Monday, 6 May 2019

Bar Rescue - Bungalow Bar - OPEN



On this episode of Bar Rescue, Jon Taffer visits Bungalow Bar in Far Rockaway, New York. The bar has been open for over 30 years, firstly by Dan Tubridy but the bar was taken over by his sons Dee and Terence in 2008, who brought in other sons as owners and friends as staff. The bar is located close to the beach and in a good week could see $100k in business but the business was devastated by Hurricane Sandy in October 2012.

The repair bill for the bar cost them greatly alongside the loss of trade from being closed for a number of months. Jon arrives at the restaurant with a construction expert and despite the efforts to rebuild the bar is not ready to reopen. The kitchen was also severely damaged and none of the equipment is usable. The equipment was under water for a number of days and began to rot and rust. They spend the first day in the bar removing damaged equipment and deep cleaning the interior. 

Jon meets with the owners the next day for their input on his plans to redecorate the bar. The owners disagree but they compromise on a theme and colour scheme. The staff who were left jobless after the bar closed are bought back in to learn under chef Nick and Mixologists Elayne and Peter. They undergo training before a planned stress test in an external venue.

For the stress test the brothers are given different responsibilities in the bar. The staff gave a good service with a few hiccups due to being out of practice. The owners friend Ryan however gives slow service and is the weakest member of staff. The owners had to be moved around slightly but gave a good performance. There were struggles in the kitchen due to the large number of orders but pulled it together. Overall, the stress test was a success with just a few errors. 

The next morning three new cocktails are introduces and a new menu is introduced alongside their new improved fish tacos. The work on reconstructing the bar was delayed as there was heavy rainfall for over 20 hours and they missed their deadline for the finish. Jon steps in to help with the reconstruction work.

The new bar is revealed the next day with a small rename to the Bungalow Bar and Restaurant to highlight that they also offer food. The nautical theme has been carried out throughout the bar, the deck has been revamped and the ramp restored. A touching murial was painted in dedication to the way the people pull together in times of a natural disaster. Everything in the restaurant was new including new kitchen equipment, new lighting and a POS system.

Jon introduces the owners of a previous Bar Rescue, Brad and Steve from Spirits on Bourbon and they develop a new light up cup like developed in their episode. They also make a £5000 donation to help out the bar.  Jon's team installed many new features to the bar including a new jukebox and he fitted the kitchen out with new equipment. 

On relaunch night, the bar is packed with customers. They are busier than they have been in a long time and the staff do brilliantly. The new designed cups are a huge hit with the patrons and they are happy with the new bar food. Jon is happy with the transformation and is sure they will succeed. 


What Happened Next?

A month later, the bar reported that sales were up 20%.

Bungalow Bar is open and reviews are excellent. 

Click for more Bar Rescues

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