Burt's Place, the beloved suburban deep-dish pizza place in Morton Grove, has been closed since the middle of July. This week, management changed the phone's answering message, citing an unspecified health issue as reason for the temporary shutter.
"Thank you for calling Burt's Place. We are currently not open for health reasons. We hope to get that rectified. Thank you very much for your understanding, and we hope to be seeing you soon. Thank you."
Owner Burt Katz and his legendary long, white beard opened Burt's Place after he sold Pequod's in 1989. Burt's caramelized crust has earned the obsession of legions of fans who will call ahead and preorder their pizzas before arriving to dine in. Long waits for the 30-seat restaurant are common. The acclaimed pizza joint has received recognition through the years from many outlets including Saveur and on Anthony Bourdain's Chicago stop on "No Reservations."
Long-time Burt's Place employee Buddy Roadhouse confirmed that a family health issue was reason for the closure. He commented further on the closure in the same post on Chicago food website LTHForum:
"Just to reiterate the new phone message, we are all deeply sorry for any inconvenience caused to folks who may have made reservations far in advance. Believe me, everyone involved would rather be taking care of you than dealing with the current situation. Nothing more to add at this point. I'll post more news when it becomes available and relevant."
It's not the first time Burt's Place has temporarily closed. Katz's health forced Burt's Place to shutter for a time in 2008 after surgery. Check back later for any news on the reopening.