HYDE PARK — After just one year in business, Bibliophile, a “boozy bakery” in Hyde Park, closed on Sunday for a variety of personal and professional reasons, owner Michael Scott Carter said.
Citing his recent divorce, leg injuries and a “downturn” in the restaurant industry at large, Carter said the spot at 1658 E. 53rd St. would be closed indefinitely.
“It is far easier to just be removed from the restaurant industry at this time,” he said. “You can’t have businesses not hitting their targets and keep them open.”
As recently as Saturday, the restaurant’s Facebook page was promoting a deal on books and drinks in celebration of National Literacy Month. That deal was to be held the same day the restaurant closed.
Five days before its closure, a post informed customers of a “facelift” in progress for Bibliophile’s entrance.
Staffers were aware “at least a couple weeks ahead of time that [the closure] might happen,” Carter said. He intends to reopen the restaurant at a later date with “a new team.”
When asked if there had been any issues with the existing Bibliophile staff, he said it was “just more that due to a lot of personal changes, it just wasn’t tenable to be in restaurant life.”
While the recently closed Fabiana’s Bakery was Carter’s joint partnership with his ex-wife Fabiana Carter, he had sole oversight of Bibliophile.
Fabiana Carter denied Michael Scott Carter’s assertion that the bakery’s closure was also related to their divorce. She said she could not comment on Bibliophile, as it wasn’t her operation and the two businesses weren’t related.
“We used to be married, but that doesn’t mean anything about the businesses,” Fabiana said.
Fabiana’s Bakery did supply Bibliophile with desserts, Fabiana confirmed. Bibliophile’s Kentucky butter cake with bourbon and chocolate cake with a dark chocolate liqueur were among the items supplied by the bakery, according to a 2018 Eater Chicago article.
Fabiana Carter said the bakery’s shutdown was due to rising operational costs in Hyde Park, as she said in a press release at the time of its closure.
“It doesn’t have anything to do about rent, it is just the finances altogether,” Fabiana said. “It’s hard to run a restaurant … with the costs of employees and rent and supplies. It’s a tough business and I guess we are both tired of everything.”
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