(keep reading to learn what happened)
Season: 5 | View All Season 5 Episodes
Original Episode Air Date: March 5, 2017
The Bar's Original Name Was: The Dugout
Press Box Address: 950 W Addison St Chicago, IL 60613
The Dugout, later renamed to The Press Box, was a Chicago, Illinois bar that was featured on Season 5 of Bar Rescue.
Though the Dugout Bar Rescue episode aired in March 2017, the actual filming and visit from Jon Taffer took place before that.
It was Season 5 Episode 16 and the episode name was “Struck Out at the Dugout”.
The Dugout is a dive bar located right next to Wrigley Field in Chicago, IL.
Ed Cressy is the owner and was originally the landlord, but when the previous owners couldn’t pay, he kicked them out and took over in 2011.
That means he’s been running it for about five years at the time of the Dugout Bar Rescue episode.
The bar follows the baseball season schedule, and when it is over, the customers leave.
It does fine during the baseball season, but loses $30,000 to $40,000 during the off-season. Not a recipe for success.
Emily is a bartender who gets upset with the way Ed runs the bar as he drinks a lot and is overwhelmed.
The bar is in severe debt and is losing more money every day.
Jon Taffer brings in Phil Wills, a mixologist, and Chef Ryan Scott to help rescue The Dugout.
While watching the footage, the men see Ed and Emily arguing.
They also notice the bar is in a populated area but doesn’t stand out.
That night they have four bartenders working, and one of them is a shot girl.
A local sportswriter goes and spies on the bar for Jon.
Him and his friend order a Long Island Iced Tea and a shandy.
The men then notice a big jug of Ed’s signature cocktail called Hot Pussy. Yeah…no comment.
Emily tells the spies about the drink, and they are less than impressed.
When they ask for a burger, the spies are told they only sell them during game days, so they order a mac and cheese and ranch salad instead.
The kitchen footage showed unsanitary practices and flies.
Jon has his experts immediately enter the bar and inspect the kitchen.
In the kitchen, Ed is cooking on a very greasy fryer.
Phil makes a bartender make him a fishbowl Long Island, but it tastes terrible.
The bartender then tells Phil they have no recipes or proper training.
Phil confronts Ed, who is uncaring. Jon then comes into the bar, hoping to get a reaction from Ed.
The kitchen is shut down, and Ryan is made to throw out all of the food left in there.
As Jon Taffer leaves, he is given the middle finger by Ed. Way to be grateful to the guy trying to save your business.
The next day Jon returns to the bar for a meeting.
Mike is introduced.
He cooks part-time at the bar and is Ed’s nephew.
Emily admits that Ed doesn’t do much leading in the bar, and she also reveals she wanted a management position, but Ed won’t accept any help.
Jon is not ready to renovate the bar due to Ed’s poor attitude.
After the stress test, Jon will decide whether he wants to stay and help the bar.
Phil throws out Ed’s disgusting signature drink, and the staff claps. Ed did not clean the kitchen.
He also put the food thrown away back in the freezer. Mike, Ed’s nephew, is forced to clean.
Phil tells the staff they need to make simple drinks to get them out faster.
The bartenders and Ed are trained on a whiskey ginger drink.
After the kitchen is cleaned, Ryan shows the staff how to make a Chicago-style hotdog.
Ed begins to drink at the start of the stress test and is confronted by Phil.
Mike is cooking the food in the kitchen, and since there is no food runner, Ed has to do the job.
Ed gets very confused, but the bar is doing a good job.
The test is shut down because Ed wouldn’t smile and was dragging everyone else down.
The next day Phil congratulates the bar staff and trains them on making bulk drinks for busy game days.
Emily is scared that Ed will toss out everything Jon has given them during the rescue.
Jon and Ed have a discussion, and Ed leaves.
Jon doesn’t know if he can save the bar and tells the staff to search for new work.
Jon remodels the bar but does not invite Ed to the relaunch.
As part of the changes, Jon Taffer renames the bar from The Dugout to The Press Box.
Ed comes to the relaunch, and Jon says he will leave and the rest of the staff quit.
Customers are invited in for drinks, but the relaunch is canceled.
Jon went after exchanging curse words with Ed.
So yeah, it was definitely one of the more entertaining Bar Rescue episodes in terms of the drama factor.
Now, let’s get an update on the Press Box.
This is one of the more complicated Bar Rescue updates we’ve encountered, so you’ll definitely want to read what happened next.
Press Box Update - What Happened Next?
Now that we’ve recapped the Dugout Bar Rescue visit, let’s talk about what happened next after Jon Taffer and his crew left Chicago, IL.
