The Brooklyn Brothers
Before Madison Garden operated at 152 N. Madison Ave. in Richmond, stood Kennedy’s Hardware. In 1967 the infamous Kroger fire next door did do damage to the Kennedy Hardware building but, just as any resilient Kentuckian, the owners rebuilt and continued business at the premises until 1982, whe Tom and Steve Thilman purchased the building to begin making their dreams into a reality.
Some say the Teamster’s kicked them out of NYC for being too bad-ass, and others say the brothers were looking for fun in the nation’s number one party school at the time, Eastern Kentucky University. But no matter what the real story is, Tom and Steve opened Madison Garden as a small beer garden with nickel drafts and pickled eggs, along with a number of pool tables and dart boards.
What was once known as the town “Biker Bar”, Madison Garden started to grow when the Brothers started grilling up burgers, brats, and dogs out back by the horseshoe pits. As the food service grew, a kitchen was added, then a new back room structure known to locals as the EKU dome. The menu was developed from old Italian- American recipes handed down from the Thilman’s relatives and Richmond, Kentucky loved the taste of New York.
Serving up great food with Southern Hospitality and New York attitude has made Madison Garden Bar and Grill a staple in the community as, Madison Garden is now the oldest, continually running Bar and Restaurant in Richmond Kentucky.
People from all over the state come in to enjoy the great food, atmosphere, live music and excellent selection of Craft Beer, Bourbon, and hand crafted cocktails. Many generations of patrons have now come through our doors and we are so thankful for the long support of Richmond, Eastern Kentucky University, and the citizens of Kentucky as a whole.