Saturday, May 7, 2022

Jimmy's (JF Kicks) - Bar Rescue Update

In this week's episode of Bar Rescue, Jon Taffer and crew are in Valrico, Florida to rescue JF Kick's.  JF Kicks was purchased in 2019 by brothers Johnny and Jimmy Spieldenner and the bar was booming to start.  Jimmy tragically passed away and things started to go downhill for the bar.  JF Kicks was short staffed and Johnny had to get his 18 year-old son Tanner to help run the kitchen.  The stress of the bar has impacted Johnny's health he is supposedly $300,000 in debt.

During the Bar Rescue makeover, Jon Taffer decided to change the name of JF Kicks to Jimmy's, but the bar changed their name back to JF Kicks. Let's take a look at some information, reviews, and updates for JF Kicks since Bar Rescue came and made all of the changes to the bar (All reviews are post-Bar Rescue):

Positive Reviews:
  • "Now known as Jimmy's, we had a great time. Great music, food was awesome. Get the Bosco Sticks! I had the Philly Steak and Fries. Fries were crispy good. The Philly was the best. My date had the French Dip which she loved. The bar tenders Tiffany and Miguel were quick with the drinks. We had a great time."
  • "First visit post Bar Rescue. Subtle changes in decor and menu - all improvements, though nothing drastic. You still get what you see - local sports bar with decent food and drinks. Great service, good live entertainment. Food order took a while, and was less than hot when it arrived, so not sure if was a case of having an over-worked waitress, or she was slow on delivering - suspect the former. Prices, especially Happy Hour, are some of the best anywhere, and you can frequently find a discount coupon online. Will be back, hopefully for hot food."
  • "Food is good, drinks are plentiful, outside is big and warm with heaters. No complaints. Peanut butter pie is great!"
  • "Great food. Great atmosphere. Great staff....especially Nikki on the patio! Our go to spot!!"
  • "Good local hangout. Big patio area. Live music most nights Thurs- Saturday. Respectable happy hour with good call brands on the list. Big sandwiches at reasonable prices. Underrated pan seared chicken dinner. Attentive & friendly staff."

Negative Reviews:
  • "First time here and very disappointed. On a Sunday night especially. Service took too long even though the place was empty, chicken dry, and food not so good. Atmosphere and looks were great, it was the service and food that need a total revamp. Thought it could be much better, this place has potential."
  • "Food was not that well and beer was hot. This place had an episode on bar rescue. We thought it would be better."
  • "Went here with a friend for drinks and could hardly get served then waited way too long for our check after we asked to tab out."
  • "Incredibly rude, gossipy staff. Obviously trickles down from leadership, who from the looks of the reviews, takes ZERO accountability. Unwelcoming environment that I 100% will not be coming back to."
  • "I was not happy at all when I ordered a beer and it was NOT cold at all. We mentioned this to our server and she gave me a "cold" glass which in less than a minute went the same temperature of the beer BECAUSE IT WAS NOT COLD. 🙄 Super disappointed."

*Reviews from Yelp, TripAdvisor, Google

Other News and Links:
  • The Bar Rescue for JF Kicks happened in February 2022.
  • Here is a preview video of the episode from the Bar Rescue Facebook page
  • The bar was renamed Jimmy's with the sign saying Local Bar Great Sandwiches, but they quickly changed the name back to JF Kicks.  Jimmy was Johnny's brother who recently passed away.
  • Here is the JF Kicks website and Facebook page
  • The bar is having a watch party for the episode at JF Kicks. (Link)
  • Here is the Facebook page of Johnny (owner), Patrick (chef)
  • In response to a negative review left on their Facebook Page, JF Kicks blamed being short staffed for issues and said this about Bar Rescue, "Bar Rescue was a setback...don't always believe what you see on TV. Thanks for the great feedback." (Link)
  • Someone on their Facebook page asked what was the point of doing Bar Rescue if they were going to change everything back such as the name, and the bar responded, "The juice just wasn't worth the squeeze. We thought things were going to go much differently." (Link)
  • Someone asked Johnny if Bar Rescue rescued the bar, and he responded, "I wouldn't say that, lol....but they did film a show here." (Link)
  • Here are the reviews for JF Kicks from Yelp, TripAdvisor, and Google.


Jon Taffer decided to change the name of JF Kicks to Jimmy's, but the bar changed their name back to their original name of JF Kicks.  The bar has mixed reviews since the Bar Rescue makeover and it seems they have a lot of support from regulars.  The positive reviews mention the food, atmosphere and staff while the negative reviews talk about warm beer and bad service.  JF Kicks did admit to being short staffed, so I am sure that has an impact.  JF Kicks doesn't seem so happy with the Bar Rescue experience based on comments on their own Facebook page.

UPDATE 5/2022 - Right after the show aired, JF Kicks was addressing fans of the show asking questions on their Facebook page and responded, "our experience with BR just wasn't a good one. Having them rip out so much of the work I put in over the last 3 years and put in such a bland theme wasn't what we expected. We are a music and sports venue that serves great food. I loved the tribute to my brother but it just wasn't a fit for Kicks... And, yes, I didn't want my business to make me feel sad every day. I'm sure that wasn't their intention but I need more positivity going forward."

*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.

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