(keep reading to learn what happened)
Season: 1 | View All Season 1 Episodes
Original Episode Air Date: September 25, 2011
The Bar's Original Name Was: Angry Ham's Garage
Octane Bar and Grill Address: 2 Beacon St Framingham, Massachusetts 01701
Angry Ham’s Garage, later renamed to Octane Bar and Grill, was a Framingham, Massachusetts bar that was featured on Season 1 of Bar Rescue.
Though the Octane Bar Rescue episode aired in September 2011, the actual filming and visit from Jon Taffer took place before that.
It was Season 1 Episode 10 and the episode name was “Hogtied Ham’s”.
In this episode, Jon Taffer heads to Angry Ham’s Garage.
The bar is located in Framingham, MA.
The “Angry Ham” part of the name is a derogatory nickname for someone from Framingham, which is pretty funny haha.
I guess some people get offended by it, but I got a chuckle from the name.
Angry Ham’s Garage is owned by three guys, Tim Hanna, Lyndon Byers (LB), and Richie Olson.
Lyndon Byers is the most famous of the bunch – he’s a former professional hockey player in the NHL.
He played for the Boston Bruins for most of his career, so it’s fitting that we would then go on to open a bar in Framingham MA.
He also goes by L.B., which is how I’ll refer to him for most of this article.
Here’s a link to the Lyndon Byers Wikipedia page.
Because Richie and L.B. had some legal problems, the bar couldn’t get a liquor license with him at the helm.
As a result, the ownership was put solely in Tim’s name.
Not off to a great start…
The bar had poor management and angry neighbors because of the lack of control exhibited by the owners.
Tim Hanna makes the call to Jon Taffer and Bar Rescue to help save Angry Ham’s Garage from closing.
The bar owners don’t even know how much money they’re losing at this point, which is never a good sign.
Jon feels that changing the name is the only way to save the bar, but the owners adamantly refuse because they believe it’s important.
Eventually, Jon convinces them to make the change.
In addition to ditching the Angry Ham’s Garage name and changing the name to Octane Bar and Grill, Jon also remakes the bar and removes much of the existing decor.
As part of the changes, he finds out the staff was giving away thousands in free liquor.
A massive $2,807 in just four days!
That change, combined with Jon’s other pushing, was enough to get buy in from the owners.
Once the bar is completely changed, Tim and Jon went to the city government to get their buy in as well.
With the new decor and name change, the city officials are impressed and happy with the new direction of the bar.
However, during a lot of this, L.B. is missing and leaves the other Angry Ham’s Garage owners to deal with everything.
For example, L.B. missed the meeting with the city, which made Jon Taffer angry.
Eventually, L.B. shows up.
However, Jon Taffer says that Lyndon Byers can’t be part the new Octane Bar and Grill if they want it to be succesful.
Jon “fires” LB (you can’t really fire an owner) and tells him to leave.
When they relaunch the bar with the new Octane Bar and Grill branding, things seem to be looking up.
Customers are enjoying the new cocktails that were put in place by expert bartender Brian Van Flandern.
They also like the new food (especially the large portions), which came from the menu put in place by expert Chef Brian Duffy.
When Jon leaves, he seems to be on good terms with Tim and wishes him success.
So was the Angry Ham’s Garage Bar Rescue episode a long-term success?
Keep reading my update to learn what happened to this Framingham MA bar and if it’s still open in 2024 and beyond.
Octane Bar and Grill Update - What Happened Next?
Now that we’ve recapped the Octane Bar Rescue episode, let’s talk about what happened to the bar after Jon Taffer and his crew left Framingham, MA.
Things seemed to start off pretty well for the bar under the new theme.
At the six-week check-in with the Bar Rescue producers, we learn that sales at the bar have gone up by more than 25%.
This boost in sales enabled the bar to earn a profit for the first time in its existence.
However, the bar did have some issues.
For example, there was a fight at the bar where the doorman was hit in the head with a rock after trying to block a drunk person from entering the bar.
You can see this rock attack mentioned in this local news article.
This, along with other issues, led to the bar being suspended for a week.
