Back to the Bar: The Luck of the Irish
During this Bar Rescue “Back to the Bar” special Jon Taffer revisited Bungalow Bar, Campbell’s Irish Bar, and The Lister, home of the infamous Porn Couch. Gerry Graham was behind the bar pouring the most famous of the Bar Rescue cocktails, the Resurrection. The cocktail is, as Jon put it, marketing in a glass. Vic Vegas was on hand and made candied bacon from Bacon Bar in Las Vegas. As always, PJ King, the voice of Bar Rescue, and DJ Blue Steel, Mr. All-In himself, were in attendance.
First up was Campbell’s Irish Pub. Formerly Packy’s, this Irish pub was chaotic at best. The branding was all wrong and didn’t communicate that it was an Irish bar, the food wasn’t Irish, and the owner had lost his passion for the business. His friend Guppy wasn’t helping things, drinking on the job and costing the bar $8000 per month in lost sales. Jon renovated the bar, turning it into an authentic Irish pub and a place guests would be happy to stay for hours on end. Guppy said the bar is doing well and Jon declared Campbell’s a success.
The Lister was up next. Regular viewers probably remember that this bar features Jon’s first-ever Triple Butt Funnel. Angelo was ousted as bar manager before Jon left but has since returned to manage the bar. Receiving no support and running the bar on his own, Angelo has not made wise decisions since Jon left. Gone is the branding and the posters that communicated Jon’s concept, the dancefloor is now occupied by a ping pong table, and the bar’s patio has been turned into a very cheap outdoor hookah tent. Angelo doesn’t like the name The Lister, nor does he think Jon knows what he’s doing. He also admitted to only giving Jon’s branding a chance for one to two weeks before making detrimental changes. And in case anyone has been wondering, the Porn Couch is back and located in The Lister’s basement. Because of Angelo’s poor decisions, Jon declared The Lister an “astonishing” failure. The one silver lining is that Angelo has remained sober when behind the bar.
The Lister's infamous Porn Couch.
Bungalow Bar was decimated by Hurricane Sandy. The dining room was split in half and the deck was destroyed. The owners put about $250,000 of their own money into repairing Bungalow Bar, and when the renovation stalled the owners – all brothers – turned on one another. Jon reshuffled the owners’ positions and responsibilities, got construction back on track, and brought the bar back from the dead with his first 5-day remodel. He also said that because of a looming storm he wasn’t sure the remodel would be finished by the deadline.
Jon’s wife Nicole went to the Bungalow Bar to check on how it’s doing. She ordered some of the signature food and a cocktail, which she discovered were great. Some viewers may remember the argument that broke out over hard versus soft taco shells. Well, the soft shells won out and the tacos are one of the best sellers. Bungalow Bar is, according to Nicole, just as Jon left it. The bar itself is seeing a 20% increase in sales and the entire community benefits. Bungalow Bar is in the top three of Bar Rescue success stories, along with Spirits on Bourbon and Moonrunners. The bar is a complete success.
Top 5 Taffer Health Hazards
- #5 Turtle Bay gumbo.
- #4 Archie’s Lounge cooking utensils.
- #3 MT Bottle natural spring.
- #2 O’Banion’s grease trap.
- #1 Fairways walk-in.