WICKER PARK — An award-winning Nepalese-Indian restaurant has relocated to the heart of Wicker Park after several years in West Town.
Vajra moved to 2039 W. North Ave. in late May, Dipesh Kakshapaty, a consultant for the restaurant, said Monday.
Vajra, previously at 1329 W. Chicago Ave., reopened in September after closing for three months earlier last summer. The restaurant owners decided to finish its lease at the Chicago Avenue location, which concluded at the end of May, Kakshapaty said.
Vajra made a splash on Chicago’s culinary scene after it opened in 2019. The restaurant was named to Michelin’s Bib Gourmand list in 2021 and 2022, which praised chef Min Thapa’s cooking as “replete with wonderfully rich flavors and unique methods.”
Thapa’s menu includes Indian classics such as tikka masala and curries, biryanis and Nepalese momo dumplings.
Vajra has only offered takeout and delivery since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, a model which has proven successful, said Kakshapaty, who previously worked at Cumin in Wicker Park.
The restaurant could add dine-in service later this year after they get settled in the new location, he said.
“We just want to make sure that everything is good, you know all the ducks are a row, so when we open … we can stay open,” said Kakshapaty, who didn’t have an exact timeline to share.
Vajra’s new location was once the site of the North Avenue Baths, a communal bathing facility constructed in 1922. Developers restored the terra cotta-clad building in the ’90s.
It’s since been home to a series of restaurants, most recently the Angry Pig Tavern, which closed in 2019.
In 2021, soul food restaurant Oooh Wee It Is announced it was moving into the space as part of a citywide expansion. But that move never materialized, and the storefront sat vacant until Vajra took over this spring.
Vajra is open for takeout and delivery 5-9 p.m. daily. Orders can be taken over the phone, the restaurant’s website and various delivery apps.
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