In last night’s Spike episode of “Bar Rescue” creator Jon Taffer went to Austin, Texas, to rescue “Headhunters,” a grotesque bar with questionable habits.
In this episode, Jon comes to the rescue of “Headhunters,” in the music hub of Texas, but this bar is ready to go belly up. Can Jon Taffer and his crew save this oddball place from itself and its owner?
Jon sends in his wife, Nicole, but she does not want to go alone because the creepiness it depicts from the outside. Inside the smell of cat piss is overwhelming. The band playing is called “Miscarriage” and for they act, a man attempts to rip a bloody baby from a band member. It is gross and disgusting. As Jon’s wife asks for a drink, as the bartender attempts to pour her a drink, she notices something floating in the bottle. Jon looks at the bottle and there is a dead cockroach floating in the bottle and Nicole almost got a drink from it. When Jon confronts Steve, the owner, his attitude is belligerent, rather than grateful that Jon came to help. He said that it was a college town, and college kids do not want cleanliness. He even named a drink after Jon, the Bug Bomb. What an arrogant jerk!
After the exterminators were in, the place was loaded with dead bugs, then Jon sent the crew in; Steve included, to clean the place. Jon learned as Steve was blaming the employees, that they are unpaid and only working for tips. If the employees did not care about each other, they would all be gone, because Steve cares about nobody but himself. Jon was so frustrated with Steve, but told the employees, that if not for them; he would walk out the door. He gave the employees an option; stay and he would try to make right by them, or leave with him, and he would find them jobs elsewhere.
Jon made the employees official, buy signing all the necessary papers for income tax reasons and putting them on the payroll. His mixologist and designer went to work to train the employees and make the bar workable. Jon sat one-on-one with Steve and had a breakthrough moment. At the stress-test, overwhelming amounts of people came into the bar, and the team did not pass the test.
Steve failed in being a manager by not following up, and the quality of the entertainment was lame with the sound system just a blast of ear-splitting feedback. Customers did not stay long after the entertainment started, lest be rendered deaf with the noise.
Jon told them that the next day, he would give the staff the proper tools to work with, and they would spend an entire day training. The bartender training was to find cocktails that would appeal to the new in-crowd. The new name was “Metal and Lace”, a Steampunk Lounge.
Inside, the bar was awesome and the new point of sale system, the sound equipment, gave the entire place a new look. The Steampunk crowd was in love. Steve did very little to help, and Chloe was the official leader. When Jon left, he did not say good-bye to Steve, instead he thanked Chloe, who stood up to Steve. After six weeks, Steve had still not paid his employees and now Chloe, Looney, and Jewel are looking for better jobs. Wherever they go, their new employer will be very lucky to have them. Some things even “Bar Rescue,” Jon Taffer and his crew cannot fix.
By Diane Zoller-Ciatto