WICKER PARK — Pub Royale in Wicker Park is closing June 25.
The bar, 2049 W. Division St., has served British-Indian fare and specialty cocktails, with an emphasis on gin and tonics and other pub staples, since 2015.
Its menu includes butter paneer, chana masala and lamb dumplings, along with more traditional bar fare, including burgers and chicken wings.
Owner Heisler Hospitality — which operates Revel Room, Queen Mary Tavern, Sportsman’s Club and other bars and restaurants around Chicago — announced the closure this week.
“With the impending sale of the building at 2049 W. Division, ownership felt it marked a natural end to Pub Royale’s story. The neighborhood tavern has been a Wicker Park staple since opening its doors in 2015, earning national recognition from Bon Appetit as one of their ‘Best New Restaurant’ selections,” according to Heisler.
Heisler spokesperson Hannah Turnbaugh said the building’s sale felt like the right moment to wind down operations after the challenges of running the bar during the pandemic.
“It doesn’t feel like a failure to us. You know, we’ve been open for seven years and had a lot of success in that time. It just felt like a natural end to Pub [Royale’s] story,” she said.
When Heisler opened the bar in 2015, the company envisioned Pub Royale as a more beer-focused, “drink-forward” spot, Turnbaugh said.
But the food’s popularity soon made it a central focus.
“The food just happened to be so good, and that just took on a life of its own,” Turnbaugh said. “It kind of turned into something that we didn’t initially set out for it to be, which was more of a restaurant.”
Turnbaugh said Heisler is working to find new positions for some Pub Royale staff at its other businesses. That includes a second Pizza Lobo location, the Logan Square pizza restaurant Heisler opened in 2020. Turnbaugh said another location will open this summer in Andersonville.
Pub Royale is offering several food specials leading up to next week’s closure. You can learn more on the bar’s Instagram.
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