BY SAMANTHA SMYLIE
The restaurant and bar Bibliophile which opened last October amid much fanfare has closed.
The book-centric bar and restaurant, 1644 E. 53rd St., had offered patrons the opportunity to purchase books from its shelf-lined walls to accompany their food and drink orders, which included cocktails named after classic works of literature. Its closure was first reported by Block Club Chicago.
The restaurant appeared to be open at the beginning of the month since Bibliophile’s Facebook account had recent posts. On Saturday, Sept. 7, the restaurant offered a deal on books and select cocktails to celebrate National Literacy Month. Another post from Sept. 3, asked customers to enter through the rear because the front entrance was undergoing a “face-lift”.
Michael Scott Carter, owner of Bibliophile, told Block Club Chicago that the restaurants closed due to a “downturn” in the restaurant industry, a recent injury and a split from his former wife, Fabiana Carter, owner of now closed Fabiana’s Bakery. Fabiana denied that the divorce caused the restaurant and bakery to close.
The restaurant was a joint partnership between Fabiana and her now ex-husband, Michael. Fabiana’s Bakery supplied baked goods for Bibliophile. In late August, Fabiana announced the closing of her bakery because “it has become increasingly expensive to run our retail bakery in its Hyde Park location.” She will supply baked goods to Philz Coffee and open another location on the South Side. Michael said that he will open another restaurant at the same location with a new staff but has not disclosed a concept or a date for when.