Another restaurant space is turning over in Wicker Park, as Mondo Meatball, the international meatball-themed restaurant on Milwaukee Avenue, proved to be short-lived. The restaurant officially shuttered on August 11, announced with a sad sign on the door and the same note on its website. It lasted nearly five months to the day on the Wicker Park strip after opening on March 12.
Mondo Meatball was the first restaurant and passion project for advertising executive Dean Casagrande, who had been planning the concept for four years. He took over the space at 1467 N. Milwaukee from the Anteprima spinoff Azzurra, which closed New Year's Eve after just over a year there due to lack of business, with owner Marty Fosse saying at the time that Wicker Park, with its high rents and fickle clientele, "just wasn't the right neighborhood."
Mondo Meatball also suffered from lack of business and was frequently slow. "The reviews we did get were very good and the food was great—but the concept did not get hot for whatever reason," Casagrande writes in an email. "The numbers were just not viable." He adds that he may "revisit the Mondo Meatball concept in another format" at some point in the future.
The space will turn over again after Mondo Meatball called it quits yesterday. There's no word what's heading there next, so stay tuned.