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February 02, 2021

The Draught Horse Pub & Grill closing after 20-year run as Temple hotspot

The university and bar failed to reach a new lease agreement

Food & Drink Bars
draught horse closing Google/Street View

The Draught Horse Pub & Grill, located at 1431 Cecil B. Moore Ave. on Temple University's campus, will close its doors by Feb. 17.

The Draught Horse Pub & Grill, a longtime gathering spot for Temple University students, will permanently close when its lease expires later this month. 

The sports bar, which sits on the edge of the North Philadelphia campus, failed to reach a new agreement with the university, according to Mike Frost, the Draught Horse's director of operations.

"We just couldn’t come to real terms on an effective long-term lease and that's the gist of it," Frost told the Philadelphia Business Journal on Monday.

Relocation is a possibility, but he said there are no specific plans to do so in the near future. 

The Draught Horse opened in 2001 at 1431 Cecil B. Moore Ave. — a short walk from the Liacouras Center, the university's sports arena. It will close by Feb. 17, marking the end of a 20-year-run. 

The Draught Horse is owned by Stable Investment Group, a hospitality company that also owns two restaurants in New Jersey. In October, Frost told the Business Journal that the pub had only generated 30% of its pre-pandemic sales. 

The bar is among several businesses located near Temple that have been severely affected by the coronavirus pandemic, according to PhillyRetailSpace. Lee's Hoagie House, located across the street from the Draught Horse, is closing. The pizza shop Pazzo Pazzo has filed for bankruptcy and changed ownership.

Temple University invited more students and staff back to campus for the spring semester, but most classes are still being offered online, limiting the number of people visiting nearby businesses. A variety of social distancing, COVID-19 testing and contact tracing measures are being enforced on campus. 

In addition to Temple's health and safety guidelines, restaurants are still under restrictions that limit indoor dining to 25% capacity. Some outdoor dining is allowed too, but the cold weather, including two snowstorms this winter, has made that option less attractive to diners. 

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