ROCK FALLS – The idea to open Whiskey Barrel Saloon was a long time in the making.
Raul Molina, who owns the new Rock Falls bar at 305 W. Second St. with his wife, Jackie, has been around the bar business his whole life, he says. His father was a lifelong member of the Latin American Social Club. Raul, too, used to be a member.
“I always wanted to do something on my own,” he said. “But I was involved in that. ... I’ve been wanting to do this for years.”
About 3 years ago, he and Jackie took the plunge and bought some property. More property went up for sale when a dentist’s office on the block burned down, Raul said, so they bought that property, too.
The massive bar they built there opened about a month ago.
“It’s different,” Raul said. “It’s something new downtown, something that was needed.”
The bar boasts vaulted ceilings, stonework on the walls, two billiards tables, video gambling, an outdoor covered patio, and a stage – where bands play every Friday and Saturday night.
There’s a kitchen, too, but it’s not up and running yet. When it is, Raul says, the place will serve standard bar grub: burgers, wings, tacos and the like.
It has a large grassy area outside where Raul hopes to build a fence. Within it, he envisions picnic tables and a place to play bags.
Molina says they wanted to do a soft opening before doing a big grand opening, just to be sure they had their feet under them. He says that will probably be next month.
Check out the business online at facebook.com/whiskeybarrelsaloon305.