Amy's Baking Company Grand Re-Opening Event in Scottsdale, 5/21/13 (Video)
Plenty of Amy-watchers but not a lot to see at the Amy's Baking Company "grand" re-opening
Editor's Note: This post has been edited from its original version.
There were plenty of spectators outside Amy's Baking Company in Scottsdale on Tuesday night. Dozens of people and cars lingered in the parking lot, keeping a safe distance from the infamous restaurant and its owners, waiting for emotional fireworks at the restaurant's anticipated grand re-opening event.
"I just figured, it's on the way home, I'll stop by," said Justin Keefer who hung around for about a half an hour and snapped a couple photos before leaving.
The mood was tense -- probably due to the half-dozen security guards and police officers that spent the evening shooing away news crews, photographers, rubberneckers, and crowds of rowdy teens.
But for better or worse, things inside the restaurant appeared to carry on relatively calmly for the dinner service, which began shortly after 5 p.m.
Prior to the doors' opening, a handful of guests gathered in the plaza outside the restaurant. Hostesses and security guards informed those without reservations that walk-ins would not be accepted for the evening but gave out business cards and invited people to e-mail the restaurant to set up a reservation for later in the week.
Lisa Shock, a pastry chef, was one such visitor. She said she had once interviewed for a job at the restaurant but wasn't hired, even though she said she's a certified pastry chef and former culinary school instructor.
She stuck it out for over two hours and even bought a bag of popcorn from the movie theater across the way. It would have been a perfect setup, but the show she was hoping for never came.
See our video, with interviews from the scene on the next page.
Leftovers of a meatball pizza and panini from Amy's Baking Company
Through the tinted restaurant windows and line of security guards, guests could be seen enjoying their meals in the partially full restaurant as Samy Bouzaglo smiled and conversed -- even posed for photos -- with guests.
Rick Potts and Sheryl Hugill were some of the first people seated for the dinner service and had nothing but good things to say when they left the restaurant about 90 minutes later.
"I can't complain," said Potts, who also live-tweeted the experience. "The food was awesome."
The couple said they ate the meatball pizza, a panini, and the hummus appetizer, all of which they enjoyed. Though they said the servers were obviously nervous, their experience was good and Samy was "obviously working the room."
They said they asked to meet Amy, but were told she was too busy to leave the kitchen.
"I 100 percent think it's a publicity stunt," Potts said of the whole fiasco. "And it's working."
"I wanted it to be crazy," he added. But also said that for about $30 a couple, he would definitely come back to Amy's Baking Company.
Other Amy-watchers, those with no reservations but plenty of curiosity, passed the hours speculating about whether guests were really family members and friends, personally invited by the Bouzaglos.
Pass the popcorn -- there's no way this show is over yet.
Get the Dining Newsletter
The week's top local food news and events, plus interviews with chefs and restaurant owners, dining tips, and a peek at our print review.