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Asian Bistro - Arlington Heights

Asian Bistro - Arlington Heights
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  • Asian Bistro - Arlington Heights

    Post #1 - August 9th, 2004, 8:42 pm
    Post #1 - August 9th, 2004, 8:42 pm Post #1 - August 9th, 2004, 8:42 pm
    Asian Bistro has been open for three months now. We got the chance to go last night for dinner. Not that I take the following as a gauge of how good an ethnic restaurant is, but I do note it, Asian Bistro was packed with Asians. Take it FWIW.

    Started out with Szechuan Spicy Pork Dumplings - LOTS of chili oil, nice bite, and great pork flavor. We were drooling after this appetizer, the best dumplings we've had in a long time.

    Judi's main course Salt and Pepper Squid. Just ok, the fried coating was too thick.
    A disappointment seeing as we just had terrific Salt & Pepper Squid in Seattle last weekend.

    I adore lamb and chose an Asian Bistro 'Signature' dish, the Lamb Twin Delight. A platter with two individual servings of Hunan Lamb and Mongolian Lamb. Hunan Lamb tasted exactly like a Mexican dish. I could not even begin to see the Asian aspect of the Hunan Lamb. Very weird and not good unfortunately. The Mongolian Lamb had a good smoky flavor to it, very enjoyable, but it did lack a certain I'm not sure, I guess I felt it should have packed a bigger flavor.

    We both ordered some take out duck for this evening. I ordered a Hunan duck (I sure hope it does not have the spice profile of the above Hunan Lamb dish) and Judi ordered a tea smoked duck. We'll report back on how these were.

    Asian Bistro
    65 West Golf Road
    Arlington Heights, IL
    847.439.5888
    Open 11am-9:30pm 7 days a week (until 10:30pm on Fri & Sat)
    Last edited by Sweet Willie on August 30th, 2017, 9:11 am, edited 1 time in total.
    I did absolutely nothing and it was everything I thought it could be.
  • Post #2 - August 20th, 2007, 8:28 pm
    Post #2 - August 20th, 2007, 8:28 pm Post #2 - August 20th, 2007, 8:28 pm
    Has anyone been to the Asian Bistro on Golf Road in Arlington Heights? It was written up in the Cheap Eats section of the Trib back in May (got 3 forks). If you have tried this place, what did you order & how was it????

    Asian Bistro
    65 West Golf Road (just west of Arlington Heights Road)
    Arlington Heights, IL 60005
    847 439-5888
  • Post #3 - August 21st, 2007, 8:30 am
    Post #3 - August 21st, 2007, 8:30 am Post #3 - August 21st, 2007, 8:30 am
    They have an extensive sichuanese menu that is pretty spot on. I actually prefer it to LSC for a few dishes mainly because they use more sichuanese peppercorns. Overall, they do "ma-la" better than LSC.

    IMO, all their "boiled meat" dishes (fish, beef, etc) are better than LSC. I also prefer their pressed tofu and peanut dish and spicy tendon to LSC (fyi.. the spicy tendon in the Katy's fridge case is also better than LSC). However, LSC has better "dry chili" dishes than this place.

    I would go there more often if I lived in the area. We usually combine it with a trip out to Valle Produce.
  • Post #4 - August 21st, 2007, 1:27 pm
    Post #4 - August 21st, 2007, 1:27 pm Post #4 - August 21st, 2007, 1:27 pm
    The company I used to work for in Arlington Heights catered a lunch from this place one time and it was pretty unanimous that it was some of the most mediocre-at-best (some of it was just downright bad) Asian food anyone had.

    Not that the people I worked with would necessarily know good Asian food it bit them, but this food just tasted *off*...not food poisoning off, before any moderators start moving toward the "DELETE" key, but just weird flavors and seasonings. Maybe it was more authentic, and I'm just ignorant of that (I freely admit I've never been adventurous enough to ask for the authentic menu at a Chinese restaurant) but it was not good. Come to think of it, I had a couple of Chinese co-workers, who lived in China most of their lives and visited there often, who also said they didn't like it very much either.

