Dixie Kitchen owner Carol Andresen says that at age 71 this seemed like the right time for her to close the Church Street restaurant that’s served southern style breakfast, lunch and dinner to Evanstonians since 1998.

So a sign saying it was time to close is up on the locked storefront in the Galleria building at 825 Church St.

Andresen and her late husband Paul started their small chain with a shop in Hyde Park in 1994 that gained some fame after a then state senator named Barack Obama started dining there.

Andresen says the Evanston outpost never did as well as the Hyde Park site but that she enjoyed being part of the community here.

But with rent costs rising and traffic tailing off, she says she wanted to bring the business to a close while she could still pay the bills and meet payroll.

The Hyde Park location has been closed for a few years now, but a third site, in Lansing, Ill., will continue to operate under different ownership.

Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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  1. Too little space for all who wanted to eat there

    From what I could see their only problem was having enough space for all the people who wanted to eat there. Surely someone would be very wise in taking the business over. I can't think of a restaurant in Evanston that offers a more unique menu and concept—i.e. a market all to themselves.

    1. Engagement spot closing?!

      We had our first date there and got engaged at DK the night of Obama's inauguration. Guess my tshirt and the fabulous memories will have to be enough….

  2. No!

    If there was ever a time that Evanston City taxpayer $$$$ would have been put to good use this was it! I implore you, Evanston Now, please get and publish the cheese grit recipe!

    1. Dixie Kitchen was good but

      Dixie Kitchen was good but their biggest problem was having the great Le Peep next door.

        1. Yuck

          I cannot stand LePeep, their food is mediocre at best.  Dixie had the best breakfast in town, what a shame it's closed!

      1. LeComparison

        Agreed – to compare LePeep and Dixie is just..wrong…This is a terrible loss for Evanston.

  3. Thanks for good times and great food

    When I moved to Chicago in 2001 I searched for "sweet tea" and I think 3 options came up. The first I didn't care for but the second was Dixie Kitchen. It was love at first taste. I've been taking the red line / purple line up to Evanston about every other week since then. The Eggs Sardou and the Fried Green Tomatoes can't be beat. The staff have been wonderful and fun to interact with. I really hate that they've closed up. Thanks for all the good times and great food.

  4. Already missing Dixie Kitchen!
    One of my favorite places with the best fried chicken EVER and don’t even get me started on the cheese grits and corn bread. Loved this wonderful little restaurant that never failed to raise my spirits and satisfy cravings for home cooking.

    Miss it already!!

    Can I buy that gator that was up on your fish shack awning?

  5. Dixie Kitchen Still to reopen ?

    A month or so after closing there was a story that it would reopen and I know people thought that was to be "soon."
    By mid-March I thought it must have re-opened but saw an article that it had not but expected to April 14(?), 2016 
    but now can't find any update/confirmation.
    Any news ?

    1. Looks like it …

      The paper grocery bags that had covered the windows are down, and there's a sign up in the window saying they're hiring … so it looks like progress toward a reopening is being made.

      — Bill

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