However, what happened next is a complicated story, so let’s break it down.
But first, it’s worth noting that the Pussy Shot is back at the bar, which should give you a pretty good idea of how the rest of this update is going to go!
Is The Press Box from Bar Rescue still open?
As of 2023, The Press Box / The Dugout is still open. However, it’s doing so under the original The Dugout name.
After the episode, owner Eddie Cressy moved The Press Box into a new location upstairs, while opting to change the lower location back to its original name of The Dugout.
Here’s what The Dugout Chicago location looks like in the most recent Google Maps street view update:
Now, The Press Box is marked as closed on Yelp, while The Dugout is still open.
Apparently Ed did keep the Press Box sign, though.
Maybe that’s to help people who saw the Bar Rescue episode.
The Dugout doesn’t have very many Yelp reviews, but so far they’re sitting at a mediocre 3-stars.
One reviewer said it appears like the owner still doesn’t care about running a great bar, while another reviewer gave it 5-stars.
I’ll share some examples of reviews below.
The owner was also candid about his experience with Bar Rescue, saying the following:
It was a complete nightmare, what he put me through.
He accused the Bar Rescue crew of using low quality paint and said he’s already removed some of the new food menus from the menu.
Though the owner was unhappy, Emily, one of the bartenders, was happy with the Bar Rescue crew.
She posted this on Facebook during the episode’s premier:
I want to thank bar rescues entire team for everything.
I bitched a lot when I worked at the dugout and i feel bad for every person that had to hear about it every time they were around me.
It made me miserable because I was working for this guy, doing everything I could thinking of, to get told I’m doing one thing right and all I ever got was the negative.
When rescue came in what it was for me was a confirmation that I wasn’t crazy, stupid, or hat I wasn’t trying hard enough.
Ask anyone who talked to me when I worked there I almost drove myself crazy thinking I was failing at something I felt I was so good at.
When in actuality I was making him more money then the off season before.
Sales went from around 800 to 1000 on Fridays and Saturdays to 1200-1400.
Which for a 99 occupancy bar in a charming dingy basement I’m was proud of.
I love my job I get paid to talk and celebrate with people in the best city there is and right in the heart of #wrigleyville.
Here’s a screenshot of the Facebook post in case it gets deleted:
Per the comments, Emily has moved on from working at The Dugout and now works nearby at another baseball themed bar named Sluggers. Or at least she did for a time…
Despite the owner’s unhappiness, for now it appears that The Dugout is still open.
However, they did experience some more issues in 2020 during the Covid-19 pandemic restrictions.
The bar was caught on camera flouting the health regulations, though Ed Cressy responded and said that he wasn’t actually breaking any rules.
You can see a piece from the local news about this in the video below:
Press Box / The Dugout reviews
Here’s a sampling of a few reviews that were written after the visit from Jon Taffer…
3 star review from May 2021:
I expected what I saw on Bar Rescue and that’s what I got.
I’m a huge Bar Rescue fan and I just had to come to the Dugout to experience it for myself.
Saw Ed drinking at the bar just like on the show, our bartender was super sweet but the drinks were definitely horrible.
I’m a little surprised that he kept the name The Dugout but also kept “Box Press” sign.
I definitely would not come back but it was fun to experience.
3 star review from March 2021:
My husband and I came here on business.
We stayed in Oak Brook but traveled to this bar and we were not disappointed.
We had the most memorable time, the owner chatted with us and I must say, he is not the villain portrayed on Bar Rescue.
We own Real estate in Chicago and we plan to always stop in when our itinerary permits.
I recommend you try the money shot and the rizzo.
The bartender named Stephanie was polite and fun.
There is no judgment at this establishment
3 star review from March 2017:
Went to the Dug Out tonight, Saturday, 3/25/17.
Had a great experience.
The Bar Rescue episode caused us to go there.
We met Ed and his staff and they were great.
Ed was a great host and is nothing like the Bar Rescue made him out to be.
The place was clean, the beer was ice cold and affordable and we had a great time.
It is interesting that so many reviewers say Ed is a nice guy – it’s a good reminder that Bar Rescue is a reality TV show and the producers can make people look however they want.
Overall, The Dugout seems to still be a success, even if it’s not using the name that Jon Taffer gave it.
Thanks for reading!
What did you think about the Press Box Bar Rescue episode? I'd love it if you shared your thoughts on the episode in the comments below!
You can also click the buttons below to share this post!
And don't forget to check out all of the other Bar Rescue updates.
Watch Bar Rescue Episodes at Amazon
Last updated: 2023-03-23 05:25