    Just an opinion. They were featured in that Tribune series a few months ago about how to eat ethnic foods; specifically their hot pot dish and I admit it looked good on the video. I just don't think I'd go back there.
  • Post #5 - August 21st, 2007, 2:07 pm
    Post #5 - August 21st, 2007, 2:07 pm Post #5 - August 21st, 2007, 2:07 pm
    Never had anything off the western menu. My SO reads chinese (unfortunately, I do not read). There is an expansive chinese menu.

    Last time I went was a few months back.
  • Post #6 - August 21st, 2007, 9:52 pm
    Post #6 - August 21st, 2007, 9:52 pm Post #6 - August 21st, 2007, 9:52 pm
    pammyt wrote:Has anyone been to the Asian Bistro on Golf Road in Arlington Heights? It was written up in the Cheap Eats section of the Trib back in May (got 3 forks). If you have tried this place, what did you order & how was it????


    yes, a search finds: http://lthforum.com/bb/viewtopic.php?t=1014


    We went back a few weeks ago. duck was far overcooked, not good.

    I'm going to have to try some of the items that Yo mentions

    --
    I did absolutely nothing and it was everything I thought it could be.
  • Post #7 - October 7th, 2007, 2:11 pm
    Post #7 - October 7th, 2007, 2:11 pm Post #7 - October 7th, 2007, 2:11 pm
    Last week a well-informed friend suggested that we have dinner at Asian Bistro and it was an absolutely terrific experience. While the menu offers a variety of "Asian Fusion," the menu also states "Our authentic Szechaun cuisine offers a unique dining experience . . ." This, as it turned out, was was completely true. We stuck to the Szechuan offerings and they were well-prepared, fiery, richly-flavored and delicious, across the board . . .

    Image
    Szechuan pickles
    A tasty starter that delivered a great combination of flavors and textures. While it had some heat, this was the dish I used to cool my palate throughout the meal.


    Image
    Spicy Munbean (sic) Noodles Salad
    I loved these noodles which were pretty darned spicy and also had a touch of garlic. There was also a terrific basil aroma (via fried basil leaves), which took the dish to an entirely different level.


    Image
    Cold 'shredded' chicken
    I'm not sure of this dish's exact name but it was terrific. Again, there was a great balance as the sweet and the heat married together extremely well. The tender pieces of chicken conveyed those flavors quite effectively.


    Image
    Szechuan Hot & Spicy Wonton
    These tender dumplings were terrific. I loved the heat and I loved the well-seasoned pork filling. Getting an item like this prepared to order, makes all the difference in the world. These were just about perfect in texture, flavor and temperature.

    Image
    Szechuan Beef Stew with Noodle
    This soup was delicious, intense and satisfying. For lack of a better description, it reminded me of a cross between Beef Hue soup and Pho. The broth was herbacious and mildly spicy, with a rich baseline. The oxtail was tender, flavorful and nearly devoid of sinew and visable fat.


    Image
    Szechuan String Beans
    These crispy/soft beans were outstanding and the little bits of crumbled, seared pork and fermented black beans provided very nice 'seasoning.'


    Image
    La Tsi Chicken, aka Dry Chili Chicken
    I loved this version, which I thought compared very favorably with LSC's version and Double Li's version. Here, there was more heat than in the other 2 versions and the little nuggets of chicken were a little drier and more dense than the other 2 renditions.


    Image
    Plum Pork Triple Spicy
    Tender pork in a plum sauce that was mostly hot and just a touch sweet. From the pic, this looks like a very conventional Chinese/American-style dish but the reality was far from that. 'Triple spicy' just about begins to describe it.


    This food was remarkably delicious, bold and spicy! There were times, well after I'd taken a bite of something, when deep breaths drew intense chili vapors into the back of my throat, causing my eyes to water. Several times I had to take a break to let my palate recover but since everything was so tasty, I was compelled to keep going. In the process, 2 beers went down effortlessly -- and I don't normally drink. The balance in these dishes was noteworthy, as their complex and subtle sweetness complemented their intense spiciness.

