Jon Taffer Was Never The Same After Bar Rescue

There are many ball-buster reality TV show hosts on the air today. Food competition show hosts, like Gordon Ramsey and Robert Irvine, mop the floor with people's tears and almost seem to be fueled by the chaos of a poorly-run restaurant. However, nothing and no one compares to Jon Taffer, host of "Bar Rescue." Before hosting "Bar Rescue," Taffer had spent years working in the hospitality industry and got his big claim-to-fame co-creating the NFL Sunday Ticket sensation. Despite the fame that came with that, his popularity and reputation soared when "Bar Rescue" first aired in 2011 (via FOX Sports).

Even after that first episode, Taffer's life was never the same. Taffer's presence was one not often seen on television –– explosive and almost out of control, like a staged circus show that always seemed on the cusp of internal combustion. Over the years, it began to feel more rewarding than toxic, as Taffer changed the lives of hundreds of employees and bar owners.

When "Bar Rescue" is done and over, he will forever be typecast as the screaming and towering presence that shouts "Shut it down" at the drop of a hat. From the show, Taffer has gained unimaginable wealth and fame in addition to other business adventures. We are certain that Taffer would be wildly successful without "Bar Rescue," but the scale of his fame couldn't compare — thanks to the popularity of this insanely obsession-worthy show.

Taffer released a line of hard seltzers and mixers

Naturally, it makes sense for the mixologist man himself to launch a business perfect for every home bar. After starting "Bar Rescue," Taffer launched a collection of craft cocktail mixers that makes mixology easier and simpler than ever. Taffer's Mixologist includes all the best cocktail hits — from a strawberry, light, and original margarita mix to spicy and regular bloody mary, mojito, and cosmopolitan mixers.

In 2019, Taffer's Mixologist added a line of hard seltzers in punchy flavors like cucumber jalapeño, pineapple coconut, and strawberry basil (via Business Wire). Now, there are new flavors to choose from including cherry lime, grapefruit, and an elderflower flavor. Plus, with 100 calories a can (and no added sugar or gluten), it's a Taffer-approved cocktail concoction for everybody.

A review in InsideHook loved the low and affordable price of the mixers and the unique range of seltzer flavors that stood out against the generic mango and lime flavors from competitors. The mixers were also calorie-conscious and made with natural sweeteners –– a good solution for those sugary bar syrups. Their favorites were the margarita mixes and the cucumber jalapeño seltzer, while the others were still solid and refreshing options. While none of the mixers paired well with dark liquors and couldn't beat a hand-mixed cocktail, it's still an easy-sipping solution from Jon Taffer himself.

Taffer thought about running for office

It would be an understatement to call Taffer's personality authoritative and aggressive –– perfect qualities for a gentle leader. That being said, Taffer has teased the idea of running for public office in the hopes of achieving the first oval bar with a built-in POS system.

Taffer's first mention of politics arose in 2015 in an interview with the Washington Examiner, where he mentioned the presidential race between Hilary Clinton and Donald Trump. While expressing his trepidation with the two candidates, he expressed that even though he could "do a far better job than the people in the White House," he had no aspirations of running for office. According to BroBible, in 2020, Taffer talked with Trump about seriously running for office — to which Trump expressed that he would do very well in politics.

Then, in April 2021, Taffer shocked fans on Twitter with a "Taffer for President 2024" campaign poster. Even though it was nothing more than an April Fool's Day joke, fans seemed on board with the idea of Taffer yelling "Shut it down" at every presidential meeting. Again in 2021, Taffer sat down with BroBible to talk about his political aspirations, explaining that he thought about running for the Senate in 2022 and for local Las Vegas government races. Taffer felt that he didn't fit into one political party. He also said that even though he felt a social responsibility to run, it wouldn't be in his future for 2022.

He is a published author with multiple books

Not only is Taffer an accomplished businessman, but he's also an accomplished best-selling author of not one, but three books. His books are more than just tools to gain celebrity clout, with some of them even becoming New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestsellers (via Penguin Random House). They aren't Rupi Kaur-style books of poetry riddled with deep metaphors and bursts of anger, but self-help-style books with business tips and tricks from the entrepreneur himself. He published his first book a couple of years after "Bar Rescue" launched, entitled "Raise the Bar: An Action-Based Method for Maximum Customer Reactions," a strategy guide on how to mold a successful bar or restaurant.

