Meet The Brothers Behind Philly’s First Black Owned Brewery


January 31, 2024

In West Philadelphia, brothers Richard and Mengistu Koilor, have brought a unique experience to the city with Two Locals — Pennsylvania’s first Black-owned brewery, Eater Philadelphia reports. They are carving a lane in an industry where Black brewers make up less than one percent of the total in America, according to the Brewers Association.

The lack of Black brewers and breweries was the driving force behind the Koilor brothers’ mission. As Richard Koilor states, “We want to be an example that even if you have a passion where you are the minority, you can carve out a path for yourself and do it on your terms and with your own flavor, style, and grace.” Their aim is not just to provide a unique beer but also to pave the way for more Black brewers and businesses in an area heavily gentrified.

The Koilor brothers’ journey into brewing began in 2016, experimenting with home-brew kits in their personal backyards and kitchens. However, it was the racial uprisings of 2020 that propelled them into the spotlight. A connection with FCM Hospitality founder Avram Hornik led them to brew out of Mainstay Independent Brewing in Northern Liberties, marking the beginning of their public journey.
After that, the Koilor brothers honed their beer’s flavor profiles and expanded their marketing and branding outreach. Today, Two Locals stands not too far from where they grew up.

Two Locals officially opened its doors on January 26th, offering regular service from 12 pm to 9 pm on Sundays to Thursdays and extending hours to 12 am on Fridays and Saturdays. The brewpub encourages walk-in entries, with plans to accommodate both small and large parties soon.

Cover Photo: Brothers Richard and Mengistu Koilor, owners of Two Locals Brewing Co. / Credit: Two Locals


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