CHICAGO — It’s the last weekend a popular Chicago restaurant will be open.

Nice weather for the final weekend of Tavern on Rush was the backdrop for packed outdoor seating as guests enjoyed food, drinks, and good vibes at Tavern on Rush, now closing for good on Wednesday. Loyal customers say they were disheartened to learn the end was coming much sooner than expected.

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“We thought we would have until the end of the year, and everybody was planning to come for one last hurrah during the holiday season,” said longtime customer Aldo Bottalla.

Kathy Stubblefield and Cheryl Scott were two regulars at Tavern on Rush.

“You know, we have our wine, we have our sliders and just catch up,” Scott said. “It’s just fun. We completely enjoy it and it’s really sad that it’s going to be leaving.”

Owner Phil Stefani announced earlier this year that after more than two decades at the corner of Rush and Bellevue, the popular restaurant would be closing after the building’s landlord did not renew their lease.

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A verbal agreement was made to keep the restaurant open until the end of the year but due to contractual matters, the restaurant will close on October 26. 

“I want to thank all of those loyal customers of 25 years and my staff, who really is the backbone of Tavern on Rush,” Stefani said. “It’s not the brick and mortar, it’s the staff.”