NORTH CENTER — Customers looking for their regular caffeine fix at Julius Meinl received a jolt of a different sort Monday morning — the Lincoln Avenue cafe is suddenly, and permanently, closed.
Signs announcing the closure were taped to the cafe's windows and doors, and the interior had already been stripped of furnishings.
Meinl's Southport cafe and coffee bars on Ravenswood Avenue and Ontario Street are still open, according to spokesman Nathan Fellows.
"We are sad to see our Julius Meinl Lincoln and Montrose location close," Fellows said in a statement. "We as a company believe it is time to focus our efforts on the other three Julius Meinl stores, our wholesale division that sells to hundreds of restaurants across the U.S., as well as growing into other potential neighborhoods."
Julius Meinl has occupied the corner of Lincoln and Montrose, 4363 N. Lincoln Ave., since 2008. In 2011, there were rumblings regarding a conflict with the building's landowner, but Fellows had no comment on that subject.
Of the neighborhood, which had "become like a family to us," Fellows said, "Julius Meinl North America is honored by the support we have received through the years."
Staff will be placed at other Meinl locations, he said.