Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Heller's Bakery has closed in Mt. Pleasant due to rent increase

Heller's Bakery

A local mainstay is no more. The Post reports that Heller's Bakery, a community stape since 1928, has closed. The bakery, with its iconic mural and cool old metal and neon sign, has served up coffee, pastries, cakes and such for a long time. I often liked to stop by for a donut after going to the Mt. Pleasant Farmers Market.

The Post says that the rent, which was already $7,500, would have increased shortly, and the bakery was having a tough time paying bills already and had fallen behind. The building's owner, Jean Lujan, also owned the bakery in the past, but didn't sound too sad to see it go:
“I like them and, in many ways, they’re fine tenants,” she said of [owners] the Duni brothers. “But I didn’t want to be struggling for the rent. A bakery is a very hard business to run. I’m not sure there’s room for that kind of place anymore.”
[...] 
A new tenant may want to change the mural, Lujan said, “and I wouldn’t balk, although I don’t know if the neighborhood would balk.”
Despite the lack of sentimentality, it's an interesting point. Le Caprice Bakery at 14th and Meridian is popular and wonderful, but I think most of their business is coffee, sandwiches and pastries to go, rather than bigger things like cakes, which Heller's seems to do a lot. And I've heard mixed things about the cakes and other baked goods from friends and on Yelp. (In fact, I have a few friends who hate Heller's, but I've never fully understood why.)

It sounds like the business is dead, there's no mention of them reopening somewhere else. And it's too bad.

Photo by Afagen

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