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Bar Rescue

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That was seriously one of the most fucked-up places this show has been to. Can you imagine walking into a bar like that? With skeevy guys drinking for free, bartenders dancing on the pole for tips and shrieking when they get kicked out for being drunk? Whoa.

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Despite Taffer trying to distance the bar from the university and the college crowd, the rebranding made me think of one of that school's most famous alums. (As in, can you smell what the rocks are cooking?)

 

I'm also convinced Taffer ate the co-owner's baby. He's holding the kid one moment, and then we never see or hear from him again.

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It irritates me the way Taffer always goes after bar owners for not treating their employees with respect, but then he refers to female employees as "girls."  

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15% increase in sales doesn't seem too impressive for that much of a change. Kudos for a good idea to work with the castle, though.

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Let there be light!

I didn't think this episode was strong enough to warrant a re-do. Just kept thinking how many bars would probably love to have Taffer visit once and he's wasting his time on someone who's not appreciative.

Even the employees didn't think it warranted a re-do. I think this bar was selected because there's an excuse to have bare booty-cheeks & cleavage out all episode. Really?! Even when they were cleaning the super gross fruit fly worms out of the beer tap the girls were half naked. Hey, I get it. The girls have beautiful bodies & this is a free country. But, as a woman I just kept thinking I would be cold.

I guess we now know about how much is budgeted to redo each bar. Good to know.

I thought it was kinda bogus how little time Jon Taffer gave the owner to come up with $30,000. Even with a more reasonable amount of time, dude probably still would have bailed, but nevertheless....

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This episode was unique because the CO2 & N pressure tanks were in-op---thus no draft beer at all.

The buttermilk-brined wings looked delicious!

For the one gentleman to have the humility to step down from a position of power for the good of the company? Just, wow! It makes me root for them.

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I was surprised that they took this one on, given the big bucks needed.  Then again, they needed a SoCal location to get Maria involved in another ep.

 

No way was the transformative message fully received.  The uncle was still the face of the place.  

 

So, customers pouring for themselves?  Is that even legal in California?  Even if it is, how on earth does that lead to less over-serving, as Taffer stated????  Who the heck stops them from pouring more - especially if a place is packed????

 

If you believe that they ran an operational profit, let alone even sniffed break-even in the months following the rescue, I've got some tree groves in West Hollywood to sell you dirt cheap.  I saw some of the most brutal online reviews of this place from well after the taping.

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Post-renovation reviews are NOT good.  A summary from barrescueupdates.com:

 

"This is probably the most negatively reviewed bar I have seen after a Bar Rescue makeover and there are a ton of negative 1-star reviews.  Some of the complaints include terrible service, terrible food, and being out of a lot of beers on tap.  The bar also seemed to be doing a bait and switch with offering a 15% off deal on Yelp, then not honoring it because they changed names from Los Angeles Brewing Company to LA Brew Co., which angered a lot of people."

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I was surprised at the end of the episode when the end credits stated that sales had only grown 20-30% since the rescue.  You'd think that with those extensive changes, sales should have doubled.  I liked the family and was really rooting for them to succeed.  Unlike many episodes, these people seemed genuinely nice, but in over their heads.  Most people "rescued" on this show are complete jerks.

 

I think the uncle should go back to running the glass company and let some professional managers run the bar.  Getting out of $1,000,000 of debt is a tall order, and I don't think any of the family members (completely untrained) are up to the task.

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I'm always amazed by how many people on this show continue to work in a place where the boss screams at them, treats them like dirt, falls behind on paychecks, runs a business so badly that tips are non-existent, and yet, they never consider quitting.  Sami, the manager, hadn't been paid in 5 years!  He and his girlfriend, the waitress, lived with her parents since they had no money.  

 

Sami, QUIT!  You work in a bar; you can find work in another bar that actually pays you money.  You could be the dishwasher in another bar and make more money than you're making now.  You could actually work ANYWHERE, doing ANYTHING, and make more money than the $0/year you're making now.  QUIT!!!!!

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I always find myself wondering what the people ARE getting out of working somewhere like that for so many hours without getting paid. Overly invested in the dream?  Free drinks?  Doesn't "feel" like work?  (perhaps because they're there all the time but not getting paid...)  I just don't understand it.

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I must admit I never quite understand the sales numbers at the end. It seems like they re-do the bar, spend $100k on upgrades, change the name, put in a new menu and new drinks, and sales just barely increase. I wonder if they end up with more of an increase from the episode airing than they do from the makeovers?

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Piratz Tavern is closing up shop.

 


The owner's frustration stems, in part, from her own fateful decision in early 2012, when she and her husband, Juciano, did something very un-pirate: They asked for help to rescue Piratz Tavern, where the sharks were circling. The couple requested a makeover from Spike TV's "Bar Rescue" and its host Jon Taffer, who's something of a one-eyed swashbuckler himself.  Tracy and Juciano hoped Taffer would plug the holes of their listing ship and save it from a rendezvous with Davy Jones' Locker.

