Toucans Oceanside Bar before Bar Rescue
In 2004 John Franke, along with his best friend Jamie Hawkes, opened Toucans Oceanside Bar. Situated 40 minutes away from Hollywood and Miami, the bar survived the wrath of two hurricanes and was successful through the years.
Things took a sudden turn when Hawkes tragically lost his son and the grief caused a massive change in the owner’s behavior. He lashed out at everyone including Franke which widened the rift between the two best friends until they stopped talking altogether. Eventually Toucans was neglected and the employees were left to do as they please while the owners gave each other the cold shoulder, and the patrons weren’t exactly attracted to a bar with this kind of problem. To add to their growing list of woes the two owners were also divorced by their wives.
With $250 grand worth of debt and a friendship turned into rivalry, the owners called for Jon Taffer and Bar Rescue before this hurricane destroyed Toucans Oceanside Bar once and for all.
Toucans Oceanside Bar on Bar Rescue
Toucans Oceanside Bar was positioned in a boardwalk where almost ten thousand tourists strolled in a single day. Sadly, the bar was barely able to attract clientele unlike the successful Latin establishment Mamacita’s next door. Since they were technically tourists Taffer and his experts perform the recon themselves.
The bar’s interior was not fit for a beach environment as it had white walls, Irish bar chairs, and retro diner tables. The trio ordered everything on the menu and the bartenders weren’t exactly familiar with a few of the drinks they sold. Taffer then had 60 patrons come in to test the bar while the experts roamed in their respective areas of proficiency. Chef Nick Liberato saw how the lone kitchen staff of Toucans named Logan was frustrated and outnumbered by the sudden pile of orders while working in a very unsanitary environment, and later on the employee cracked under pressure and left his job. In the bar area mixologist Kyle Mercado noted a lot of mold on the equipment, much to the horror of the customers, while bartender Kali literally gave away booze.
Taffer came back the next day with Logan back in his post and the place a lot cleaner than before. Mercado instructed the bartenders with the recipes of the cocktails they didn’t know so the fiasco last night won’t happen again, and Liberato taught Logan and Hawkes how to properly open oysters to maintain its juiciness which was contrary to what Toucans served. During the stress test Kali showed considerable improvement but the two owners still refused to properly communicate with each other. The test was ended prematurely when rodents in the kitchen made their presence known by running around the floor.
After the test Taffer called in a professional exterminator to get rid of the rats in the kitchen. The Bar Rescue host then sat with the two owners and helped Hawkes move on from the mourning and honor his son’s memory by being successful. With Hawkes and Franke ready to move forward Taffer introduced his new concept for the bar which focused on making it authentic among the other establishments in the area. Liberato’s offering for the new menu involved creating a special butter and cheese sauce that topped off the oyster dishes, while in the bar area Mercado whipped out colorful tropical cocktails which didn’t use the typical orange and pineapple and instead utilized red dragonfruit, kiwi, and starfruit.
36 hours later Toucans Oceanside Bar was renovated to Bonny & Read’s, the name derived from two famous pirates Anne Bonny and Mary Read and Taffer reminded the employees that this was different from his previous encounter with another pirate tavern as Bonny & Read’s fit the place. The façade was splashed in light blue with a huge black sail on the roof that made the bar a lot visible from a distance. The interior’s walls were painted brown to look like they were wooden, plus new furniture and pirate-related décor made the place livelier. Bonny & Reads offered signature cocktails on a unique glass, took orders with new POS systems, and Taffer’s own mobile app BarHQ provided the owners a host of powerful management tools.
Toucans Oceanside Bar Now in 2018 – The After Bar Rescue Update
The place is still open today and they merged the bar’s old and new names to become Bonny & Read’s Toucan Hideout. Hawkes and Franke have also mended their friendship and are now close like brothers.
Reviews on both Facebook and Yelp were mostly positive. People praised the bar’s food and atmosphere while customer service earned them both positive and negative feedback. In 2017 the four and five-star feedbacks have become more consistent with very few low ratings in between.
Bonny & Read’s Toucan Hideout expanded their menu with breakfast options from Friday to Sunday, plus other bites like sandwiches, hushpuppies, and burgers. They also host events with games and giveaways, and show live sports on TV. Apparently they do not have live music and there is no indication that they will be having one in the future.
The bar is also looking for experienced servers to join their crew. If you think you fit the bill then click here to apply.
The bar maintains an active Facebook page which you can visit by clicking here, and click here for their Yelp page. They have an inactive Twitter page and the Facebook page of Toucan’s Oceanside Bar is still around but is no longer maintained.