In 2018, Taffer published a blunt self-help book entitled "Don't Bullsh*t Yourself!: Crush the Excuses That Are Holding You Back." Compared to his last book, it focused on the intertwining of business and self, discussing how six different categories of excuses can hinder your life goals in a very forced mindfulness-kinda way. His recently published 2022 book, "The Power of Conflict: Speak Your Mind and Get the Results You Want," is the constructively combative book that sums up Taffer completely. Not only does it discuss the benefits of effective arguing but how to use conflict as a leadership tool to change your life and business (via Business Wire). Now, we just need him to make that breakout as a fiction writer.

He opened a new restaurant in Washington D.C.

Taffer has helped relaunch and improve hundreds of bars from his show "Bar Rescue," so it only makes sense that Taffer opened a restaurant of his own. Not only does it display all of his knowledge gained from the show, but it's a pilgrimage for "Bar Rescue" fanatics. In 2020, Forbes detailed that he was opening a chain of Taffer's Tavern across the country, in partnership with Cuisine Solution and the franchising masterminds behind Five Guys, Fransmart. The neighborhood tavern chain places an emphasis on sous-vide cooking that refuses to sacrifice quality food for friendly vibes.

In addition to a Taffer's Tavern location in Alpharetta, Georgia, locations in Watertown, Massachusetts, and Washington D.C. recently opened in 2022. At the time of publication, locations in Gainesville, Florida; Las Vegas, Nevada; and Savannah, Georgia, are set to open in the coming future. However, the big question is whether this restaurant is the next best eatery where everyone knows your name or just another celebrity restaurant flop.

Washingtonian did a deep dive into the place, starting with its moody and man-cavey ambiance. That being said, the taste tester was not pleased with the selection of highly-elite, mixologist-prepared cocktails that resembled frothy Gatorade. One person called it an "elevated TGI-Fridays" with friendly staff and an abundance of salt-laden dishes. Not everyone loves it, but the good thing about Taffer is that he doesn't seem to care too much about people's opinions.

He launched a line of heat-and-serve entrees at Costco

Even if you don't want to make the trek to one of Taffer's Taverns, you can get that same sous-vide taste at home. In addition to launching a restaurant chain, Taffer partnered with Cuisine Solutions to launch the at-home, heat-and-serve beef shank entree available at a Costco near you. Maxing out at around 7 pounds, this hunk of meat would make an easy and stress-free Sunday meal — or a bougie meal prep, depending on how you're feeling.

It's sensibly seasoned with just salt and pepper, and can be prepared in under two hours in the oven or with the Taffer's preferred sous-vide method of cooking. It's a versatile cut of meat that could be delicious with red wine, a classic Taffer cocktail, mashed potatoes, or roasted vegetables — a classic all-American meat and potatoes dinner. Some comments on Reddit love the versatility and low-stress prep factor, though some feel queasy endorsing a product from someone they describe as "a tool." Nevertheless, who doesn't love a good ole' shank of beef (besides vegetarians)?

Taffer has hosted new reality shows with other celebrities

Let's be real, "Bar Rescue" is one of the most unhinged, yet fascinating, reality shows on TV. It's hard to watch — but it's even harder not to watch Taffer belittle a grown man as if he's a Pomeranian puppy. Even though Taffer has tried to replicate his success by hosting other reality TV shows, none have taken off quite as well.

His first co-hosted reality show after "Bar Rescue", "Hungry Investors," was like a collaboration between "Shark Tank" and "Kitchen Nightmares," but with less screaming. Taffer, alongside celebrity chefs, Tiffany Derry and Josh Besh, would visit two restaurants and determine which one was worth investing in. But the show fizzled quickly after the first season.

Then comes Taffer's real curveball in his career, "Marriage Rescue," where he treats every couple on the brink of divorce like the nonchalant bar managers on "Bar Rescue." There is somehow so much anger in all six episodes that it makes it feel almost redundant — which probably explains its less than five out of 10-star rating on IMDb. His latest show, "Restaurant Rivals: Irvine vs. Taffer," pins the celebrity chef, Robert Irvine, against the celebrity host to see who can best improve a failing restaurant. Honestly, it feels more like a rat race to see who is the better "Robin Hood" — but who said that reality TV had to be healthy?

He said some controversial things about restaurant workers

Controversy is nothing new to Taffer or his "Bar Rescue" team. Taffer has been sued multiple times, including assault & battery charges (via Deadline), but also for sex and race discrimination (per The Wrap). With that, Taffer is not immune to being put in the hot seat by the media.

It all started when Taffer was discussing with Laura Ingraham on Fox News about service workers receiving unemployment benefits during the COVID-19 pandemic (via Variety). When Ingraham mentioned just cutting off unemployment altogether, Taffer compared the service workers to militant dogs, since "a hungry dog is an obedient dog" (via Twitter). People on Twitter were outraged by the tone-deaf response with some pointing out this classist disconnect and others explaining how they lost all respect for Taffer.