Taffer and his crew had other ideas. They crunched the numbers on Silver Spring and noticed the city was flush with more than 200,000 worker bees, who quickly fled the area when their shifts were done. Taffer wanted to intercept them on their way home. So, in a 36-hour makeover, he transformed a pirate pub into, ahem, the Corporate Bar and Grill. Its logo was a faceless, clean-cut businessman in a suit and tie. The place featured "While You Were (Out)" notepads on the table. It had all the soul of a cubicle.

 

It is certainly one of the more famous 'rescues' of the series.

 

And of course, from the article, it sounds like Spike isn't missing the opportunity. By 'coincidence' I'm sure, they're airing the original episode the day after it shuts down, as well as a revisiting clip show that swung by the tavern again apparently. (Then again Spike repeats the episodes so often, any given week you're likely to find it air).

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Wow, those sister would have driven me crazy!  I loved the scene where they were all bickering and Jon Taffer just pulls up a stool and waits..... and waits..... and waits for them to finish.  I think he'd have rather been physically threatened by a drunk motorcycle gang member or a a toothless old hillbilly bar owner than sit there and listen to those 4 sisters argue for who knows how long!  You could kind of see the gears turning in Jon's head as he sat there, "Maybe I SHOULD have looked into the insurance business after college, rather than this bar thing.....".

 

If any one of the sisters seemed to know what she was talking about, it would have been okay, but they all seemed completely clueless.  They just kept going around and around in circles.  What on earth possessed them to go into business together without any kind of plan upfront?

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I didn't understand why they wouldn't just let the one sister who knew how to bartend and really, really wanted to replace one of the bartenders. They could have saved a salary. It's not as if any of them were going to be half-decent managers.

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Maybe it's because I have spent too much time in DC, but "Patriot House" screamed "Tea Party" to me and I thought that was a poor choice for San Francisco. Concept OK, just the name was bad.

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I think this would have been an interesting candidate for a re-rescue show like the OC bikini bar got a couple months ago - Second Base, I think? And one of Taffer's more recent concepts would have done well there - the Corporate Bar & Grill concept was terrible.

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Ktwo I agree, I thought there was something way wrong about the name. I actually didn't care for the concept either, but then again I've never worked in an office building that included a bar and drinking at lunch, so, maybe I'm just not their target audience.

 

Julia, agree with you too, I kept thinking if she wants to bartend and she's good at it, let her bartend for goodness sake.

 

I had to fast forward through them screaming at/over each other. So irritating.

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Not a big surprise there. I think the problem with a re-rescue is they were just way too determined to stay the way they were and didn't care very much if that failed.

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It's interesting that those 4 women preferred an American theme as opposed to an Irish pub. You would have thought that would be a natural fit, serving Guinness and Shepard's Pie. And make more sense than a "Patriot" theme in the City. 

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I don't understand the colonial theme at all. If they wanted to reflect that period in San Francisco, they should have been serving spanish food.

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I don't understand the colonial theme at all. If they wanted to reflect that period in San Francisco, they should have been serving spanish food.

 

Hmm maybe that was my biggest issue with the place. I'm not so keen on the whole "bar in an office building" to begin with, but I could see the patriot theme working out way better in say Boston as kind of a touristy thing. It seemed really misplaced.

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Not a big surprise there. I think the problem with a re-rescue is they were just way too determined to stay the way they were and didn't care very much if that failed.

They were too wedded to the way it was. It tells you that their home lives must have been a mess. They prioritized a failing business where they were barely making money because they felt accepted and loved at the bar.

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I saw the YouTube video Piratz posted when they burned the sign, complete with a "shanty" about how much Taffer sucks and how very clever they were (and so did Taffer, who talked to the press at the time). So, he was at least being super disengenuous about the timeline, they're at least being super disengenuous about being the innocent victims of people on the internet who mysteriously targeted them, and both of them were being super disengenuous about why and how Piratz was back on the show.

Taffer wanted to gloat, and the owners wanted to be on TV (which is why Juicy the proud rebel signed a release and let them bring cameras in). No-one to root for there.

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This establishment was disgustingly filthy & all of the employees (except the one guy) were super lazy.

No pride. No work ethic. No shame.

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Piratz Tavern is closing up shop.

 

And of course, from the article, it sounds like Spike isn't missing the opportunity. By 'coincidence' I'm sure, they're airing the original episode the day after it shuts down, as well as a revisiting clip show that swung by the tavern again apparently. (Then again Spike repeats the episodes so often, any given week you're likely to find it air).

Ohhh, is THAT why they played that ep last night?

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I like the follow-up episodes.  Nice to see the success story in the bar that was Characters.  Taffer seems to have become more pro-theme bar since Piratz was "rescued" with the steampunk and zombie bars.  It would be interesting to see what he'd do with his current mindset without the past baggage.  On the other hand, Tracy & Juicy seem pretty set in their ways.  Their bar could be turned into Disneyland's Blue Bayou and they'd probably still want to go back to grog & burning bits.

