Chicago Love Stories: Bang Bang Pie
Exploring the love behind our favorite Chicago small businesses.
In honor of Valentine’s week, we interviewed 5 couples behind our favorite Chicago small businesses. Although you’ll find these shops very different from one another, we learned love truly is a driving force behind their success. Follow along as we feature a different couple everyday leading up to Valentine’s Day.
To kick things off with a bang 😉 , first up is Michael and Susan of Logan Square’s Bang Bang Pie. Here’s 5 things you didn’t know about the owners of your favorite pie shop.
- They met while on vacation… with their moms.
“We met over 18 years ago in Destin, Florida. My mother had taken me & three of my best friends there for vacation & Susan’s mother had done the same. We met & became fast friends, but it was a couple years later before we started dating.”
- Their kids love donuts more than pie.
“Though my kids are self-proclaimed donut lovers, they do eat a fair share of pie & show no signs of slowing down!” Michael claims he still loves pie as much as when they first opened.
- Michael opened Bang Bang after managing the famous Gramercy Tavern.
“My background has always been in the hospitality industry but on more of a fine dining level. I was a manger at TRU downtown, manager in New York at Gramercy Tavern & then a Hotel & Restaurant critic for Forbes Travel Guide. While fine dining was nice, I really wanted to connect with guests more & open a daily spot for people to hang out & bring their family and friends.”
- They run the shop by day and their three toddlers run the home at night.
“It is definitely not easy running a business & maintaining a balance (especially with three kids 5,3, & 1 at home) but we have an amazing team at the shop that helps support us & we most definitely could not do it without them — as well as Susan who bears the brunt of watching the kids on the weekend & when we have special events, etc. Susan was a big support & sounding board as we developed the business plan & is always there to listen to ideas/offer insight!”
- They’ll spend Valentine’s Day making pot pies and sipping wine.
“Valentine’s Day is a pretty busy weekend at the shop so much of the weekend will be spent working, but we will most definitely get some down time & will likely spend it cooking at home & drinking wine!”
Michael’s Valentine to Susan: “Susan, I am so fortunate to have you as my side kick and partner for this crazy ride. I love you! Michael”
Send a bouquet like Susan’s to your Valentine.
Stay tuned for our other featured couples.