A cryptic sign went up at the vacated storefront at 5318 N. Clark Street late last year with a drawing of a bakery truck surrounded by the text: “coming soon.” The space had been vacated since August when Debbie Sharpe closed the Andersonville location of her The Goddess and Grocer cafe. In a neighborhood that lost its iconic 88-year-old Swedish Bakery a year ago, what could fill the void? Bobby Schaffer, the opening pastry chef of Grace, is stepping up to the challenge as he plans to open Lost Larson in May.
Grace was one of two three-Michelin-starred restaurants in Chicago before it suddenly closed in December. While Grace was a fine dining destination, Schaffer tells the Tribune that he wants to create a relaxing community hang out. He’ll pay homage to Swedish Bakery by baking one of its most-popular offerings, princess cake with green marzipan. Schaffer will mill the flours at the bakery. He said that will produce better flavors for his breads.
Schaffer worked with former Grace chef Curtis Duffy while working as pastry chef at Avenues at The Peninsula Hotel off Michigan Avenue. As followed Duffy to Grace when it opened in 2012. He left Grace for Upstate New York’s Blue Hill at Stone Barns, one of Eater National food critic Bill Addison’s most-essential restaurants in America. Schaffer also worked at El Poblet in Spain. In a profile five years ago in Time Out, he said he had dreams of owning a chocolate shop. Lost Larson will also offer chocolate bars and bonbons, according to the Tribune. They’ll also have a dog-friendly patio.
Follow Lost Larson’s progress via Instagram and stay tuned for more coverage.