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Local

Honey-Jam Cafe in Batavia closes

Honey-Jam Cafe in Batavia closed Tuesday. The restaurant is part of the Portillo Restaurant Group, and Honey-Jam Cafe restaurants continue to operate in Downers Grove and Bolingbrook.
Honey-Jam Cafe in Batavia closed Tuesday. The restaurant is part of the Portillo Restaurant Group, and Honey-Jam Cafe restaurants continue to operate in Downers Grove and Bolingbrook.

BATAVIA – The Honey-Jam Cafe in Batavia has closed, restaurant officials said Thursday.

Patty Sullivan is a spokeswoman for the Portillo Restaurant Group, which owns Honey-Jam Cafe. She said the restaurant closed Tuesday partly because of increased competition in the area and partly because of changes with the Affordable Care Act.

“The decision was difficult and was not made lightly,” she wrote in an email. “Unfortunately, the competition in the area had increased, and other restaurants were offering a breakfast menu at a price that made it difficult to compete with and remain profitable.”

Sullivan went on to write that the restaurant was not able to lower its prices without a negative effect on quality and service – “both of which Mr. [Dick] Portillo was not willing to compromise.” She added that the additional costs and changes that are necessary under the Affordable Care Act “would have undermined our efforts to turn the store around.”

The breakfast and lunch place opened at 521 N. Randall Road in August 2010. The greeting on the restaurant’s answering machine says “we regret to inform you that this location has closed” and says calls and messages left at that location will not be returned. Honey-Jam Cafe locations still are operating in Downers Grove and Bolingbrook, according to the answering machine.

Batavia Mayor Jeff Schielke said he was surprised to hear that the restaurant closed because he was there twice in the past 10 days and the restaurant seemed very busy.

“I’m kind of dumbfounded by it, really,” he said. “They’ve been such a good business to have in town, a good staple and was very popular with people in town. I’m sure there are going to be a lot of people disappointed.”

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