3 Kilts, one of Denvers best gay bars, is closing in Capitol Hill

Denver’s 3 Kilts Tavern will close this weekend due to what owners have called increasing food, liquor and labor costs, according to a Tuesday post on the restaurant’s Facebook account.

The Irish Tavern, which opened its Capitol Hill location in 2021, occupies the former Barracuda’s space at 1076 Ogden St. Its inclusive atmosphere and Irish menu is backed by traditional Irish jam sessions and dance performances, as well as drag, comedy and others.

The tavern is closed this week through Thursday, Sept. 15, but will open for a three-day finale Friday through Sunday, Sept. 17 “for regular hours and a limited menu. … Brunch will NOT be served,” owners wrote on Facebook. “When food items run out, sorry, they run out.”

Owners did not immediately return requests for comment Wednesday.

When the business opened at its current location in 2021, and just before St. Patrick’s Day, owners wrote: “We’re just a few guys with a vision and want to give a space and quality of product that we stand behind to provide for you.”

The first location opened along the 16th Street Mall at 16th and Champa streets.

“No matter how we decorated or changed things up we couldn’t make it feel like home, like a relaxed neighborhood vibe,” owners told Out Front magazine in February. “It was just this big concrete space we couldn’t make it as welcoming and homie as this location feels. The rent was ridiculous there as well. We couldn’t be happier with the difference.”

However, after a “valiant effort to keep this feeling/space alive,” owners wrote on Tuesday, the Capitol Hill space will close. “Food cost is up, liquor cost is up, and labor costs are up. That combined with a lower than hoped turnout, we are really feeling it.”

The tavern this weekend will offer live entertainment and a DJ, according to the post.

The Denver Post named 3 Kilts Tavern one of the city’s best gay bars in a 2022 roundup, calling it an oasis for Cheeseman Park’s criminally underrepresented LGBTQ community.

“We love the friends and family that we have made over the past few years,” owners wrote. “We have met some incredible people and made some steadfast friendships. We love the memories we have made with you all. Knowing that we have created a space that many of you consider your home away from home, makes us so happy.”

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