Earnestine & Hazel’s owner selling iconic Memphis night spot

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. — A historic bar in downtown Memphis is for sale and looking for a new owner.

The iconic Earnestine & Hazel’s sits closed for now at the corner of South Main and G.E. Patterson, but when we stopped by Monday, we could still hear the faint sound of the juke box playing.

E & H is known to many in Memphis and those who visit for its soul burgers, jukebox and ghost stories.

Owner Caitlin Chittom announced on Facebook she made the difficult decision to sell the business, which opened in its current form in 1992 but had operated as a club and store in the 100-year-old building for decades before that.

She said the sale is not a result of finances or COVID, as they’ve remained closed for the safety of their employees. She’s selling it because it’s a constant reminder of what she says she lost — her dad, Bud Chittom.

She also said the ghosts and spirits of Earnestine & Hazel’s are real, and it’s become too painful to continue to operate.

The goal now is to sell the spot to a local operator who will keep the soul of the much-beloved bar in place. As the bar’s website says, Earnestine & Hazel’s is more than just a cool dive bar. It represents the history of Memphis and the soul, jazz and blues that echoed around it. 

It’s listed for $975,000, which includes the equipment inside like the jukebox and grill, as well as the rights to the business. 

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