Stone Fox, an ambitious Andersonville restaurant that opened in February, has closed after 10 months. Owner Cy Oldham cited financial woes as the reason for the shutter at 5721 N. Clark Street. The news is troubling for some veteran business owners, as Oldham is no novice. She’s the owner of Fat Cat in Uptown and was part of the group behind Silver Cloud Bar & Grill in Bucktown.
Oldham and company made major renovations in the space that formerly housed Pork Shoppe. They modernized the dining room and spruced up the bar with hopes of making better use of its large outdoor patio space during warmer months. The food had a global flair that set it apart from other bars along Clark Street.
“Unfortunately, financially we just couldn’t make it going into the worst time of the year,” Oldham wrote via email. “I absolutely love the people of Andersonville and Edgewater, they were very supportive.”
“We had a great six weeks in the summer but unfortunately it wasn’t enough to sustain us through the winter,” the Facebook post reads. “It breaks our hearts to have to close our doors. The sudden closing was to insure we could pay our entire staff in full and meet all of our obligations.”
Freezing temperatures aren’t kind to Chicago businesses, which is why Chicago Restaurant Week takes place in January and February. Last year, Chicago’s City Council passed a law to extend outdoor dining season into the winter. The ordinance sought to encourage outdoor dining, equipped with heat lamps, to bring in more customers. Of course, several restaurants transform their patios into ice skating rinks or utilize heated plastic bubbles to draw patrons during chilly months. Utopian Tailgate, a new bar in Old Town, is offering discounts to customers who dine outside in low temperatures.