Chicago-based vegan pizza shop The Chicago House of ‘Za will close its doors permanently on June 20. Husband-and-wife team Danny and Jammie Gulino opened the House of ‘Za, Chicago’s first vegan pizzeria, in 2017 as a small takeout venue in the Lakeview neighborhood. In 2019, the pizzeria expanded into a large 3,000-square-foot dine-in operation in the North Center area specializing in Chicago-style deep dish pizzas (topped with seitan and cashew-based cheese), calzones, and pasta. During the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the Gulinos transitioned back to a takeout operation but running a business of that size in Chicago with limited capacity proved too costly.
“We would love to have the opportunity to make pizza on a smaller scale in the future. But, [we] are unsure of how that will look, and if, when and where that would happen,” the couple posted to Instagram. “It is incredibly hard to put the words out there that we truly feel. It’s been our dream since we were small to be restaurant owners. The thought of not being in a kitchen is terrifying.”
Until June 20, House of ‘Za is offering takeout options such as full pizzas and slices, along with beer and wine. “The next few weeks will be both tearful, and terrifying,” the couple said. “Please drop in and grab some pizza and let us formally say goodbye for now.”
House of ‘Za is located at 1939 W Byron St., Chicago, IL.
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