One Twitter comment even pointed out that Taffer's company, Jon Taffer LLC, received two PPP loans totaling around $60,000 during the pandemic. The next day, Taffer posted an apology on Twitter explaining that the use of his analogy was not meant to be misconstrued and that he hoped to see the service industry come back stronger than ever.

Taffer started a podcast

It seems that every celebrity and acquaintance out there is getting a podcast. Since there are so many, it's hard to know the extent of who or who hasn't jumped on the podcast wagon. Taffer is no exception, having launched his self-titled, "The Jon Taffer Podcast," in 2018.

From episode to episode, Taffer not only features celebrities, but doctors and self-help gurus, to give the best advice for both you and your business. Not only does he spill his industry secrets and how-to's, but he also gives advice and opinions about hot-bed political topics. Some of Taffer's big-ticket featured celebrities include the ever-nostalgic Carrot Top, Dr. Phil, "Shark Tank's" Daymond John, and Robert Irvine. 

Taffer even featured former President Donald Trump in 2020 to discuss the upcoming election, Taffer's political aspirations, and COVID-19's impact on the hospitality industry (per Insider). Now, we just need him to start a "Dr. Phil"-style talk show, complete with all the yelling.

Taffer hasn't been well received by fellow bartenders

To put it simply, Taffer is very — how you say — combative and controversial. However, you would think that a show almost exclusively about bartenders would be widely praised by the hospitality industry. While it's hard to say what percentage loves or hates him, there was definitely some outcry from the community over a 2016 interview.

The "Bar Rescue" host sat down with Huffington Post and discussed the workings of a good bar, not to mention the dos and don'ts of drinking at a bar. Shortly after the interview was posted, VICE clapped back at all the ways the interview enraged bartenders everywhere — especially this one Twitter thread about how Taffer incorrectly explained tequila's origin. Vice even explained that a now-defunct Facebook group called Bartenders Against Jon Taffer was started in response to the article.

Bartender reactions in the Vice article also criticized Taffer calling the Old Fashioned underrated, Taffer endorsing the notoriously-annoying bartender signal, and his thoughts on tipping. Thrillist did a follow-up interview with the "Bar Rescue" host in regards to the HuffPost interview, explaining that he had great respect for bartenders, but had to look at bartending through the lens of an owner now. He explained that the community overall respected him and that he wouldn't let the opinions of "20 or 30 snobby bartenders" get his goat.

He offers consulting and business classes

You get to see Taffer in action on his show, but for some, seeing isn't just believing. Regardless of whether you agree or disagree with him, he has learned a lot over the years from "Bar Rescue." Now (for a small or large price) you could take courses with Taffer himself, or just a pre-recorded version of himself, to learn everything he knows from his time in the service industry.

In 2020, during the COVID-19 pandemic lockdown, Taffer offered a free "Resetting America" program that included six classes for owners on how to deal with a post-pandemic restaurant industry (via FSR Magazine). On Jon Taffer's website, he has virtual teaching lessons and e-books for the convenient price of $99.95 in order to achieve your next Taffer-sized dreams.

The lessons run through the dynamics and processes of promoting, opening, sourcing, and designing your own Taffer-approved bar or restaurant. Even if you don't have a business you need advice with, you can book Taffer for conferences as a keynote speaker. If that's too bougie for you, you can book a Cameo with Taffer for only $350 (since the best anniversary or birthday gift is Taffer screaming "shut it down" on your special day).

If you aren't an auditory learner, there are Taffer Consulting services available, where you can hire Taffer and his team for one-on-one help with concept development, remodeling, and even improving resort operations. Now, if only you could book him for kids' birthday parties.

His net worth is higher than you'd think

Most of the time, it's hard to truly figure out how much a celebrity is worth. With the tabloids, it feels like different numbers are constantly being thrown around. We know Taffer has got quite a bit of money, thanks not only to "Bar Rescue” and the successful ventures that resulted from the show, but also the billion-dollar company, NFL Sunday Ticket, he helped launch (per BroBible). That being said, his net worth is surprisingly high for a celebrity reality show host.

According to Celebrity Net Worth, Taffer has a net worth valued at around $14 million dollars. Now, it's hard to get a definitive breakdown of how much of that money is revenue from "Bar Rescue" alone. However, one breakdown from What's Their Net Worth theorizes that he and his "Bar Rescue" crew receive around $100,000 an episode. It also estimates that, with the show and his entrepreneurial ventures, Taffer makes around $450,000 a year. Regardless, he definitely makes enough to afford this bougie home bar set up seen on Twitter and custom suits from Martin Greenfield in NYC.