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I think Tracy and Juicy should have been running a destination RPG resort, where no-one would have to drive anywhere after grog and they'd have a captive audience for the food and an excuse to do piratey things. 

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I thought the one they showed/rescued last night was interesting. It's in an area where a lot of my former co-workers lived and worked, and they would have loved that place after the remodel. (I worked remotely in another city).  I was really wondering how they made the windows look like that for 38th floor and kept wishing they'd give more info, but I thought they were very cool.

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The situation with the fruit flies was nasty! At first, I thought they were flying around & landing in people's drinks. Bad enough. But, no! There were countless dead fruit flies floating in the liquor bottle! None of the bartenders noticed (or gave a shit) & just kept making people's drinks with that?!? Are you kidding me?! I was thrilled Tafer made the owner drink a shot of fruit-fly-cohol. But the slack bartenders should have had to drink it, too.

Also, I was embarrassed for the pretty bartender who got put in her place, but she deserved it. She was questioning the drink expert & trying to justify her lack of technique by saying she is the highest earner. Um, sweetie...you have a beautiful face & serious cleavage (I'm not mad at her, I'm just saying) & a nice personality---you're gonna get mad tips. But that doesn't mean you know what you are doing.

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Just gross!  I can see if the guy rented/loaned out the bar for a porn shoot when the place closed, or off hours.  But WHILE THEY WERE OPEN?!?!?

 

And there's no way that kid "sobered up" for keeps.  As soon as Taffer pulled out of the parking lot I am sure he started partying again and his dad continued to cover his ass. I'm tired of these rescue shows helping idiots who have no business being in the food/beverage industry.

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I don't think that kid had enough time to drink himself that stupid. I think he most likely was that stupid to begin with, and this was the only way for his dad to get him a steady job. But hey, way to make the incompetent drunk the problem and not the guy who used his investment to hand the keys to the incompetent drunk.

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Taffer is pretty adept at finding specific porn clips.  That kid seemed just as dumb sober as he did drunk.  The remodel didn't seem inspired as usual either though he didn't spare on the 'butt-funnels'.

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Way too many butt funnels for my taste.  Actually just one is too many for me.

 

The stupid drunk was a problem, but he wasn't the only problem, because the other owners allowed it to happen.

 

If I had known that a porno was shot in that bar (and during business hours!) I would never go back, even after the remodeling.

Edited by Evolution101
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Holy crap.  Why would anyone put up with the bad behavior those two young girls were exhibiting, both at  home and in the bar?

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Considering Wynter lives with the owner, I'm guessing the chances are high that she was quickly re-hired after Taffer left.

Edited by Art Vandelay

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I figure every show where they claim that, the people are earning something - whether in tips or cash under the table - and declaring nothing in their tax returns so they have to say zero on TV. They're probably grossly underpaid but not getting absolutely nothing.

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Yes that was kind of odd about the girls living with them, especially since it seemed they were already on shaky ground to begin with. 

 

And I agree, I bet Wynter was back the very next day - although out of curiosity I found her Facebook and it says she works at Chili's and moved to Sacramento, so... maybe not.

 

I thought the place looked a lot nicer afterwards, and I liked the new name, but I always think it's odd when a place describes itself as "A Great" this or "The Best" that.  SHOW me, don't tell me. It did seem like a pretty good improvement overall, though.

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I feel like this show is really, really staged. The switch from degenerate drunk so lost to reason that they're bombed and stealing from the register in front of a camera crew (often with bonus "slutty" behavior) to the contrite, reasonable people buckling down or giving calm departure interviews about how they understand that they've let their friend down is just too stark.

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The best thing Jon did in this episode was come up with all the checklists for the owner/former pilot.  You could tell that things started to click into place in his mind when Jon started reviewing them with him.

 

The girlfriend was totally using and abusing the owner, yet SHE was the one who got mad when he finally cut her loose.  Trying to play the sympathy card really wasn't working for her.  She still gets her 40%, though, right?

 

Nellie may be a decent guy, but what a terrible bartender!  Also, couldn't his Mom do a better job dressing him?  His giant flourescent yellow shirt was made for a man twice his weight.

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Nellie may be a decent guy, but what a terrible bartender!  Also, couldn't his Mom do a better job dressing him?  His giant flourescent yellow shirt was made for a man twice his weight.

 

What is it with those two guys?  The owner wore the same grubby sweater/sweatshirt/whatever that was for the WHOLE SHOW, until the very end!  I was so glad to see them both at the reopening with their hair combed and wearing presentable clothes.

 

They didn't really address whether Maria was still legally entitled to 40% of the bar's income, i.e., whether or not there was a written contract, but I'll bet their is.  She was just a low-life user.

 

P.S.  "Money Bar?"  Stupid name.  Evidently the owners thought so, too, as they've gone back to Murphy's Law.

Edited by Puffaroo

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I didn't like the Money Bar name either.  Surely Taffer could've come up with something better than that.

 

The ex-pilot was so pathetic, and stupid for giving his ex-girlfriend 40% of the business and not making her put any money in.

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