Saturday, June 23, 2018

Bar Rescue - Phish Tales (Phish Heads) Update

On this week's episode of Bar Rescue, Jon Taffer and crew are in Lake City, Florida to rescue Phish Heads.  Phish Heads is a bar owned by couple Toni and Philip Crenshaw who are supposedly $250,000 in debt.  Their "stubborn, lazy" son James has been working at the bar for 9 years and doesn't think he can run it by himself.

During the Bar Rescue makeover, Jon Taffer decided to slightly rename Phish Heads to Phish Tales and the bar has kept the name. Let's take a look at some information, reviews, and updates for Phish Tales since Bar Rescue came and made all of the changes to the bar (All reviews are post-Bar Rescue):

Positive Reviews:
  • "this place under went a make over, same great quality food, and better service in my opinion. the poppers are to die for, extremely good"
  • "ALWAYS an enjoyable experience! The staff treats you like family, and the food and cocktails are superb!"
  • "Wonderful food!!! The seafood is always fresh, the sirloin steak is the best steak in town. Friday and Saturday night specials are amazing!!!"
  • "Great food, nicely done with the remodel."
  • "This is my 2nd visit to Phishtails and they did not disappoint either time. I ordered ordered fried Swain with Sweet potato fries and side salad. This is the same meal that I ordered last time I was at fish tails because it was so yummy the 1st time. The food hot, the salad chilled, and the beer cold. Couldn't ask for anything more. Service is excellent atmosphere is comfortable and inviting. My table needed wiped off but no worries, taken care if immediately."
  • "Came on St Patrick's day, the food was great, the drinks were even better, and the staff was EVEN BETTER. My son fell asleep after a few bites and the staff actually turned down the music in the whole place to allow him to sleep peacefully while we were there. Honestly the most considerate gesture I've ever witnessed at an establishment. I will probably come back at least once a week now just because I felt so welcomed. Couldn't have possibly been more happier."
  • "Phish Heads or Phish Tales... same great restaurant. Best fish sandwich in town"

Negative Reviews:
  • "I am a local and have been here a few times with regulars and it was just okay. I took my kids here for something different. On arrival the staff seemed surprised to see us, we were seated but then owner came out and started telling the waitress that we had better be done before his regular guests arrived. I am assuming someone said something about his comment within the hearing of customers (us). Then he started going on about how he doesn't care about people who only come in once in a while because he has plenty of regular customers to keep him in business. The food was okay at best. I would not come back for the food and I will never come back because we felt like an imposition to the staff and owner. What a ridiculous way to run a business."
  • "Been to Phish Heads on multiple occasions, sometimes with locals sometimes without. Only in Lake City could a place with such poor service receive such rave reviews for service. It is poor, very poor. Whether it is the staff yelling at each other, arguing, gossiping, most likely they are ignoring your table - especially if they do not personally know you. It should not take 15minutes to get your check especially at lunch (for people with jobs). Lighting is a little dark and the cheap TV's with local weather/news do not add to the ambience. Besides that, the food is good. The food is quite good. I like the food a lot but then they often run out of the specials."
  • "Not worth the price difference vs when it was Phish Heads. Minimal upscaling."
*Reviews from Google, Tripadvisor

Other News and Links:

  • The Bar Rescue makeover happened in January 2018
  • Here are two preview videos of the episode from the Paramount YouTube page - Video 1, Video 2
  • Here is the Phish Tales Facebook page which has the updated name.  The bar's website still says Phish Heads and hasn't been updated.
  • The bar has updated their Florida license to list their business name as Phish Tales. (Link)
  • Here are the Facebook pages of James (manager), Amy (bartender)
    • Bartender Amy has appeared on two Food Network competition shows - Halloween Baking Championship and Holiday Baking Championship.
  • James recently posted about the upcoming episode saying, "Have you ever valued your own dignity?  I recently received a valuation of my own and apparently it's only worth luxury vinyl plank flooring and a few Edison light bulbs... Tune in this Sunday night for a national, public execution of my dignity only on Paramount network. Hint it's not cops, my favorite show! #barrescue #johntafferismyhomeboy.  PS this is not a pitty post I enjoy poking fun at the dumb ass decisions of others but especially my own!"
    • James also said that Bar Rescue pretty much just painted and gave them new floors.
    • Another comment on Facebook said, "It wasn't really rescued. It was SLIGHTLY remodelled and nothing changed on the menu."
  • Right after the makeover, James posted, "From the Crenshaw family we'd like to thank all the people who were involved in making this happen! We've been privileged to be a part of this community for 18 years and with the positive support of our customers and community we will make it another 18! If you take one families hard work and dedication and only want to spread negativity please feel free to do so elsewhere. We are only trying to do our best and better OUR community, and we try to surround ourselves with people of the like! Thank you Lake City! Wouldn't want to live and work anywhere else!"
    • From that post, you will also see that the Bar Rescue makeover made the front page of the local newspaper.
  • Here is a link to the article in the local paper, which says, "Spike contacted Crenshaw’s family in July to ask if the restaurant, located on Southwest Main Boulevard, could be featured on the show. Crenshaw was dead-set against it, but his wife, Toni, and adult son, James, who co-own the business, were in favor. “They talked me into it,” he said. “Just wore me down."
    • Philip also said about Jon Taffer, "He was a jerk. He destroyed my restaurant and tried to destroy my family to make a TV show. But then he put it all back together. That’s what he does, and he’s really good at it.”
  • Phish Heads had good reviews before the makeover with a 4.5 star out of 5 avg on Yelp (22 reviews), 4.2 star out of 5 on Google (208 reviews), and 4 star out of 5 avg. on Tripadvisor (85 reviews).
  • Here are some past restaurant inspections at the bar if you are interested. In the April 2018 one, a food service manager wasn't on duty during the inspection, but James eventually came, so there was no issue. (Link)


Phish Heads was renamed to Phish Tales by Bar Rescue and the bar has kept the name.  The reviews since the makeover are pretty positive with people liking the food and the local atmosphere.  There were also some complaints about the bar catering to their local loyal customers.  The bar had pretty positive reviews before Bar Rescue, and this is another case of Bar Rescue contacting the bar for a makeover rather than the other way around.  The Crenshaw's seem happy with the experience/makeover although they and customers have commented that the interior isn't much different besides new paint, a new floor and new lighting.

*To see how all of the bars from Bar Rescue are doing, go to the Bar Rescue Updates page, and also Like us on Facebook or Follow Us on Twitter to stay up to date with all things involving Bar Rescue.

No comments:

Post a Comment