Restaurants come and restaurants go. Research shows that about 60 percent of eateries don’t make it even a year. Restaurateurs also change concepts, retire without successors, suffer disasters and lose their leases.
We’re very sad, though, when long established favorites shut their doors. Chicago is losing two more places that will be sorely missed.
La Creperie in Lakeview has announced that it will close in late August. Germain and Sara Roignant opened this classic French bistro known for Breton-style crepes back in 1972.
After Sara Roignant died in 2002, the couple’s son, Jeremy Roignant and daughter-in-law, Yasmina Ksikes, took over management of the restaurant. Anne Spiselman Crain’s Chicago Business reports that they have sold their building and expect to relocate to Los Angeles, while Germain Roignant retires to his native Brittany.
We wish them all well, but where are we going to get Breton crepes now?
The Gosses have been contributing to Chicago’s restaurant scene since 1983, when they opened their previous, more upscale American restaurant, Zinfindel, a pioneer in the use of local, sustainable ingredients. Zinfindel closed in 2002 just before they opened West Town Tavern, an informal neighborhood spot known for comfort foods. Susan Goss is the chef, while Drew is the wine director.
Susan Goss is also the founder of the annual “Girl Food” benefit dinner, hosted at the restaurant, which highlights Chicago’s top women chefs while raising money for hunger relief. It’s to be hoped the event will survive this move.
The couple said in their Facebook farewell that they intend to “explore other opportunities.” We fervently hope that means another Chicago restaurant.
The Chicago dining scene is a poorer for these losses.