    Being my first time in -- and there were only 2 of us -- we tried to order a wide variety of dishes, but there was some minor overlap on the noodle side. That said, we left a huge amount of interesting items unordered/untried and I really look forward to returning and working my way through the menu. It's pretty clear that the Szechuan side is Asian Bistro's strong suit and to get this kind of intensely flavored and spiced food in the burbs was definitely a surprise for me -- but a most welcome one. For a few months, I've been mourning the fact that Lao Sze Chuan closed their Palatine outpost earlier this year but Asian Bistro scratches the itch quite well, even though it's a bit farther from home.

    Last night, after a very unsatsifying meal at Mitsuwa's food court, we drove by Asian Bistro on our way home. As full as I was, I felt a strong temptation to stop in and try a few dishes. I resisted but I know I'll be going back there in the very near future.

    =R=

    Asian Bistro
    65 West Golf Road (just west of Arlington Heights Road)
    Arlington Heights, IL 60005
    847 439-5888

    edited for typos
    Last edited by ronnie_suburban on October 7th, 2007, 3:54 pm, edited 2 times in total.
    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain

    Another beer before happy hour to put me in the mood for drinkin', uh huh huh, oh, forget thinkin' --Beaver Nelson

    I find it a matter of note that in New York or Terre Haute, school cookies always seem to be oatmeal --Mr. French
  • Post #8 - October 7th, 2007, 3:00 pm
    Post #8 - October 7th, 2007, 3:00 pm Post #8 - October 7th, 2007, 3:00 pm
    Ronnie-thanks for all the yummy looking pictures. I still have not gotten a chance to get over to this restaurant. After the previous write-up about the "off" tasting food that was ordered, I got kind of turned off. Just curious, you mentioned that some items you ordered were spicy-did you ask for the heat of is that just the way their food is prepared :?:
  • Post #9 - October 7th, 2007, 3:09 pm
    Post #9 - October 7th, 2007, 3:09 pm Post #9 - October 7th, 2007, 3:09 pm
    ronnie_suburban,

    Your pictures just kill me! This is food porn at its best. I can't even bring myself to read the text of the thread. Why would I have to with your pictures? I will be having dinner at Asian Bistro very, very soon. :D

    Sharon
  • Post #10 - October 7th, 2007, 3:44 pm
    Post #10 - October 7th, 2007, 3:44 pm Post #10 - October 7th, 2007, 3:44 pm
    pammyt wrote:Ronnie-thanks for all the yummy looking pictures. I still have not gotten a chance to get over to this restaurant. After the previous write-up about the "off" tasting food that was ordered, I got kind of turned off. Just curious, you mentioned that some items you ordered were spicy-did you ask for the heat of is that just the way their food is prepared :?:

    We did not ask for heat but when asked, we said we wanted it spicy. And perhaps, because 2 of us ordered so many dishes and my companion spoke a little Chinese, that may have helped the situation along. In any case, we didn't get any of that resistance that can sometimes come up when westerners try to order the more 'authentic' tastes.

    As for the more negative comments above, I happen to know Sweet Willie and he's a very experienced eater. Of course, taste is largely subjective but I get the feeling that some of the items he ordered may not have been in the restaurant's wheelhouse, even though one of them was labelled as 'signature.'

    In any case, our entire meal, with beverages and tip, was about $80 and what we ordered could have easily fed 4 -- and maybe 6 -- people. On that basis, it's a relatively small investment to head over and give it a shot. FWIW, they also offer an extensive selection of lunch specials which are all priced under $6 and dinner specials that are all priced between $6.95 and $7.95. All of them include entree, steamed rice, spring roll and cookie.

    =R=
    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain

    Another beer before happy hour to put me in the mood for drinkin', uh huh huh, oh, forget thinkin' --Beaver Nelson

    I find it a matter of note that in New York or Terre Haute, school cookies always seem to be oatmeal --Mr. French
  • Post #11 - October 7th, 2007, 5:46 pm
    Post #11 - October 7th, 2007, 5:46 pm Post #11 - October 7th, 2007, 5:46 pm
    I'm glad someone with the appropriate street cred and a digital camera visited! I feel somewhat vindicated. :)
  • Post #12 - October 8th, 2007, 8:06 am
    Post #12 - October 8th, 2007, 8:06 am Post #12 - October 8th, 2007, 8:06 am
    I took my mom here for dinner last night. She's never much help in the ordering department--she's pretty conservative in what she'll eat--so I may as well have been eating alone for the range of things I was able to try. I started with the cold tripe and oxtail salad with red chili peanut vinaigrette. I was worried that it would be too peanut-y, but it wasn't at all. The flavor of the meat was predominant, which I liked. The heat was just right for me, too. I think I would have enjoyed this dish even more had it been served as a hot entree, which makes me think I'd like the szechuan beef stew with noodle that ronnie_suburban mentions above.

