Tuesday, May 28, 2024

The Black Sheep Update – What Happened After Bar Rescue

The Black Sheep before Bar Rescue

The Black Sheep was opened in 2007 in Cheviot, Ohio, courtesy of local firefighter Scott Scherpenberg with the help of his cousin Greg and uncle Tommy. Locals were drawn to the new watering hole and earnings skyrocketed to $70 grand a month.

bar rescue the black sheep owners
The owners Greg, Scott, and Tommy

However Scherpenberg thought the bar business could run on its own and turned his focus on his firefighting and carpet installation jobs, and the absence of a manager led to The Black Sheep’s neglected state which drew away patrons and made the bar bleed money. As the bar was in a location flocked by dozens of other similar establishments, customers had no problem in scouting for other better venues to drink their fill.

The owner was forced to make loans to try and salvage the losses but this act only ended up with him buried in $700 grand worth of debt with no significant changes to The Black Sheep. With no other options left on the table Scherpenberg decided to call for Jon Taffer and Bar Rescue to help save the Sheep before it’s too late.

The Black Sheep on Bar Rescue

Taffer’s wife Nicole entered the bar to do recon while the Bar Rescue host observed along with his two experts Diageo mixologist Peter O’Connor and chef Brian Duffy. The trio witnessed some of the bar’s shortcomings like serving cold food and the chef holding a cat litter scooper. Taffer himself walked into the premises and saw how “generic” the bar was despite its claims of being a standout.

bar rescue the black sheep old facade
The old facade

During a meeting with the owner Taffer learned about Scherpenberg’s other jobs and loan problems. It was also revealed that Greg and Tommy were oblivious to the bar’s dire situation. Afterwards the two experts followed and performed an assessment of The Black Sheep.

At the bar area O’Connor noticed not only the unkempt coolers but also the improper storage of glassware which, given the bar’s humidity, could possibly lead to bacterial incubation. Inside the kitchen the smell alone was enough for Duffy to tell that things were just as worse in here which was revealed through his hands-on inspection of the equipment. Kitchen staff Billy was forced to do extensive cleaning throughout the night or else risk getting axed by Taffer.

The next day O’Connor introduced the bartenders to the new drink menu and to a slew of premium booze. He also taught them several unique cocktails that were not present in the other bars. Duffy had to do extensive training to the kitchen staff to make up for the four years of doing things incorrectly with no management to guide them. The food menu was revamped to include a mix of German and Irish dishes to make The Black Sheep a bit more unique. Taffer met with the owners to discuss the financial situation and Scherpengerg’s relatives agreed to help the bar.  For the upcoming soft opening Taffer assigned Scherpenberg to the kitchen, Tommy to the bar area, and Greg to the floor.

A huge flock of customers herded into the bar and the employees were tested to see how their mettle fared. The influx of patrons overwhelmed the bar area and the glassware was not enough to accommodate the dozens of thirsty souls, and the pressure sparked a profanity-laden clash between O’Connor and Tommy as the customers watched. Tommy walked out of the bar and the bartenders did a good job in holding the fort. In the kitchen the staff cooked the new dishes without much difficulty but Greg and Scherpenberg had trouble serving the right food to the right customer. Taffer threw the white towel up in front of everybody which signified that The Black Sheep was far from ready for relaunch. Tommy returned to the bar and apologized for the outburst.

Two days into the relaunch Taffer subjected the employees to more training.  Scherpenberg admitted that the soft opening’s failure rested squarely on the management’s shoulders. Taffer revealed to the trio the losses incurred by the bar’s rates and proposed that prices have to be jacked up. Scherpenberg then promoted Billy as kitchen manager, bartender Natalie as operations manager, and employee Stephanie as promotions manager. To make The Black Sheep the bar with the best beer Taffer deployed O’Connor, Scherpenberg, Billy, and Stephanie to Ireland to visit the Guinness Brewery.

bar rescue the black sheep new facade
The new facade

Taffer had the bar redesigned with the help of designer Nancy Hadley. He wanted the bar’s façade to be different as the establishments in the area almost looked the same. The patio was turned into a beer garden and the interior was designed appropriately to encourage the flow of patrons. The trip to Ireland pushed the relaunch two more days away which gave the team enough time to renovate the bar.

In Ireland O’Connor and the trio met with the Guinness Brewmaster Fergal Murray and learned from the master himself how to properly pour the perfect glass of beer. Back in Ohio Taffer revealed The Black Sheep’s new incarnation which was now The Public House Bar & Grill. The bar area was equipped with a new countertop, premium liquor bottles, and a POS system that is also connected to a printer in the kitchen. The décor on the walls featured sheep on green pastures and Guinness-related posters.

A pipe band heralded the opening of The Public House Bar & Grill. The owners welcomed a flood of customers into the bar, and outside patrons enjoyed the new beer pong table. A month after the relaunch Scherpenberg reported a 21% increase in profit and the trio of new managers thrived in their roles.

The Black Sheep Now in 2018 – The After Bar Rescue Update

The Public House Bar & Grill is still open with a good amount of positive reviews on Facebook and Yelp. Praise went to their menu items especially the burgers, the accommodating staff, and the atmosphere. They also host live music and flatscreen television sets were installed around the bar area.

The bar was also used as a forum in several charities and non-profits such as the fundraiser last November 2016 in support of 13-year-old Caitlin Neelley. A percentage of the earnings of some of their menu items were donated to the fundraiser, plus raffles and live entertainment were held in the establishment during the event.bar rescue the black sheep logo

Scherpenberg made mentions of the rescue in the bar’s website and on their logo which indicates Bar Rescue. Some of the  posts in the page frequently tag the Jon Taffer and Bar Rescue official pages.

The bar maintains an active Facebook page where they post updates and promos. Click here to visit the page. You can also visit their official website here.

Anthony Coyle
Anthony Coyle
I write about anything and everything that catches my fancy, but mostly I try to provide the answers to the questions our readers ask every day. I'm also the guy who's always glued to an LCD screen of some sort.



Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here