On tonight’s Spike episode of “Bar Rescue,” Jon Taffer and his crew came to Brix Wine Bar in Sunset Beach, California to conduct this rescue. Rick Reich moved his family from Washington State and was studying to be a sommelier as a hobby, but when he thought he had a great idea; he opened this wine bar. The first year, it was a huge hit, but when inexperienced Rick decided to entertain his customers, rather than manage his business, things went downhill quickly. Rick wants to be the center of attraction all the time, and feels that Brix is his stage. However, the lack of organization and no attention to details put him in debt to $180,000. He is without any surplus funds and needs to do something quickly before it’s too late.
As Jon, wine sommelier Matthew Kaner and Chef Pink watched, there were two conflicting signs on the building; one read Brix Wine and Gourmet Experience while the other read Brix Brews & NY Deli. For the recon, Jon called in his friends again; Maria Menounos and her boyfriend Kevin Undergaro. The place has no liquor license and only sells wine and beer. Maria knows a lot about wine, and she plans to ask Rick several questions. He opened bottle after bottle for Maria to try and by the seventh bottle, Jon told Maria that if he opened another one; she would be his hero forever. Challenge met! Then Jon went in to lay down the law to him. Jon asked him questions that he could not answer and called him out for opening eight bottles of wine and not selling one glass. He would rather see his customers smile as he goes to the poor house.
Jon will return the next day and wants his monthly sales receipts. Jon had Partender come in and the results were $7,500 worth of product was poured, but they only collected $3,000. Jon introduced Matthew Kaner and Chef Pink to teach them how to run the business. Then Rick just walked out stating that he was done, as his wife Sharon cried. Jon told Sharon to get him back here, which she did. When Jon walked back in he told Rick that he was there to save his ass and not kiss it.
Matthew started the training immediately and showed how wine cocktails can boost their business. Chef Pink was in the kitchen giving the chefs recipes to boost the sales of wine and beer. The bartender had to leave the bar each time someone ordered a draft beer, leaving the bar unattended. As people continued to order food, nothing went to the kitchen until it was discovered by Jon that the ticket machine was unplugged. As Jon yelled, Rick told him to back off. When it was time to close and go to work, they were told that there was off-site training because he had a lot of work to do to redo the place.
The training was going well as Matthew showed all the bartenders how to make good cocktails and Chef Pink gave the kitchen staff great new offerings for wine pairings. When the redo was completed, Jon met the staff outside to unveil the new name, and it was now Pacific Coast Wine Bar and inside the wine display was breathtaking. Maria and Kevin returned and were amazed at the change on this episode of “Bar Rescue.”
Four weeks after the relaunch, PCWB has generated $63,514.80 in revenue. Rick has implemented systems that have set his staff up for success, and he is focused more on the bottom line than being the center of attention.