Bar Rescue - Celebrities Sports Grill - CLOSED

Celebrities Sports Grill Bar Rescue

In this Bar Rescue episode, Jon Taffer visits Celebrities Sports Grill in Yucaipa, California.

Celebrities Sports Grill is owned by brothers Max and Ryke Zahir.

They are both army veterans, having served in special forces.

In 2012 Ryke was injured in Afghanistan and his eyesight was damaged.

Max stayed with Ryke and did not return to active duty and instead they opened the bar.

They initially invested $480,000 into the bar with both being equal partners.

The bar started off very well making $200,000 a month and they started an outreach.

Max made a video of giving a homeless veteran free food and it went viral.

They raised over $20,000 before it was found out the homeless man was not a veteran and the business received a lot of backlash.

Max did not use the money but he is getting hate as a result of it.

The bar is now $750,000 in debt.

They put the bar up for sale to cut their losses but no one showed interest.

Jon recons the bar with expert mixologist Rob Floyd and expert chef Ryan Scott.

Jon fills them in on the owners and the situation at the bar.

The inside of the bar is tired and has no central theme.

Sabrina is the manager and there are three bartenders and a cook.

They see Max’s online problems and his negative responses to negativity, swearing and cursing.

Jon has all the people he replied to online along with friends come into the bar to see how Max controls his temper.

They come in and the tickets pile up, the manager is confused, they run out of glasses and dirty dishes are left on tables.

Several people leave without paying especially after waiting more than forty-five minutes for a new drink.

Max comps several meals and drinks then lose his cool while serving them and asks a customer to leave for giving feedback.

Jon has seen enough and goes in to encourage the spies to give feedback to Max.

Sabrina complains she has never had the tools to do her job properly.

All the customers say the place sucks and they would not come back.

Max is defensive and Jon asks him to apologise before he will come back to rescue the bar.

After leaving Max refuses to do so and tries to kick out the negative reviewers and a physical altercation almost escalates.

Jon comes in the next morning to meet the staff and Max is alone.

Ryke has had to stay away because of his PTSD.

Jon thinks the food costs are high and Max has not done anything about it or giving the staff proper training.

The staff say people hate Max because he has an ego and he has successfully turned the whole community against him.

Jon identifies Max’s negativity has extended so far that it’s even in the mayor’s office and they need conflict resolution with the community.

Jon introduces his experts to the bar staff.

Rob trains the staff on the basic technique of shaking a drink using rice instead of ice so they can hear the rhythm.

Ryan trains the kitchen on a Sunday roast burger and the staff love the taste and the low cost.

The stress test is a conflict resolution exercise as well as Mike has to win over the community again.

The Mayor is in attendance for the stress test.

The kitchen starts great, making food and sending it out.

The bar staff are slow and forget most of the training they were given.

Customers are waiting too long for a drink and a few people walk out.

Max is trying his best and is calm when talking to guests.

Jon tells Max about an online survey he had going on for the bar on whether the bar should be saved.

Over 80% said yes despite the bad service.

The bar is shut down as all the issues have been noted.

The next day they identify problems that they need to fix.

Jon announces some community members are coming to help remodel the bar.

Since the remodel is moving forward, Jon asks Max to take down the bar for sale.

Rob trains the bar staff on some colourful cocktails.

Ryan trains the kitchen staff on making a bacon fondue.

Jon sits with Max on deciding how to pay back the $20,000 that was raised.

The bar is remodelled, the staff are gathered the next night and a new bar is revealed.

The bar has been renamed to The Victory Bar and Restaurant.

They staff love the name and the rebranding is great for them to turn over a new leaf in the community.

Inside the bar is warmer and classier.

They have five 2Touch POS systems and a showcase of trophies in the center of the bar.

The bar is soon open to the customers for the relaunch and they come in excited.

On relaunch, Ryke comes in for the first time since the first night.

He is shocked by the changes and the fact the community is behind them.

The bar is doing great as is the kitchen that is coping well with the new food menu.

Max serves the mayor’s table personally and solves problems around the bar.


What Happened Next at Celebrities Sports Grill?

Six weeks later, it is revealed Max did a ribbon cutting reopening in honour of the vets.

The $20,000 that was raised was donated to a charity in front of the community.

The Victory Bar / Celebrities Sports Grill closed in June 2016.

They closed shortly after the episode was filmed so there are not many reviews, most of them were negative.

The brothers own another bar called Celebrities Sports Grill in San Bernardino, California and this location is open.

Click for more Bar Rescues

Previous episode - City Bar / The Bradley

Next episode - YNot Sports Pub & Grub

This post was last updated in August 2021.

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