Owners of Redlands restaurant Mill Creek Cattle Company, Lisette and Steve Brown, thought all hope was lost after discovering a blip in their building’s design. Their eligibility to be on The Food Network’s “Restaurant: Impossible” was on the line, as there was only one exit door and a blank wall where another door should have been, according to fire code.
“When ‘Restaurant: Impossible’ called us, they said they would be coming in on Monday,” Lisette Brown recalled of that December week. “At the time, we only had one exit door with 68 seats, instead of 45. I didn’t want to pull out all of those seats by myself, so I contacted M-Tech Glass (out of Moreno Valley) to put in another door.
“We contacted M-Tech Glass because it was on a Friday and the other companies we contacted said they could not put in another door until a week or two weeks later. It would have cost us thousands of dollars.”
Jeff Mitchell, chief executive officer of M-Tech, recalls the day.
“I got a random call from the owner, Lisette, and she said she had called at least five or six other glass companies and at least three of those companies suggested that they call me,” says Mitchell. “At first, I was not sure how to help her because we weren’t sure if we had a door at all.” As it turns out, Mitchell had just the right doors the job called for. “So, my son and I left and saw Lisette that Friday.”
The Browns paid for the majority of the materials, and M-Tech sold them the doors at cost while doing the installation for free.
“She was really lucky we had that door because we would not have been able to help,” says Mitchell. “We were doing her a favor because we felt sorry for her and wanted to help her.”
While M-Tech donated the labor, it did receive some inadvertent—and well-deserved—free advertising. Mitchell also got a free bite to eat.
“We were on the show for at least four times, even though we were kind of in the way,” says Mitchell, who was at the restaurant during filming. “We wore our M-Tech Glass t-shirts.”
The job got done in time, and British chef Robert Irvine and his production crew arrived days later to complete the 48-hour makeover “Restaurant: Impossible” consists of. That makeover, however, may have never occurred if it weren’t for the one M-Tech Glass had also provided, just days before.