On tonight’s Spike “Bar Rescue,” Jon Taffer and his crew came to Tampa, Florida, on this episode titled, “Paradise Lost.” In 2011, long-time movie theater owners, Howard Edelman and Gonen Minuskin purchased a theater and attached bar named Dale 1891. Howard agreed to bring in his son Scott Edelman to run the day to day operations and after his wife’s cancer episode, he invested $80,000 into the business. As Scott ran the business, his two partners left him to the bar as they devoted more of their time to the movie theater. As the bar business started failing, Howard helped bail out his son until it became out of control. The bar loses $5,000 a month and owes $50,000 in back taxes. So all three partners agreed to bust open the books and put in a call to Jon Taffer and “Bar Rescue.”
As Jon sat in the movie theater with mixologist Daniel Ponsky and Kevin Bludso, famed barbeque chef as they watched what happens in the bar with the strange name that offers no identity as to what goes on there. He sent in a local couple to do recon for him as they observed what went on. Burt the bartender was friendly and when they ordered food, he left to get it from the theater. By the time he returned, it was barely warm, but after they paid for their food, Scott and Stephanie presented hot dogs and hamburgers for all to have that they cooked outside. Suddenly, a loud partner meeting took place in the bar as customers were having drinks. Jon decided to go in and get involved. He asked how much they were losing a month, and Scott admitted that it was the rent of $5,000. Jon asked him business questions of which he could not answer. He actually had no idea of his basic costs.
Jon demanded that the two major owners change the lock and do not let Scott back in until he returns tomorrow. When Jon saw the expenses for the bar, he was appalled. There were expenses for rental cars, golfing, dinners at a country club and more that Scott charged to the business without consent from the other partners.
Before making the final decision, Jon went ahead with the stress test for that evening and immediately began the training. Scott better prove himself as a capable manager or Jon will walk away. Daniel took over the bar and Kevin and Stephanie worked in the kitchen that was hardly used. When the stress test, or as Jon called it, a survival test began, broken glass was in the ice, and Scott had to remove it, but it was a disaster. As food sat in the window, and the bell was rung several times, people waited for drinks and food, and it was evident that Scott had no game plan. Suddenly, he started working like he meant it, cleaning glasses, making drinks, serving food and acting like a manager. The three partners met, and Scott revealed that he turned the books over to his father and Gonen. He truly wants the business to work.
When the renovations were completed, Jon revealed the new name; Cayman Cove. The exterior had an inviting makeover and the interior took a piece from the tiki bar outside and converted it to an island setting. Rum was the theme of the drinks, and the food had a Caribbean flair. All three partners were now happy and anxious to pay off their debts and turn a profit, thanks to Jon and his crew on this episode of “Bar Rescue.”
Six weeks after the relaunch, the sales are up over fifteen percent, the bar is paying its rent on its own, and all three partners are happy once again.