Downtown spot 9 Bakery and Lounge closes

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Citing health concerns, 9 Bakery and Lounge owner Matt Schuler announced Monday he has closed his downtown eatery. Photos by Hilary Snow.
Citing health concerns, 9 Bakery and Lounge owner Matt Schuler announced Monday he has closed his downtown eatery. Photos by Hilary Snow.

The kitchen is closed at downtown donut shop and dining establishment 9 Bakery.

The unique eatery–part breakfast house, part tapas bar–closed on Sunday, according to Ed Wolverton, president and CEO of Wilmington Downtown, Inc.

“They actually put business up for sale last December and were unable to find a buyer,” Wolverton noted.

Owner Matt Schuler also announced the move Monday night on 9’s Facebook page, citing declining health as the reason for shuttering the spot.

A painting crew works to redo the front of the old Dirty Harry's spot, now Beer Barrio.
A painting crew works to redo the front of the old Dirty Harry’s spot, now Beer Barrio.

“Over the past two plus years, I have been blessed to work with the best staff I have ever known,” Schuler wrote. “Through good and bad, I have enjoyed every moment I have shared with the 9 crew. Unfortunately, my health has become a major concern and I will have to close the restaurant. My sincere thanks to all that have worked for me and to all of the customers that we have been blessed to know.”

Schuler opened 9 Bakery and Lounge in 2013 at 9 S. Front St., the former home of longtime popular restaurant Caffe Phoenix.

“It certainly is a loss,” Wolverton said. “By the same token, we tend to be able to back fill any space that has existing kitchen capabilities.”

And, he added, a closure in downtown Wilmington is often countered with a start-up in another space. In this case, it’s Beer Barrio, which opened up in the old Dirty Harry space on the corner of Princess and Front streets last week.

Hilary Snow is a reporter at Port City Daily. Reach her at (910) 772-6341 or hilary.s@hometownwilmington.com.