Jon Taffer is the Gordon Ramsay of bars, known
by most of us as the one that yells, screams, berates, and sometimes humiliates failing
bar owners in the name of helping them rehabilitate their businesses. But just how did the host of Bar Rescue develop
his unique style? Here’s a look at the untold truth of Jon Taffer. The early years On Bar Rescue, one thing Taffer is always
on the lookout for is staffers who are skimming, either out of the registers, by overpouring,
or by offering free drinks. And he told Vice that’s for a good reason. After dropping out of college at 24, he got
a job at Barney’s Beanery, and was immediately pulled aside by a shady co-worker and told
that the entire staff were colluding in a scheme to steal $100 every night from the
bar. Rather than go along with it, though, Taffer
immediately told the bar’s owner, who fired the rest of the staff and promoted Taffer
to lead bartender. He failed upwards When it comes to bars failing, Taffer knows
from personal experience just how easy it is to lose a fortune. In 2015, he told Business Insider that after
ignoring advice from his friends, he lost his entire life savings on his first business
deal. “I did the deal. I got ripped off for $600,000 every dime I
had. And I’ve been very conscious about ever having
a partner since.” Fake news In 2016, The Huffington Post ran an interview
with Taffer that had some members of the bar community up in arms. The biggest problem? His incorrect assertion that tequila and mezcal
are related to mescaline and thus have hallucinogenic properties. Not only is this just wrong, but it’s also
wildly wrong, as mezcal and tequila come from agave, which is a type of lily, while mescaline
comes from a cactus. It’s not the only thing Taffer has said that
drew the ire of other bartenders and bar owners who question his skills and knowledge. Hey, haters gonna hate especially when you’re
spreading fake news. Inappropriate bar-havior On Bar Rescue, Taffer is quick to call out
owners and employees who create an uncomfortable atmosphere for women. Back in the day, though, Taffer apparently
had a very different attitude, as he told The New York Times in 2016 that he organized
a competition in 1982 where women competed to win a breast augmentation.The winners were
required to give the bar before-and-after bras that were then bronzed and hung over
the men’s room urinals. Taffer tried to justify it by explaining that
society used to allow people to get away with all sorts of offensive behavior, while using
offensive language himself to tell the paper, “… it was a very different political time. I mean, I did midget-tossing in Long Beach,
California. We would throw midgets. So this was a different time. I would never suggest doing anything like
that today.” He created NFL Sunday Ticket Just about any football fan will tell you
that the NFL Sunday Ticket is the best idea of all time, as it allows fans to watch their
favorite teams play no matter where you live. And strangely enough, fans can thank Taffer
for the NFL Sunday Ticket. Turns out, he developed the plan in the ’90s
while working with a company called ComSat, which was looking for ideas on how to broaden
sports programming in bars and restaurants. “they took my work brought it to the NFL..
yeah.. They said ‘this is really great let’s do it
ourselves.’ and I went on the board of NFL enterprises
for three years.” Focused rage A big part of Taffer’s shtick on Bar Rescue
is blowing a gasket and ranting at failing bar owners and employees. It’s made him a minor pop culture icon he
even appeared as himself in Showtime’s Shameless “Look at this fruit! It’s g—— disgusting. Cocaine on your bar!” But it turns out that this tough love is mostly
for show. On his official website, Taffer explains that
the angry outbursts are meant as a motivational tool to spur change at the bars he works with. “It’s not something I like to do, but when
I do yell, it’s deliberate. When I get angry, it’s with a purpose. My purpose is to solve a problem, and I never
lose sight of that.” Despite his focused rage, not every bar reacts
positively. In 2014, Taffer suggested to BroBible that
about 20 percent of the bars he tries to rescue end up going under anyway. But he explained to Entrepreneur that he doesn’t
take those failures to heart. “A big part is not to take things personally. It’s all business. Projects and deals are not children or family. […] Businesses come and go. Treat businesses non-emotionally.” “that’s your future – BROKEN!!” Overall, though, he thinks opening a bar in
today’s climate is a bad business decision. Thanks to concerns like higher food, beverage,
and labor costs, Taffer told Fox Business in 2017 he wouldn’t open a bar today. “I got in the bar business in 1978 and owned
my first one in 1989 and back then the music was different, the level of violence was different. I mean, people didn’t even lock their front
doors. Today, there is a whole separate consideration
when you go into this business.” Hall of Famer Over the course of his career, Taffer has
had plenty of failures and controversial mistakes. But he’s also well respected in some parts
of the nightclub industry thanks to a track record that includes working with some of
the biggest names in music and comedy. So it’s no real surprise that Taffer was one
of the first inductees into the Nightclub Hall of Fame, which is a real thing that honors
legends of the industry like Lil Jon. Way to go, Jons!