As we reported last week, Nick’s House—the East Side dive formerly known as Y-Not III until Bar Rescue turned it into a ’70s-themed bar and Smirnoff vodka emporium—closed its doors for good in the wee hours of Sunday morning, exactly 18 months after its episode aired on SPIKE TV. Just hours after Nick’s House became the 32nd of the reality show’s 104 projects (32.7 percent) to call it quits, the network re-aired an episode depicting the program’s revitalization of another Milwaukee drinking establishment, followed by a new episode updating viewers on that bar’s present success.
Perhaps it was just a matter of coincidence or maybe it was done to offset any negative attention regarding the swift closing of Nick’s House, but if Sunday’s “Back To The Bar” update is to be believed, Campbell’s Irish Pub is doing great. During a “surprise” visit from the show, owner Patrick “Packy” Campbell says business has gone up about 74 percent (or $90,000) since bar expert Jon Taffer’s bestowed his trusted method of screaming, threatening to quit, eventually agreeing to stay, screaming more, and leaving a bunch of Guinness upon the struggling southside bar formerly known as Packy’s.
The show also seems to have repaired the strained relationship between Packy and his longtime pal/bartender Guppy. Campbell’s Facebook page seems to corroborate the positive sentiments for Bar Rescue. Other benefits include people no longer having to wear tape on their clothing when they’re filmed during staged “stress tests,” nobody is drinking fruit flies any more, and Campbell’s is evidently able to carry whiskey that’s not made by Bushmills now. Terrible concept aside, it is truly unfortunate that Nick’s House—a locally-owned business, after all—didn’t survive the Bar Rescue treatment. While we remain a tad skeptical of the reality of last night’s “Back To The Bar” update on Campbell’s Irish Pub, let’s hope things remain decent and the second Bar Rescue project won’t have to “SHUT IT DOWN!” any time soon.