Sandtown Pub / JJ's Chicken Bar - Bar Rescue Update - Open or Closed?

Sandtown Pub Bar Rescue

In this Bar Rescue episode, Jon Taffer visits Sandtown Pub in Atlanta, Georgia.

Sandtown Pub is owned by Fredericka Jones.

She worked in the fast food industry for over 40 years and decided to set up her own business in the bar industry.

Fredericka has struggled to get funding for her business.

She is an absent manager leaving her staff to do as they like.

Her daughter Amber helps to run the bar but she often argues with the cooks Derrick and Darryl.

Their relationship is strained as Fredericka treats her staff like children and Amber disagrees with this.

Jon is at his command centre, watching the bar with expert Chef Jason Santos.

He introduces the owner and the staff to him.

They see that the kitchen has grease in every corner and is run by brothers Derrick and Darryl.

Jon has two NBA players come in as spies to test the bar and the services.

When they ask for Mojitos the bartenders do not have the ingredients so have to change their orders.

The drinks they order have some bits floating in them.

They also order food and the cooks do so many unsanitary things that Jon and Jason are forced to intervene.

Jon meets Fredericka and Jason goes to the kitchen to confront the cooks.

They are in denial of the state of the kitchen and the unsanitary practices.

Derrick loses his cool and has a loud rant first to Jason and after to Jon.

He is so loud that the customers in front of the house can hear it all.

Fredericka tries to calm the situation down and get Derrick back but he leaves.

Jon apologies to the customers and explains the kitchen is in a poor state and no one can eat from there.

The next day, Jon sits with Fredericka and Amber to speak about the behaviour of the cook.

Fredericka tries to put the blame on Jason rather than seeing that his attitude is poor.

Amber says she has also had problems with Derrick and Jon makes Fredericka realise she needs to be manager.

Fredericka fires Derrick based on his behaviour and he leaves quietly.

Jon sits down with the staff and they each give opinions on what's wrong with the business.

The overall consensus is that the problem with the bar is the kitchen.

Darryl is emotional about his brother leaving and he decides that he also wants to leave.

Fredericka tries to talk him into staying but he wants to speak with Jon.

Jon goes outside but he sees both brothers have already removed their mics and left.

Jon introduces his experts and he has also brought expert mixologist Chantel Anderson to help.

Chantel is taking the staff through making a new cocktail that they will be serving at the Stress Test.

While Jason is talking to staff in the kitchen, Darryl returns at the request of Fredericka.

They are taught how to make and plate fried chicken along with handmade sauces.

It is time for the stress test and the eagerly waiting customers are let in.

The orders flood in and the kitchen descends into chaos as they have a bad system in place that confuses them.

When the first meal is ready, they test the chicken and it is raw in the middle.

The ticketing is out of order and food goes out carelessly.

Some dishes are sent back as they are either under done or over done.

At the bar, the bartenders start to make small errors on the drinks.

Most errors are caught before they are served but others are sent to the customers who complain.

Darryl and Amber get into a small fight due to the tension in the kitchen.

There are customers still unattended and they have gone too far to be able to claw their way back so the stress test is shut down.

The experts see the demographic is mostly married and middle class.

They decide to stick with a chicken theme and familiar but simple drinks for the concept.

The next day, Chantel takes them through some simple cocktails and has them practice them until they can make them perfectly.

In the kitchen, Jason takes them through a simple appetiser dish.

Jon sits with Fredericka and Amber to try and solve the management problem.

He supports Amber to have more authority in the bar so there is visible leadership.

Jon’s team works on the bar space and Jon joins the staff at night to unveil the new bar.

The bar has been renamed JJ's Chicken Bar and is named after Fredericka’s father.

It is now a Chicken Bar and will be serving chicken alongside basic drinks.

Inside the bar is warmer with better lighting and ambience.

Fredericka is excited to see branded packaging for takeaways.

There is a new Pathspot device, a subscription to Partender and a Harbourtouch POS system.

They also have a Manitowoc Ice machine and a Jason Hulfish handmade centrepiece above the bar.

Darryl also gets a new chef’s jacket.

The staff are happy and quickly set up for the relaunch and let the customers in.

On relaunch, the bartenders confidently make drinks and the customers love the drinks.

The kitchen is under control and they keep up with orders.

The food is made correctly and sent out on time to happy customers.

The customers love the ambience and the service.

What Happened Next at Sandtown Pub?

Six weeks later, it is revealed sales are up 20%.

They are seeing new customers coming through the door.

Amber is hiring and training new staff.

Fredericka rehired Derrick after Darryl pleaded for him to return to the kitchen.

They didn't keep the new name as there is already a chicken place called JJ's in Atlanta.

Sandtown Pub is open.

Reviews are mixed after the show.

Some comments mention poor service and a long wait and a mix of praise and complaints on the food.

Click for more Bar Rescues

Previous episode - Confetti's Bar & Grill

Next episode - JF Kicks

This post was last updated in November 2022.

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