    For my entree, I got the shredded pork with dry bean curd. I'm a big fan of the the juxtaposition of meat and bean curd. I've always found the textures to be very complimentary. In this case, the pork and bean curd waere cooked in a very generic brown sauce. It was OK, probably wouldn't order it again.

    Neither dish I had last night really sang to me, but I see the potential in Asian Bistro. They have big round tables with lazy susans, perfect for a group to work it's way through the menu.
  • Post #13 - October 8th, 2007, 9:35 am
    Post #13 - October 8th, 2007, 9:35 am Post #13 - October 8th, 2007, 9:35 am
    Yeah Ron great photos. Thank you for making the meal visually memorable. You are really working that 20D and the raw software. It is nice to know that there are great (somewhat focused) asian restaurants in the suburbs. I do hope that more people come here and try their Sichuan foods, rather than their other offerings. They really know how to do it right.

    They also have a website (although there is not much there, just one page).

    ronnie_suburban wrote:Image
    Spicy Munbean (sic) Noodles Salad
    I loved these noodles which were pretty darned spicy and also had a touch of garlic. There was also a terrific basil aroma (via fried basil leaves), which took the dish to an entirely different level.

    Image
    Szechuan Hot & Spicy Wonton
    These tender dumplings were terrific. I loved the heat and I loved the well-seasoned pork filling. Getting an item like this prepared to order, makes all the difference in the world. These were just about perfect in texture, flavor and temperature.

    These items were quite tasty, although they seemed a little sweet, I still loved them. It was quite a surprise since it is a rare, for me, to have anything sweet in Sichuan cuisine.

    ronnie_suburban wrote:... And perhaps, because 2 of us ordered so many dishes and my companion spoke a little Chinese, that may have helped the situation along.

    I only know a handful of Chinese (read: enough to get into trouble). :D
  • Post #14 - October 8th, 2007, 9:43 am
    Post #14 - October 8th, 2007, 9:43 am Post #14 - October 8th, 2007, 9:43 am
    ronnie_suburban wrote:...Last night, after a very unsatsifying meal at Mitsuwa's food court...
    Hey Ron next time you are in the Misuwa food court, you should try out one of the vendors that serve Okonomiyaki. It is quite a savory treat.
  • Post #15 - October 8th, 2007, 9:46 am
    Post #15 - October 8th, 2007, 9:46 am Post #15 - October 8th, 2007, 9:46 am
    Has anyone tried the Mapo Tofu at this place?
  • Post #16 - October 8th, 2007, 9:53 am
    Post #16 - October 8th, 2007, 9:53 am Post #16 - October 8th, 2007, 9:53 am
    kanin wrote:Has anyone tried the Mapo Tofu at this place?
    IIRC, the Mapo doufu was quite tasty. I remember there being large slices of green onions.
  • Post #17 - October 8th, 2007, 9:55 am
    Post #17 - October 8th, 2007, 9:55 am Post #17 - October 8th, 2007, 9:55 am
    yt, those noodles definitely had a pronounced sweet note but it seemed to fade pretty fast in the midst of all the heat and other flavors in the dish. I didn't really pick up the sweet note in the wonton while we were eating, but now thinking about it, they were definitely sweeter than LSC's rendition.

