Kieran Folliard, co-founder of several popular Twin Cities watering holes, has sold his bars to focus on his whiskey business, according to a report by the Star Tribune.
Folliard has sold his stake in Kieran's Irish Pub, The Local, Cooper, and the Liffey, and he told the Star Tribune that he plans to focus on the whiskey business. Earlier this year, he swapped out much of the Jameson Irish Whiskey at his four bars for his own brand, called 2 Gingers. He's now eyeing opportunities for marketing the product and selling it to liquor stores and other bars.
Why must he choose one or the other? Liquor laws prohibit the ownership of both a distillery arm and a retail outlet, like a bar, the Star Tribune explained.
Folliard reportedly wants to get his whiskey on store shelves by late September and is considering changing the brand's name. He's looking at the regulatory aspects of expanding the whiskey business; right now, the whiskey is made in Ireland and bottled by Phillips Distilling in Minnesota.
Peter Killen, a longtime business partner of Folliard, acquired Folliard's stake and will serve as CEO of the four bars; Folliard declined to disclose the terms of the transaction, the Star Tribune reported.
Folliard, who opened his namesake bar, Kieran's, in 1994, told the Minneapolis newspaper that customers won't see significant changes at the four bars after his exit.