Topper Grill and Pub to no longer serve alcohol

Topper Grille and Pub is the latest addition to WKU’s dining options on campus. Topper Grille and Pub is located on the first floor of the Garret Conference Center, caddy-corner to Panda Express. It will serve pub style food such as burgers and pizza, but will not serve alcohol. The floor is made out of the recycled floor from the bowling alley that was formerly located on the third floor in DSU. Lex Selig/HERALD

Emma Collins

After an inspection by the Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control, Aramark has withdrawn an application for a liquor license which would allow Topper Grill and Pub to sell alcohol.

According to Steve Hoyng, resident district manager at Aramark, in order to procure a liquor license, an establishment must be able to sell a certain percentage of food to a certain percentage of alcohol. Because both the pub and Garrett Food Court share a kitchen, the ABC was concerned that the required ratio of food to alcohol sales would not be met.

“We found out on Wednesday night that the lawyer stated our application for the liquor license would be denied,” Hoyng said.


Aramark was also informed that if their liquor license application was rejected, then any future attempts to attain such a license would be jeopardized. To avoid this scenario, they decided to withdraw the application before it could officially be denied.

“If we did not pull our application, then any future endeavor at WKU dealing with any kind of alcohol would be put in a negative light,” Hoyng said.

The Topper Grill and Pub will now function as an alcohol-free restaurant, and WKU students will be unable to purchase alcohol anywhere on campus for the time being.

Student reactions to the news have been mixed.

“I feel like they went back on their word because they were saying they were going to have alcohol and now all of a sudden they’re not,” Louisville junior Kayleigh Profumo said.

Louisville junior Ellie Smith expressed similar disappointment.

“It’s just like another food place,” Smith said.

Both Smith and Profumo said they did not believe they would trek up the hill to eat at the pub since it will no longer be serving alcohol.

Elizabethtown sophomore Isaac Vanmeter disagreed.

“You’ve got DSU that’s got all the good places to eat and then you’ve got Garrett which is okay, but they don’t have the variety DSU does,” Vanmeter said. “So if there was a place up there close to my classes, then I’d probably go up there and eat even if they didn’t serve alcohol.”

According to Hoyng, the ABC would only approve the application for the license if the pub had its own kitchen separate from the one used by Garrett Food Court.

There are currently no plans to add a separate kitchen to the pub. However, according to Hoyng, future campus construction plans include the renovation of the entire Garrett Conference Center which could mean changes may one day be made to enable a future application for a liquor license to be approved.

Topper Grill and Pub is still set to open in a few weeks once the construction has been completed and a license from the Health Department has been received.