Tempe, AZ

After 36 Years, Local Restaurant Forced to Close

Greyson F

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Another local restaurant has closed.Tim Mossholder/Unsplash

While the summer months often bring a nice boon in restaurant visits in other areas of the country, the same is not true for many areas around Arizona. Due to the extreme heat, as well as seasonal visitors returning home for the summer, local eateries often see profits dwindle during this time of the year. It has been an especially difficult July for metro Phoenix restaurants, as many long-time favorites and established brands have shut down. That number appears to be climbing still, as another local establishment has officially called it quits.

The Vine Tavern & Eatery is just the latest restaurant to close down this month. Located at 801 East Apache Blvd in Tempe, the building is instantly recognizable thanks to its A-Frame design. The log cabin-like construction makes it feel more at home in a remote part of Flagstaff or even in a Midwestern cabin. Of course, that’s actually where the origin of the restaurant began, as the first The Vine started in Iowa City back in 1970 as an Irish pub, serving up grub and cocktails to local Iowa Hawkeye fans. Eventually, management, as is often the case, decided to move to the Southwest. This led to the opening of The Vine Tavern & Eatery in 1986.

Much like the original, the Tempe location focused on serving food to local college fans, only this time instead of Iowa Hawkeye faithful The Vine served food to local Sun Devils. Six years later, a second location opened on the corner of Elliot and Rural. This location will remain open, but the original Tempe location has shut down for good. 

There was no reasoning given as to why the restaurant had closed. The Vine Tavern & Eatery has been quiet on social media over the last few months, with the last Facebook posts dating back to April of this year, with requests for kitchen staff. So, for now, fans of The Vine will need to head out to the Elliot and Rural location if they want to satisfy their tavern food fix. 

As for the building, there is no word yet as to what will take its place. The unique architectural design will likely make it a desirable destination for other restaurants, and the completely designed kitchen should only make it more enticing. However, for now, local ASU fans will need to find a new watering hole to hang out and catch the games at, as this location is no more after 36 years of business. 

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