It’s a story worthy of five-time Emmy-Award-winning anchor Ron Burgundy and Tits McGee. An investor who teamed up with the owners of Will Ferrell-themed bar Stay Classy New York claims he’s owed $120,000. By the beard of Zeus!
In a lawsuit filed Wednesday, Michael Galkovich alleges that the owners of the Lower East Side bar, Zachary Hosier and Brian Link, agreed to make him a managing partner and a 70-percent owner of the bar’s parent company if he paid them $120,000 and won approval from the State Liquor Authority. Galkovich put in $60,000 up front, but he never got the chance to become an owner, the suit alleges.
When both parties agreed to this contract, Stay Classy had already closed its New York location in favor of a nationally touring pop-up bar. The vacant space on Rivington Street would soon be turned into an ’80s themed bar called GB85, also owned by Hosier.
GB85’S website describes how Galkovich, who is listed as the bar’s manager, became involved:
Mike Galkovich approached Zach [Hosier] about possibly working together on a bar project. Zach had already been working on a 1980s themed bar for NYC and decided if Mike could manage the space while Zach traveled with his other bar pop ups that he would be able to keep the space on Rivington. Mike having previous experience managing bars decided to sign on and run the day to day operations.
Galkovich’s attorney, Lee Jacobs, said his client agreed to invest $120,000 in the bar at 174 Rivington, “whether it was going to reopen as Stay Classy or as something else.” In addition to his initial $60,000 investment, Galkovich made $60,000 in “capital improvements,” but he was never allowed to make the last payment of $60,000, Jacobs said. Jacobs declined to explain why Galkovich was prevented from doing so, or why he didn’t seek approval for the corporate change from the State Liquor Authority, as mandated by the contract. “What he’s looking to [do] is to either get his 70 percent or to get the return of his money,” Jacobs said.
During the year that it was open, Stay Classy was a “millennial-aged bro” hot spot that had drinks created by Gia Farrell. You might remember her from her song “Hit Me Up” on the Happy Feet soundtrack, but probably not. Hosier and Link’s Tim Burton theme bar, Beetle House, remains open in the East Village.