Wednesday, December 28, 2005
Berghoff says 'auf wiedersehen'
"We share the sadness that many feel about the closing of the restaurant [ed. so don't do it!!! sell it!],'' Herman Berghoff, 70, who owns the restaurant along with his wife, Jan, said in a statement. "It's been an honor to be part of the fabric of Chicago, but after being in the business for over a half century, Jan and I feel that now is the right time to start a new chapter in our lives.''It's been around for 107 years, and serves the only edible creamed spinach in existence. I demand the recipe! And the beer! And dear lord, where will we get our Wiener Schnitzel now?
The restaurant's history is intermingled with Chicago's. It was such a downtown staple that after Prohibition ended in December 1933, the city issued The Berghoff Liquor License No. 1.
When I worked in the Loop, it was where we used to grab a quick one at the stand-up bar on our way to the El after work, or a quick lunch in the noisiest dining room in existence (marble floors echo something fierce).
Interesting place, too, in that the waiters go through a steamtable line for you and are lifelong professionals, many quite elderly. I remember one saying he followed the seasons, and headed to a restaurant in Miami for the winter.
First Fields, now this. There will be no reason to go downtown anymore -- except to get a cheese corn/carmel mix.
Oh, lord, please make sure Garrett Popcorn shops stay in business! Please!
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