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Saturday, April 27, will be last day for Chicago's Café Selmarie

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CHICAGO (CBS) -- Lincoln Square's venerable Café Selmarie announced Thursday that Saturday, April 27, will be its last day in business.

Café Selmarie, 4721 N. Lincoln Ave., first announced its plans to close in September. Owner Birgit Kobayashi is set to retire.

In the week leading up to the closing date, Café Selmarie will keep its regular hours for the bakery counter and dining room – though menu and product offerings will be reduced as the restaurant winds down its inventory.

The restaurant said breakfast and lunch will be first-come, first-served, and strongly recommends reservations for dinner.

Breakfast and lunch will still be available to the public on Thursday, April 25, and Friday, April 26, but dinner will be reserved primarily for friends and family, A reservation waitlist for the public will be available for those days.

On Saturday, April 27, brunch service and bakery counter will be open at 9 a.m., with the last seating at 2 p.m. and closing time at 3 p.m. After that, the lights go out.

Online ordering and carry-out service will be limited and may be unavailable on the last day, Café Selmarie said.

"We want to thank you all for the outpouring of love and support during this transition and throughout our 40 years. There are not enough words to express our gratitude," the restaurant said in a Facebook post. "We hope to see all of you in these last days to help us celebrate and close out what has been a wonderful, magical era of Selmarie in the Square!"

Café Selmarie celebrated 40 years in business last September. The café opened in September 1983 – when Ronald Reagan was in his first term as president, and Harold Washington had been mayor of Chicago for only five months.

Kobayashi founded Café Selmarie with the late Jeanne Uzdawinis, whom she had met as a neighbor on Giddings Street. They started Café Selmarie just down the street from where they lived with their families at the time, the restaurant said in a September news release.

The name is a portmanteau of the two women's middle names – Birgit Selma and Jeanne Marie.

Café Selmarie started out as a small storefront with just a few tables serving pastries and coffee, but broke down walls in 1999 – ultimately to double its size, the restaurant release said. The café has been an iconic part of Giddings Plaza in Lincoln Square for many years – and even had the first espresso machine in the neighborhood, the release said.

Café Selmarie has also long been revered for its patio for al fresco dining and displays of works from local artists.

Uzdawinis died in 2017. Kobayashi said in September that it was time for the next chapter.

The Café Selmarie name and recipes will not be sold, the restaurant announced in September. But first reported Andrew Pillman – the owner of the Lincoln Square Tap Room next door – plans to open a new venture, Willow Café & and Bistro, in the Selmarie space.

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