(keep reading to learn what happened)
Season: 4 | View All Season 4 Episodes
Original Episode Air Date: December 7, 2014
The Bar's Original Name Was: Y-Not III
Nick's House Address: 1854 E Kenilworth Pl Milwaukee, WI 53202
Y-NOT III, later renamed Nick’s House, was a Milwaukee, Wisconsin bar that was featured on Season 4 of Bar Rescue.
Though the Nick’s House Bar Rescue episode aired in December 2014, the actual filming and visit from Jon Taffer took place before that in early 2014.
It was Season 4 Episode 9 and the episode name was “Spoiled Brat Party” .
Note – if you’re looking for the other Y Not Bar Rescue episode, check out our Y-Not Sports Pub / Forbidden Pub update, which covers the Everett Washington bar.
Y-NOT III is a bar located in Milwaukee, WI.
Tony DePalma is the owner of all the Y-Not bars. However, Tony’s son Nick is in charge of Y-NOT III.
As you can tell from the name, this is the third Y-Not bar.
Personally, I think the name sucks and I find it confusing, so I’m not really surprised that Y-Not III made an appearance on Bar Rescue.
Maybe you disagree, though – let me know in the comments if you think it’s a good name.
If you’re wondering where the name comes from, it’s Tony’s name spelled backwards. T-O-N-Y changes to Y-N-O-T. So it actually does make some sense if you know the backstory.
Tony’s daughter Monica owns a bar called Monica’s on Aster, and his son, Nick, was given the keys to Y-Not III after his graduation.
However, Nick doesn’t have the skills his sister does to run the bar.
To try to grow the bar, Nick has started promotions to bring in customers like burlesque shows.
It’s not really working, though…
Nick says about six months are left in the bar if things continue this way.
Y-Not III is a large bar with two floors, so there’s plenty of space for customers if the bar can bring them in.
Monica, Nick’s sister, has put $20,000 of her own money into the bar, so she also has a vested interest in it being successful.
The episode starts with Monica talking to Jon Taffer in the car while they watch footage from inside the bar.
The bar is out of control. Customers routinely receive free shots from the bartenders, but Nick avoids confrontation.
This is lost money for the bar, so he really needs to find a way to put his foot down.
Jon Taffer comes in and asks Nick the last time he made money, and Nick says it’s been a while.
Nick closes the bar so Jon can have a staff meeting.
Nick has had many shots at the bar that night, so he’s not quite sober.
Monica tells Jon Nick has asked for money multiple times over the years.
Jon leaves the bar after calling Nick pathetic, which is classic Jon style.
If Nick wants the bar to be successful, he needs to start taking responsibility and ditch the frat party atmosphere.
Jon brings in expert mixologist Mia Mastroianni to help rescue Y-Not III.
She teaches the staff a drink called Mint Collins.
She also teaches them The Creamsicle.
Mia tells the team to order a drink, and Nick will make all of them.
Nick’s heart isn’t in it, though.
Jon tells Nick he needs to prove himself, or Jon will not remodel the bar.
There are empty glasses all over the bar because Nick hasn’t kept up with them.
Nick finally begins to show effort.
Angelica, the bartender, is doing a great job, and Jon tells her she has the capabilities of turning the bar around.
Jon tells Nick he has failed and orders him to shut down the bar for the evening. Nick says he is over the bar business.
Nick tells the staff he will step back from the bar, and Angelica takes over as manager.
Mia then meets with the team to show them how to use shakers correctly.
She teaches them Smirnoff Sours and shows them how to make a shot with a small slice of watermelon.
After the renovations, Jon meets with the staff to show them the improved bar.
As part of the remodel, Jon Taffer changed the bar’s name from the weird Y-Not III name to Nick’s House, which is much easier to remember.
The theme of the bar is the 1970s.
Nick opens the bar for the first time since the renovations.
Angelica gets a bit overwhelmed but ends up handling the night excellently.
The bar staff is thriving. Nick is much happier and hands the keys over to Angelica.
Nick's House Update - What Happened Next?
So – was the Nick’s House Bar Rescue episode a success? Let’s talk about what happened after Jon Taffer left Milwaukee.
At first, things were going great.
Six weeks after Taffer’s visits, the bar’s sales had more than doubled, which is huge for business.
