Taffer’s take on pulling from the neighborhood’s past: “In some cases, on Bar Rescue, we’ll attach ourselves to something that has local significance. That can give it authenticity. But it doesn’t necessarily make it cool -- that’s the bar’s job.” Having spent a great deal of time there, however, we editors can in fact say that Hot Bird is cool.
Michael Banas (co-owner): “Basically, we sat around a table and were coming up with bar names that were not working for us. Then we decided to use animal names, kind of a joke, and we were talking about the cow. We got on the subject of cow tipping, and then the Tipsy Cow came up. The customers got behind the name, they love it. We even have vendors asking us, ‘Wait, what's your name?’ We tell them, ‘The Tipsy Cow,’ and they say, ‘Oh man, that's so perfect.’” [Thrillist: Did you ever go cow tipping?] “It was fun, it was something to do.”
San Francisco, CA
Jason Kirmse (co-owner): “We had hopes of opening a traditional Chinese hand-pulled noodle shop. (Co-owner) Cyrick Hia knew of a noodle master in the town of Taishan in the Southern Guangdong province who he had been visiting on his yearly trips to China. We decided he’d be the noodle chef so we went to China for a month, courting him to come back and open up shop in SF. After three trips, an immigration attorney, and a really bad visa interview, the noodle chef was denied his golden ticket and we came back empty handed. As we were on the way to the airport, Cyrick noticed a crane taking a sign down off a building that said ‘胖天使’ or ‘pàng tiānshǐ,’ which means ‘fat angel.’ So we decided that would be the name of plan B: a beer and wine bar named Fat Angel.”