Taj Aiken has returned in a new location near its previous site in downtown Aiken.

The restaurant, which specializes in the cuisine of India, reopened May 3 at 213 Richland Ave. W.

From March 2017 until February 2018, Taj Aiken was based at the Hotel Aiken, which is on the corner of Richland Avenue West and Laurens Street.

The restaurant closed because of the major renovation planned for the hotel, according to a 2018 post on Taj Aiken’s Facebook page.

Alok Kumar Akse owns Taj Aiken with a couple of silent partners.

At the new location, they are offering an expanded menu, which includes gluten-free and vegetarian dishes.

“We have many options,” Akse said. “If the customer wants us to, we can make their food mild, medium or spicy.”

Special requests by diners who have allergies also can be accommodated.

“We don’t use frozen food,” Akse said. “We have fresh food. And we don’t use spices with artificial ingredients.”

Dishes on Taj Aiken’s menu include chicken tikka masala, chicken vindaloo, eggplant bhurtha, mixed vegetable curry, goat biryani and lamb biryani.

The restaurant also has a variety of breads and appetizers from which to choose, along with soups, salads and desserts.

Taj Aiken is open every day except for Tuesday from 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. for lunch and from 5 to 9:30 p.m. for dinner.

A buffet, which costs $9.99 per person, is available at lunch, but customers also can order from the regular menu as well.

Taj Aiken serves beer and wine.

For more information, call 803-845-9245.

​Dede Biles is the Aiken County government, business and horse industry reporter for the Aiken Standard. Follow her on Twitter @DBethBiles.