Phoenix, AZ

Troubled Mexican Restaurant Forced To Close

Greyson F

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Local Mexican restaurant and bar has been forced to shut down.Tim Mossholder/Unsplash

Restaurants already have enough trouble on their own staying open. Often it feels as if the world is against any establishment lasting, due to the already thin margins most restaurants pull in on a daily basis. These locations don’t need problems of their own doing to drag them down even further, and yet that is exactly what happened to one Phoenix restaurant and bar, resulting in its closure. 

The Golden Margarita opened in Phoenix’s trendy Roosevelt Row less than two years ago. During the day the restaurant served Mexican food, and by nightfall, it converted over to a bar and nightclub. However, the restaurant never got off to a strong start and has been plagued by continued problems that eventually resulted in the restaurant’s announced closure. 

Almost from day one, The Golden Margarita developed a less than stellar reputation. Noisy crowds and loud music pumped out of the establishment, resulting in numerous noise complaints and citations. For an area of town that already specializes in restaurants, bars, and clubs, for one particular location to receive noise violations it has to take audible levels above and beyond. 

The restaurant didn’t only face volume complaints though. There were also several shootings connected with patrons leaving the restaurant. In the end, there were enough violations and complaints stemming from the community that the Phoenix City Council unanimously voted back in February to deny the restaurant from renewing its liquor license. The loss of a liquor license for a bar generally means certain death, and that is exactly what happened with The Golden Margarita

Despite all of the negative press, restaurant management continued to promote itself as the hip, trendy place that people who don’t like the establishment should visit. Flouting the established city regulations ended up costing the business its ability to serve alcohol, and now, as the city of Phoenix maintained its ruling to strip the restaurant and bar of its liquor license, The Golden Margarita had no other choice but to shutter its doors. 

The vacant space, located at 330 East Roosevelt Street, likely will not remain vacant for long. This area of town does see turnover, but the spaces are rarely left open for long. The Golden Margarita itself took over for Paz Cantina at the beginning of 2020. What could prove slightly problematic for any new business though is often a liquor license can be transferred from one business to the next in the sale of the property. Because The Golden Margarita lost its liquor license it will likely take some extra leg work for a new establishment to have it restored. 

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