Downtown Irish pub plans November opening; hiring to start

By Jodi Schwan

It’s going to be a couple of months before the Guinness starts flowing at The Blarney Stone Pub.

But hiring starts next week, and a peek inside the downtown space shows it likely will be worth the wait.

“It’s coming along really well,” said Russ Wanner, operations manager and the restaurant’s partner in Sioux Falls. “We’re doing a nice setup.”

Construction crews are gutting three former storefronts on Phillips Avenue north of 12th Street, including Touch of Europe, and turning them into Blarney Stone.

These openings to Phillips Avenue will allow an outdoor dining feel for Blarney Stone.

The restaurant will have several distinct spaces, including a dining room with a bar done in dark woods, a large corner fireplace and garage-style doors in one room that open to Phillips Avenue.

Downstairs, the former Touch of Europe space is being renovated and will include a bar, along with booth seating and the full menu from upstairs.

“We’re using reclaimed wood, and we tried to save as much of the original brick as possible,” Wanner said. “I think we got probably one of the last buildings on Phillips that needed to be renovated, so we feel very lucky.”

He said the look of the restaurant will be similar to its locations in West Fargo and Bismarck, N.D. The Bismarck location also is downtown, and Wanner said he’s encouraged by the activity he sees in Sioux Falls.

“It’s such a vibrant downtown, people walking around all the time, and I always call it the mini Minneapolis because that’s kind of what it is,” he said.

The plan is to open Blarney Stone in mid-November, but hiring starts Oct. 2. Applicants can walk in from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday.

Wanner said he plans to hire about 115 employees in all positions, including servers, bartenders, cooks and dishwashers.

Downtown Irish pub plans November opening; hiring to start

It’s going to be a couple of months before the Guinness starts flowing at The Blarney Stone Pub. But hiring starts next week, and a peek inside the downtown space shows it likely will be worth the wait.

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