Welcome to the new Independent website. We hope you enjoy it and we value your feedback. Please contact us here.


BOB PAYTON, the bombastic American restaurateur who died in a car accident 10 days ago, will live again on television as co-presenter of two one-hour programmes marking the end of The Restaurant Show series on ITV. 'Bruce and Bob Eat America' chronicles the exploits of two big hungry boys as they visit two dozen restaurants in four cities.

Bruce Burgess first met Bob at a Restaurant Show interview over lunch at Quaglino's. Payton spent the meal comparing the place unfavourably with his own establishment, The Criterion, and saying how much better the service is in the US. 'Bob was on a mission to persuade the British how great America is,' says Bruce. 'So I said, show me.'

First, Bruce had to become accustomed to Bob's little ways. The only vehicle he would ride in was a Range Rover and he required a constant supply of Diet Coke. On aeroplanes, he spent his time working on a laptop computer, designing graphics for a rotisserie chicken concept.

In Chicago, Bob's adopted home town, the pair visited Hooters, a sports bar staffed by well-endowed women, and Lou Mitchell's, which allegedly produces the country's most famous breakfast. But Bob's favourite place was Al's Italian Beef, on the street where Al Capone was born. Bruce couldn't help but notice that all the staff wore guns.