On-trade

Dead Rabbit founders part ways

The Irish founders of 'The Best Bar in the World' The Dead Rabbit in New York, Sean Muldoon and Jack McGarry, are parting ways after a nine year partnership.

 

In addition to launching The Dead Rabbit Irish whiskey Jack McGarry (left) and Sean Muldoon went on to launch their book From Barley to Blarney, a Whiskey Lover’s Guide to Ireland.

In addition to launching The Dead Rabbit Irish whiskey Jack McGarry (left) and Sean Muldoon went on to launch their book From Barley to Blarney, a Whiskey Lover’s Guide to Ireland.

The Ardoyne pair founded The Dead Rabbit in Lower Manhattan’s Water Street in 2013 and worked to make the Irish bar one of the city’s most popular pubs.

Both Tales of the Cocktail and The World’s 50 Best Bars named The NY pub The Best Bar in the World.

Following this the Dublin Liberties Distillery teamed up with the pair to create The Dead Rabbit Irish Whiskey, “a Super-Premium Irish whiskey”.

Following a fire at the bar, believed to have started in the kitchen, which razed the four-storey bar and restaurant in 2018, the duo rebuilt the premises and went on to launch their book From Barley to Blarney, a Whiskey Lover’s Guide to Ireland.

Now the partnership is splitting-up, with Jack McGarry remining on at The Dead Rabbit while Sean Muldoon hopes to open a new venue in South Carolina called Hazel and Apple, along with the pub’s Beverage Director Jillian Vose.

But Sean will retain his shares in The Dead Rabbit while the bar’s parent company has invested in his Charleston, South Carolina, venture according to Drinks International.

In a recent interview with the trade publication he stated that, “It’s the end of one chapter and the beginning of another special chapter”.

Jack McGarry intends bringing in Crown Creative in Belfast to replace Sean in covering much of the work he carried out at New York’s most famous Irish pub – which Jack is now in the process of expanding across the US.

“By the end of year three the plan is to have six locations including New York,” he told Drinks International, “So it’s pretty aggressive.”

A New Orleans outlet is signed-up in that city’s French Quarter and will launch in time for Mardi Gras next year. He’s also at the final stages of signing for a third Dead Rabbit outlet in Austin, Texas, which will open later next year.

“We’re insistent on a six-month separation,” he told the magazine, “We’re looking at most major metropolitan cities – Tier 1 cities primarily, dropping into Tier 2 and 3 after the three-year period.

“I want to be at each for three months, pre- and post-[opening] to make sure the culture is there, the finish and standards – and really lean in with the market partners.”

According to Drinks International, “McGarry’s vision for future Dead Rabbits is that they’ll further pull away from the traditional, retrospective nature of international Irish bars.

‘We want to be the beacon of what Ireland is today,’ he says”.

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