, with locations in Elmhurst and Chicago, are closing for good, according to a post on Facebook at 5 p.m. Friday, July 27.
"We have been given opportunities to progress our career beyond the bakery in an environment that is better for our family," the post says. (Full text of the message below.)
Loyal fans of Bleeding Heart had hoped the Elmhurst location would stay open, but the answer was no. "All of our locations are closing since we run them all," Bleeding Heart responded on Facebook. "We chose not to sell. It's a complicated process and we'd rather just put it to bed and start the next chapter in our life."
The company has not been without internal controversy, most of which the owners are tight-lipped about.
In April, the store announced—also via Facebook—that it would at 1010 North Blvd. At the time, the reason stated was that many of their regulars started going to the Elmhurst store, drawing business away from Oak Park.
At the same time, a partnership with a pair of restaurant owners who operated the West Town bakery location apparently turned into a battle for control. Bleeding Heart Owner Michelle Garcia (her husband, Vinny, is co-owner) said she believed they were becoming victims of a small-scale corporate takeover, unbeknownst to the new partners. The Garcias cut ties with that location.
Also last spring, a number of former disgruntled employees started a Tumblr page titled, Bleeding Heart Bakery Sucks. The page includes a post July 27 that says their bakery equipment is for sale on Craigslist. Another commenter said the company will be out of business before her wedding, for which Bleeding Heart pastries were ordered.
The bakery only recently opened its newest location at 1351 W. Belmont Ave. in Chicago. The Elmhurst store hasn't made it a year, .
While patrons may never know all the details of what went on behind the scenes at Bleeding Heart, they do know one thing: They have until Aug. 5 to grab all the cake balls, lemon bars and chocolate chip bacon cookies they can.
It will likely be some time before their loyal fans can move on.
"Noooooooooooo! The saddest day ever!" wrote one Facebook fan.
Here's Bleeding Heart's July 27 Facebook message in its entirety:
"It is with a heavy heart that we announce, today, that Chicago's Bleeding Heart Bakery is closing on August 5th, 2012. We have had 9 amazing years, we have learned so much and have met some of the most awesome people. This is not a choice made out of haste and it certainly is not because we have given up or are in anyway being made to shut down. Quite the opposite! We have been given opportunities to progress our career beyond the bakery in an environment that is better for our family. So, this is a sad day, but one we feel is necessary for our children's happiness and the health of our family. We thank all of you for the support you have given throughout the years and we hope to continue to hear amazing things about the local and sustainable food movement in Chicago."