DES PLAINES, Ill. — Café la Cave in Des Plaines has been a popular destination for special occasions and fine dining for 46 years, but the restaurant is ending its successful legacy this year.

“We do any kind of corporate function, social function, showers, funerals, weddings, baptisms, rehearsal dinners. ” There isn’t anything we don’t do,” said Kimberly Sutter, the restaurant and banquet hall co-owner.

The Des Plaines staple is rich in family tradition.

“Our matriarch mother and Uncle John started this company,” said Gus Sutter, president of Café la Cave. “We’ve been here since kids and it’s one of the most difficult decisions we ever had to make.” 

Sutter and his sister Kimberly announced on Tuesday through social media that the restaurant was closing its doors, saying it was time to move on and spend more time with loved ones.  

“Our families have been neglected and we think we need to devote more time to them,” Gus Sutter said. “Working every single night, every holiday. The outpouring of support that we got over the last 24 hours has been overwhelming and we couldn’t be more grateful to the greatest clientele in the history of restaurants.”

Many on social media expressed that they have had wonderful memories at the restaurant and are sad to see them go. But the surprise announcement has also brought a lot of confusion and stress for bride-to-be Melissa Di Giacomo. 

“We booked our wedding shower last May for April 30 and I wish they would’ve called me or emailed me or sent me an official letter instead of finding out on social media,” she said.

Even though the owners have promised to give a full refund, Di Giacomo says invitations have been mailed and loved ones from out of town have booked flights for the wedding shower. 

Now, she feels her special event is in jeopardy if she and her fiance can’t secure a new place. 

“Hopefully, I can find a hall on the same date because a lot of my friends and family already know and have that date blocked off in their calendars to attend it,” Di Giacomo said.

The owners say they feel terrible about the cancellations prompted by the unexpected timing of their decision. They add that their hearts remain with their clients and are doing everything possible to connect the couple with another venue.

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“It’s breaking for them because we know that,” Sutter said. “When I said it was the toughest decision we could ever make, I can’t emphasize that enough.” 

There is no official closing date, but the owners say it could occur around mid-March.