Bar Rescue - Bryant's Ice House / Wildcatter Saloon - OPEN

Bryant's Ice House Bar Rescue

In this Bar Rescue episode, Jon Taffer visits Bryant’s Ice House in Katy, Texas.

Bryant’s Ice House is owned by Jeff Simon.

He left his career at a family accounting practice to own the bar of his dreams in 2012.

He put in $1.1m in purchasing the biker bar with a bad reputation.

All Jeff’s efforts to clean up the bar were futile as he kept the name.

The bar regulars are rowdy and refuse to leave.

This coupled with its location in a dimly lit road is chasing new customers away.

The staff are feisty and rude and also drive customers away.

Jon recons the bar with expert mixologist Russell Davis.

He is native Texan and knows the area.

However, they start by getting lost and are not able to find the bar.

They have to call for directions and the staff admit there is no sign and lots of people get lost trying to find it.

Jon and Russell finally find the bar and see it is so desolate that it looks dangerous.

Nadia, Missy, Kimmy are the bartenders and Shelly is Jeff’s girlfriend, who also helps at the bar sometimes.

Jon has two local girls Erin and Jessica go in as spies to test out the bar’s service.

They enter the bar and order a cosmo and a margarita.

They admit it is awful and they feel out of place at the bar is more of a mancave.

They order food and it is made in a food truck that is clean.

Everything is frozen and he has to leave the truck to deliver the food at the bar, which is a serious risk.

The chicken is not nice as it is not fresh.

Randy, the maintenance guy is drunk and beelines for the spies.

He harasses them so they leave the bar in fear.

The bartenders soon start fighting and get physical in front of customers.

Jeff is sitting whilst it is all happening around him and is not reacting.

Jon finally goes in to confront Jeff.

He gets Jeff to close the bar so they can tackle the staff’s issues.

Jon is upset at the staff, who display various degrees of disrespect.

Randy starts to be confrontational and swear at the women.

He is asked to apologise to the women but he decides to walk out instead.

The bartenders address their feud and Jeff is blamed for being lax with leadership.

The next day, Jon meets with staff again and everyone is sober.

Randy is back and apologetic about his behaviour the previous evening.

Jon has Jeff lay down the rule of no drinking at the bar.

All the staff say how they will make it better until Randy accuses Kimmie of stealing.

Jon reveals that he has caught an incident on camera.

Jeff has known about it but let her continue working there.

Jeff is made to fire Kimmie for the repeated thefts.

She does not go quietly and confronts Jeff outside, begging for another chance.

Jeff asks Shelly to help him get Kimmie to leave.

Randy is tasked to work with Jon’s remodelling team to redeem himself.

Jon introduces his experts Russel and food truck expert Eric Regan.

The training starts and Russell trains them on some common cocktails including the cosmo and margarita.

Missy is asked to demonstrate the new training.

She says she cannot make those drinks as she does not drink liquor.

She does not know how it is supposed to taste.

In the food truck they try to educate the cook on why frozen food is bad.

Jon speaks with Jeff to let him know he needs to be tough or lose his business.

The stress test is upon them and customers are let in.

The bartenders are having problems and Missy is the weakest and clumsy.

Nadya is working extra hard to pick up the slack.

Jeff is the running from the food truck to the bar and orders get mixed up.

The cook is overwhelmed with the number of orders.

The process is fractured and it takes twenty-five minutes for a customer to get the wrong burger.

Jon confronts the cook and they get into a shouting match.

Russell is so tired of Missy messing up so he takes over and makes some drinks.

The food truck is buried and customers leave out of frustration.

The bar is shut down.

During feedback afterwards Jon has Jeff fire Missy for being the worst bartender.

Nadya is made head bartender for her hard work.

Jon resolves to make the bar a workingman’s bar.

The next day, Rachel and Lexi are hired to work the bar to cover the recent firings and Sheila is a new server.

The training commences with new signature cocktails for the bar.

In the food truck the cook is trained on making a healthy chicken sandwich.

Jon’s staff along with Randy work for thirty-six full hours to renovate the bar.

The staff are gathered at night to unveil a new bar to turn around their bad reputation.

The bar has been renamed to Wildcatter Saloon.

There is a bigger, bold red sign and another LED light at the road and before the building.

There are enough markers so people do not get lost on their way to the bar.

Inside they leaned into the Oil worker theme, which is a majority of the residents jobs in the area.

There is a small oil rig in the center of the room.

The food truck has been heavily branded and stands out.

There is now a small computer for the cook to call servers when food is ready.

There are two POS systems and a third bar service station for easier service.

They set up the bar and open for the relaunch.

On relaunch, the bartenders are confident and doing great but some tables are being ignored.

Nadya repositions some bartenders to help with service and they cover the gap.

The food truck makes great food and they have vegetarian options that the customers love.


What Happened Next at Bryant's Ice House / Wildcatter Saloon?

Six weeks later, it is revealed sales are up 35%.

Nadya hired two more staff members to help with demand.

New customers are coming in and Jeff is a true leader.

Bryant's Ice House / Wildcatter Saloon is open.

Reviews are positive with reports of a great atmosphere with great music.

They announced that the bar was closing in 2016 but a few days later annouced that they weren't closing.

In July 2017, the bar was sold to another Bar Rescue owner, Justin from The End Zone.

Jon was due to return to the bar for another rescue after the bar was damaged after Storm Harvey but had to pull out after Jon contracted pneumonia.


Click for more Bar Rescues

Previous episode - The Tailgate / The Shot Exchange

Next episode - Pat's Cocktails

This post was last updated in September 2021.

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