took 45 to get our appetizer. Watched tables walk out cause no one was serving them"
*Reviews from Yelp, Google

Other News and Links:

  • The 24 Hours to Hell and Back makeover happened in November 2019.
  • The restaurant opened in April 2019, so it was only open for about 7 months before the makeover.
  • Here is the Facebook page for South Boulevard. 
  • Here is a link to the menu for South Boulevard which has their normal menu and sushi menu.
  • In a local news article, Jermaine said he is happy with the experience and that he was contacted by the show out of the blue.  Jermaine said they are still adjusting to new hours and they will continue to add food items to the menu.
  • South Boulevard closed the weekend before their episode aired to prepare for a full restaurant during the show.  They said on Facebook, "We are so pumped and excited for our show to air this Tuesday. Unfortunately, due to the high demand for reservations for our watch party, we are allowing extra time off for staff and training to better-prepare ourselves for what’s to come! See you guys after the weekend! Our sincere apologies for being closed these few days."
  • Here are the reviews for South Boulevard/SoBo from Yelp and Google.
    • The reviews before the makeover were also very positive, although there weren't too many since it is a newer restaurant.
  • Owner Jermaine Burton also owns another restaurant called Lucky's Sports Bar & Grill. Here is Lucky's Facebook page and Yelp reviews.
    • They are having a watch party at Lucky's Sports Bar & Grill as well. (Link)
  • South Boulevard offers multiple Groupon deals which are currently 40-45% off food. (Link)
    • They also run a lot of promotions on their Facebook page, Restaurant.com, Yelp, and on the back of Kroger receipts.


The reviews for South Boulevard (SoBo) since Gordon Ramsay and 24 Hours to Hell and Back did the makeover have been mostly positive.  People seem to love the food and think the prices are reasonable.  The few negative reviews all deal with service and long wait times to get food.  Owner Jermaine Burton said the show was the one that contacted him and he also owns another restaurant called Lucky's.  He also said he is happy with the makeover and the experience.

UPDATE - Southern Boulevard (SoBo) has closed - More information on the closure.

*To see how the restaurants from 24 Hours to Hell and Back are doing, visit the 24 Hours To Hell and Back Updates Page. Also, if you are interested in the restaurants from Kitchen Nightmares, visit the Kitchen Nightmares Updates Page.

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