The famed Golden Ox Restaurant & Lounge — which has operated in the Livestock Exchange Building in the West Bottoms for decades — is closing after dinner on Dec. 20.
Bill Haw, owner of the building, said the restaurant was behind in its rent and agreed to close.
“It was very much a mutual decision. They gave it a good honest effort but it just wasn’t working,” Haw said. “We have some exciting concepts for the space, some younger, brighter concepts. It was time to do something different.”
William Teel and Steve Greer, along with other investors, bought the assets of the restaurant in late 2003. Greer retired in August.
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“It was a good part of both of our lives,” Greer said.
Teel, who has been handling the day-to-day operations, declined to comment on the reasons for the closing but said he would announce the closing date soon. The restaurant has about 30 employees, many of them longtime workers.
Haw said he has had multiple inquiries for the Golden Ox space at 1600 Genessee St., Suite 100, and expects to sign a new tenant soon.
The Golden Ox opened on the first floor of the building in mid-1949, catering to ranchers and farmers who brought their livestock to the stockyards.
Over the decades it was known for its top-quality steaks — still aged and hand-cut — and its cattle-baron decor of dark hardwoods, wagon wheel chandeliers and burgundy carpet patterned with branding irons.