    As for what is more typical of Sichuan kitchen, I'm really not experienced enough to comment. But yes, compared to Double Li and LSC, there was more sweetness to a couple of these dishes. Still, it was integrated well with the other flavors and didn't dominate. There was none of that cloying, one-note sweetness that so often accompanies "Chinese" food that is more Americanized. And frankly, I was surprised and delighted by the heat level of some of these dishes. It was definitely up there on the scale. In fact for me, it was, at times, challenging. :wink:

    =R=
    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain

    Another beer before happy hour to put me in the mood for drinkin', uh huh huh, oh, forget thinkin' --Beaver Nelson

    I find it a matter of note that in New York or Terre Haute, school cookies always seem to be oatmeal --Mr. French
  • Post #18 - October 8th, 2007, 9:59 am
    Post #18 - October 8th, 2007, 9:59 am Post #18 - October 8th, 2007, 9:59 am
    ronnie_suburban wrote:And frankly, I was surprised and delighted by the heat level of some of these dishes. It was definitely up there on the scale. In fact for me, it was, at times, challenging. :wink:
    Well I just think you need more practice. :)
  • Post #19 - April 28th, 2008, 10:54 pm
    Post #19 - April 28th, 2008, 10:54 pm Post #19 - April 28th, 2008, 10:54 pm
    Help me out here, I'm confused. I just don't understand why this place doesn't get more attention. The Szechuan dishes here are outstanding, easily rivaling and sometimes surpassing LSC or double Li. Spicy dumplings, beef tendon, double cooked fish fillet,Ki Shue chicken,mini juicy pork buns, boiled dishes, and Ma po tofu are among the best versions to be had in these parts. Even for those who live in the city, this is definitely worth the drive.
    Lacking fins or tail
    The Gefilte fish
    swims with great difficulty.

    Jewish haiku.
  • Post #20 - May 3rd, 2008, 9:18 pm
    Post #20 - May 3rd, 2008, 9:18 pm Post #20 - May 3rd, 2008, 9:18 pm
    Sign me up as another fan. I took two guests from Germany there tonight (I was hoping to get into Chinatown with them, but we ended up heading for Gurnee earlier in the day and more insane highway driving just didn't appeal).

    Very impressed with the Sichuan and non-Sichuan items, listed in their order of arrival:

    Thai Meat Egg Rolls: An unusual item: pork-filled fried rolls, with a hoi-sin-like dipping sauce. Crisp and light wrap, nicely spiced filling.

    Ma-Po Tofu: With a hearty but not threatening level of spice, this dish had more ma-la than anything I've ever had. The mouth-numbing I initially mistook for the cooling effect of a large quantity of ginger. The leeks were sweet, the tofu firm, and the flavor awesome.

    Sweet and Sour Chicken (ordered by our spice-averse student guest): This was the lone disappointment. Too sweet, too little sour, but the veggies crisp, the breaded chicken just right. I wouldn't order it again, but I wouldn't have ordered it in the first place.

    Beef Fried Rice: Thing2 loves fried rice, and wanted leftovers for breakfast, so we ordered an extra entree. This was probably some of the best fried rice I've ever had. Big slices of tender beef, nicely seasoned, great texture to the rice.

    La Tsi Chicken (three chile symbols): This isn't LSC's Chicken Crack, but it's close. It isn't as crisp and light, but the chicken is fried with a great set of seasonings, almost KFC-like at times. Not as oily, but just as hot, definitely a dish I'll go back to.

    Shanghai Noodles with Chicken: Nice turmeric-yellow color, slight curry flavor, well balanced flavors and textures. The noodles were perfectly al dente.

    Prices are resonable, and portions are generous: we brought home decent-sized leftovers of the fried rice, ma-po and la tsi (the sweet and sour leftovers weren't worth taking home). Service has its plusses and minuses: We were given a lot of attention, waters refilled, but were never offered tea (I didn't even think about it until the fortune cookies arrived and I had nothing to dunk them in), and the entrees came out widely spaced.

    I'll definitely go back. This was much better than the places I've been to in the immediate area. Mmmm.
    What is patriotism, but the love of good things we ate in our childhood?
    -- Lin Yutang
  • Post #21 - January 27th, 2009, 4:58 pm
    Post #21 - January 27th, 2009, 4:58 pm Post #21 - January 27th, 2009, 4:58 pm
    After reading through a few threads here trying to find a new spot to order lunch from on one of my Arlington Heights workdays I decided to try Asian Bistro. I was pleasantly surprised when upon my arrival there was an order of the hot & spicy wonton wrapped up with everything else I was picking up and the owner insisted that I try them if I liked spicy food.