This extra revenue has allowed Nick to pay back his sister the $20k that he borrowed from her, so it should also improve family relations.
The bar had mixed reviews – around a 3.5 star rating on Yelp – but business generally seemed to be going ok.
Here’s a sampling of some of the Nick’s House bar reviews that were written after the visit from Jon Taffer…
3 star review from March 2015:
I’ve only been here a handful of times (maybe 5 in my 7 years of living in Milwaukee) both when it was the YNot III and now.
It’s a great little dive bar, very townie with a devoted crew of regulars.
Lately when I go it’s on Sunday when they have $4 liters of tap beer (my spouse gets Newcastle and I tend to get whatever is new but the house draft is probably my favorite).
The bartenders are always nice, but it’s definitely a place that appears to be more fun if you are a regular.
I know there was some hullabaloo about it being on one of those rescue shows, but not having been a consistent patron, I’m not entirely sure what changed. I just know I love having it as an option in my neighborhood.
3 star review from April 2016:
This place is just fine! I’ve never seen this place busy, even on a weekend.
Great place to go if you want to meet a friend for a drink and catch up for a while. You won’t have to shout!
Bartenders have always been super friendly.
Bathroom is an experience and definitely helps you remember you are at a dive bar!
Not a bad place but not a place that immediately comes to mind when I’m going out for the night.
1 star Yelp review from February 2016:
Had high expectations coming from Bar Rescue.
Terrible atmosphere for an east side bar.
Went in on a Thursday night, there were about 10 people total not including an awful band located upstairs.
Bartender made the worst rum & Coke I’ve ever experienced while staring at his phone the entire time. Worthless bar too close to north Ave.
While business was up and the reviews were decent (for the most part), it would not be enough to save the Nick’s House Milwaukee location.
Is Nick’s House from Bar Rescue still open?
Nick’s House closed for good in 2016, about two years after it appeared on Bar Rescue.
The bar closed because the building was sold to a real estate investment firm who quickly demolished the building to turn it into a sculpture garden.
You can see pictures of the demolition in this article from The Milwaukee Record.
When I checked Google Maps street view in 2022, the lot still seemed to be empty, though. It just looks like a parking lot for nearby buildings.
I’m not sure if that’s because Google Maps hasn’t updated its photos or if there was some delay putting in the sculpture garden.
Either way, I’m confident in reporting that Nick’s House from Bar Rescue is permanently closed because you can’t reopen a bar in a gravel lot!
What about the other Y-NOT Milwaukee bars?
As I mentioned earlier, Y-NOT III was the third Y-NOT bar in Milwaukee.
So are the other bars still open?
Well, Y-NOT I was closed long before the Bar Rescue episode, as far as I can tell.
However, Y-NOT II is a very succesful bar that’s still open in 2022, with a 4 star rating on its Yelp page.
This is the bar that Tony managed (not Nick), though Tony is now technically retired.
Y-NOT II has actually hosted some pretty impressive musical acts, including Violent Femmes and Atmosphere.
In general, Tony has a pretty interesting story – it would’ve been cool to see more in the Y-NOT Bar Rescue episode.
If you want to learn more about Tony’s backstory and Y-NOT II (and see lots of pictures of the bar), you can check out this great article from OnMilwaukee on Y-NOT II’s 50th anniversary (yes – 50 years open!).
Nick and Monica are also featured in that article.
Monica’s bar, Monica’s on Astor, is also still open as of 2022. It has a 4 star rating on its Yelp page.
Final thoughts on Nick’s House / Y-NOT III
Nick’s House lasted for a couple of years before closing down because the property was sold (and later demolished).
However, Tony DePalma, the owner, has a very interesting backstory and his Y-NOT II bar is still open, and has been for over 50 years.
Nick’s sister, Monica, also still has her bar open.
So, it seems like the family definitely knows a thing or two about running a succesful bar.
If you want to see some another Wisconsin Bar Rescue episode, you can check out my update for Campbell’s Irish Pub / Packy’s Bar in Milwaukee.
For another nearby episode, Dirty Rooster / Lake Marie Lodge is right across the border in Antioch, IL.
Thanks for reading!
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Last updated: 2022-10-25 06:20