Saturday, 6 October 2018

Bar Rescue - The Tradewinds - OPEN

The-Tradewinds-Bar-Rescue


On this episode of Bar Rescue, Jon Taffer visits The Tradewinds in Cotati, California. The bar was originally owned by car salesman Dan Thompson and family friend Eric Floria, who is also in the car trade. Dan was very successful in car sales and thought a bar would allow him more time to spend with his family. Dan brought in stepson Chase to manage the bar and gave him a share of the business but he has struggled to manage the bar. He is often missing and fails to keep on top of inventory so they often run out of beer. Sales have declined and they are in over $300,000 of debt.

Jon arrives at the bar with mixologist Rob and culinary expert Michael and believes the bar is in a prime location of "Sonoma Wine Country" as they are located close to the University so should be busy with students. Both the exterior and interior of the bar are dated and there is no correlation between the name and theme of the bar. Jon meets Dan and Eric but Chase hasn't turned up, they call him but he ignores the phone. Chase's mother Traci is the cook and sits at the bar waiting for customers to arrive. Chase arrives and is greeted by cheers from the customers.

The service he witnesses is a disaster -the beer system is faulty, the beer is warm and foamy, the POS is dated and crashes constantly and they are only accepting cash payments. They run out of items and customers are disappointed there is no cocktail menu on offer. The only food on offer is popcorn and Chase gets overwhelmed and leaves the bar to go to the bar across the street for a drink! An argument breaks out in the middle of the street.

Jon goes inside to speak to the owners and shouts at them. Dan goes to speak to Chase and they talk about treating it like a business. Jon speaks with the owners and they reveal that they have put money into the business every month. Rob teaches the bar staff two new cocktails and Michael is teaching the kitchen mini calzones. 

Jon organises a stress test of the bar and 75 locals come to the bar. Chase struggles to manage the bar and the customers are left waiting for drinks. They neglect the middle of the bar and no one knows where the food is going. 

The next morning they meet to discuss the previous service and the plan for the bar. Jon wants to turn the bar into a Tiki bar. More recipes are revealed including a sweet calzone, they have their own bus and the new exterior is revealed with a large sign. Chase has a hair cut and the new bright interior is revealed. There is a new POS system and beer cooling system and a storm system for their signature cocktail. 

On relaunch night, the new cocktails are a success and the pace they are serving is much quicker. 


What Happened Next?

Six weeks later sales are up 25% and Chase is more committed to managing the bar. The bar is still open and reviews are mostly good. 

Taffer returned to the bar in a Back to the Bar special a year later.  Food sales have increased 25% and the calzones are still popular. Chase has stopped his drinking and slacking off and is a more responsible manager and was put to the test of making a cocktail. 

Recent reviews from a number of patrons seem to have had negative experiences due to the bouncers behaviour and have witnessed drunk management. In 2018 Chase got engaged and had a baby boy. 

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