    Good call, as that proved to be my favorite part of lunch today. Substantial heat that almost immediately provoked that tickling sensation that is the beginning of a scalp sweat, and a great taste to match. Devoured in record time, unfortunately staining my jeans with an errant drip in the process. At the time, I didn't much care though - I just wanted to keep eating.

    Szechuan green beans were good, and something I would order again, though I find that I prefer the same dish at Moon Palace in Chinatown slightly. Even so, they live up to prior descriptions here.

    La tsi chicken was a slight disappointment however after noting comparisons to the chicken crack at LSC. When consumed with the accompanying chiles there was a nice heat to this dish as well, which was good. The chicken doesn't seem capable of standing up on its own though, and every piece eaten without a chile was rather bland. I found myself wishing for the sweetness of Tony's chicken at those times, or really anything else that might give it a more substantial flavor.

    I'd likely give the last dish another chance at some point just in case this was an off day, given the previous love for it, but I more eagerly await passing the Chinese menu on to friends for translation and sampling something new in the future. Along with the hot and spicy wonton that is. That will not be passed up.
  • Post #22 - January 27th, 2009, 10:55 pm
    Post #22 - January 27th, 2009, 10:55 pm Post #22 - January 27th, 2009, 10:55 pm
    The La Tsi chicken at Asian Bistro compares directly to the dry chili chicken at LS. It's a fairly standard Sichuan dish and nothing at all like "Tony's three chili chicken" which I think is what some refer to as "chicken crack". You aren't supposed to eat the Chiles.
    Lacking fins or tail
    The Gefilte fish
    swims with great difficulty.

    Jewish haiku.
  • Post #23 - January 27th, 2009, 11:03 pm
    Post #23 - January 27th, 2009, 11:03 pm Post #23 - January 27th, 2009, 11:03 pm
    very fortuitous timing on the revival of this thread. i'm supposed to go out with a friend on thursday, and he suggested chinese food near where he lives, which is arlington heights. we'll check this place out and i'll report back.
    http://edzos.com/
    Edzo's Evanston on Facebook or Twitter.

    Edzo's Lincoln Park on Facebook or Twitter.
  • Post #24 - January 28th, 2009, 10:08 am
    Post #24 - January 28th, 2009, 10:08 am Post #24 - January 28th, 2009, 10:08 am
    We were back again last night, and they seemed to be having an off night:
    La Tsi Chicken was less "Chicken Crack-y" than I remember, and was very, very dry (a little oil in the bowl would have been nice).
    The Szechuan wonton were delivered 15 minutes after our entrees
    It took forever to get the check, and then it was off by almost $3, which took another ten minutes to get fixed (some language issues with the service staff, I think)

    On the upside:
    Mu Shu Beef was very tasty (and greener than most varieties. Perhaps just a greener cabbage being used)
    House special pan-fried noodles have a great sauce, nearly up there with what I've had at Sun Wah

    One note: MrsF ordered the Kung Pao Chicken thinking it was something she'd ordered previously and loved, and it was rather laden with celery (otherwise just fine, but nothing worth ordering again). That bothers some more than others, so just be warned.
    What is patriotism, but the love of good things we ate in our childhood?
    -- Lin Yutang
  • Post #25 - January 28th, 2009, 2:21 pm
    Post #25 - January 28th, 2009, 2:21 pm Post #25 - January 28th, 2009, 2:21 pm
    kuhdo wrote:The La Tsi chicken at Asian Bistro compares directly to the dry chili chicken at LS. It's a fairly standard Sichuan dish and nothing at all like "Tony's three chili chicken" which I think is what some refer to as "chicken crack". You aren't supposed to eat the Chiles.


    I made the comparison because others in this thread had done the same, which affected my expectations to some extent. I am well aware that dry chili chicken is a standard Szechuan item.