Overall, it seems like Angry Ham’s / Octane had some issues with the local government.
Given that information, it might not be much of a surprise what happened next.
But first, let’s talk about some reviews…
Octane / Angry Ham’s reviews after Bar Rescue
Reviews for the bar were generally mixed after Bar Rescue.
Here’s a sampling of a few Yelp reviews that were written after the visit from Jon Taffer…
2 star review from November 2013:
Don’t go there if you want to have a relaxing experience.
I can foresee this place turning into biker redneck bar…
This place cannot even can handle a group of 7-10, the orders are messed up and the waitstaff are chattering away as if they don’t have customers.
I cannot believe the ‘bar rescue’ helped this restaurant/bar- it was a total waste of investment.
Only positive thing I got to say is that their pizza are yummy with considerable amount of grease.
2 star review from January 2014:
This place is one of my favorites.
Timmy is a cool guy and a cool owner.
This restaurant was featured on that show “bar rescue” and has picked up a lot of Business since.
The pizza is amazing.
The rest of the food is okay too.
I love the fact though that you can get almost any kind of food here.
Chinese, pasta, pizza to burgers.
The only issues I’ve ever had with the place is it can get way too loud whenever there is a band or DJ.
I like it but not when you can’t hear the person next to you.
If you want to watch the a Bruins play, THIS IS THE PLACE.
4 star review from December 2011:
Went there tonight at the suggestion of a friend.
I saw the Bar Rescue show and that they changed the name back and I was not expecting much.
I was pleasantly surprised.
I had the steak tips which were fantastic and a big portion.
The mashed potatoes were good and the broccoli was as perfectly steamed crunchy as could be.
They didn’t have ice cream on the menu but the waitress was able to come up with a bowl of it for me.
Service was great and the prices are fair.
The only downsides I’d mark were the salad, which seemed like it had been in the fridge too long, and the edamame which was just the beans in a garlic butter.
I was expecting it in pods as in a sushi place.
Is Octane Bar from Bar Rescue still open?
Angry Ham’s Garage / Octane Bar and Grill closed for good in mid-2019, which means that it survived for around eight years after the visit from Jon Taffer.
After Bar Rescue, Angry Ham’s remained open but under new ownership and a slightly different name.
At that time, the bar went by Angry Ham’s Grill and had a 3-star rating on Yelp.
Also, this Facebook post confirms that the ownership is new.
However, Angry Ham’s would eventually close and the bar has been replaced by a restaurant called Green Tea Restaurant.
Green Tea Restaurant has also subsequently failed.
After that, the old Angry Ham’s Framingham location was taken over by a restaurant called Beacon Street Bar And Grill.
Beacon Street Bar and Grill used the old Angry Ham’s Yelp page, so there must have been some connection.
However, Beacon Street Bar And Grill has also closed and, as far as I can tell, the location is currently empty.
In January 2021, there was a local news article that said a new restaurant would be opening in that location.
However, I couldn’t see any evidence of that happening as of 2022.
It’s possible that the Covid-19 pandemic got in the way of opening the new bar.
A Google Maps street view shot from April 2022 does make it look like something is moving in, but it doesn’t seem to be finished yet:
As of early 2023, it seems like the new tenant has moved in.
It’s now Café Belô, which seems to offer Brazilian food.
The Café Belô website is all in Portuguese, so I can’t understand the specifics.
Below, I’ve embedded the most recent picture of the old Angry Ham’s Framingham MA location in Google Maps street view, which does now show the new tenant (Café Belô):
As of 2024, Café Belô seems to be still occupying that location.
Overall, while Angry Ham’s Garage did survive for a long time after its Bar Rescue episode, it is now officially closed.
Still, I would say the Angry Ham’s Bar Rescue visit was pretty succesful because eight years is a solid run for any bar.
If you want to see another Massachusetts Bar Rescue episode, you can check out these posts:
Another nearby episode is Marley’s on the Beach / St. Michelle’s Beach Club in Warwick, RI.
And if you want to share your thoughts on the Angry Ham’s Garage episode, you can do so using the comments section below.
As always – thanks for reading!
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Last updated: 2024-01-28 06:09