    I began eating the chicken without consuming the chiles. If one didn't eat the chiles with the La Tsi chicken that was prepared for me however, one would have a difficult time enjoying said chicken. In fact, I would say it would be impossible to enjoy said chicken without eating the chiles. Though it sounds like they were in fact a bit off yesterday based on JoelF's experience as well. I would say more than a bit off based on the chicken, quite frankly, but the beans were very good and the wontons were excellent.

    As I said, I'll return to Asian Bistro, and I'll even give the La Tsi chicken another chance, but regardless of opinions on what I should or should not compare it to, and how I should or should not eat it, yesterday it was not good. At all. It was merely there, and edible.
  • Post #26 - February 5th, 2009, 10:06 pm
    Post #26 - February 5th, 2009, 10:06 pm Post #26 - February 5th, 2009, 10:06 pm
    a buddy and i went to asian bistro the other night. he's a non-foodie and i have to kind of drag him to interesting places. if it was up to him, we'd be eating at chain steakhouses and the like.

    anyway, i was surprisingly able to talk him into going to asian bistro, mostly because it's near his house. we were the only non-asians in there on a tuesday night and were greeted warmly and seated immediately.

    my friend asked for iced tea, which seemed to befuddle our waiter, who had limited english. we repeated it a few times and he nodded and went away. after a long absence (10+ minutes) we wondered if they were cooling down hot tea to give us, and he reappeared with two women, served us both large glasses of iced tea (which was pretty good), even though i didn't order any, and was prepared to take our order.

    we ordered and chatted with the older woman, who introduced herself as Jenny, and was a pleasure to talk to. i asked her for recommendations and she asked if we liked spicy food. i said yes, my friend indicated he was so-so.

    we ordered the szechuan won tons, on her recommendation, and loved them. they were very spicy, but also had some sweetness.

    also tried the mungbean noodle salad, based largely on the picture above, but we got something that looked completely different. the noodles we got were large translucent square noodles in a very spicy sauce that was similar to the wonton sauce but with a lot of what seemed like crushed dried chile and fermented black beans. i didn't care for this one.

    we tried the shu mai also, and they were average. very doughy and the meaty filling was pretty bland.

    also had the thai meat egg roll, which was good, filled with lots of very flavorful pork.

    we had the la tso chicken mentioned above and loved it. it was very spicy, bathed in tons of bright red chile-scented oil, and had nice big thin slices of garlic and ginger that were stir-fried with the chicken. the chicken was great--crispy, chewy, and tender. i liked this dish so much, i ordered another one to take home and eat the next day.

    my friend wanted a couple non-spicy options, so we had mongolian beef, which, although not my favorite, was a very good version of the dish, with nice high-quality beef, very tender, and a great sauce which wasn't overly heavy or pasty.

    we also had the house special fried rice, which was one of the better fried rice dishes i've ever had. tons of large pieces of meat (it had chicken and beef in it) and larger shrimp than i'm used to seeing in fried rice. really good.

    one thing that i found strange was that they didn't give us any white rice with our food. not sure if that was because two of us ordered so much food or what. probably for the best, since we had way too much and didn't need to fill up on the rice anyway.

    the service was very good. jenny, the owner (i presume) was very attentive and came over multiple times to check on us and chat. there was another woman who very quickly took away dirty plates and really took it upon herself to make sure we didn't eat the dried chiles and the first guy mainly focused on keeping our iced tea glasses full.

    i thought it was pretty pricey, although the quality was certainly there. it was about $72 before tax and tip for 2 (although, as i said, we ordered pretty ambitiously).

    i'd definitely go there again and i'm happy to have found out about this place on this board.
    http://edzos.com/
    Edzo's Evanston on Facebook or Twitter.

    Edzo's Lincoln Park on Facebook or Twitter.
  • Post #27 - April 21st, 2009, 3:35 pm
    Post #27 - April 21st, 2009, 3:35 pm Post #27 - April 21st, 2009, 3:35 pm
    Opted for another shot at pick-up from Asian Bistro for lunch today, and glad that I did. Hot and spicy wontons were as good as I remembered, with a nice amount of heat and just a little bit of sweetness.

    The La Tsi chicken was quite good this time - I see now why others here enjoy it so much. It was obviously prepared differently than my first try - you could see it immediately; the chiles were crushed and spread evenly throughout the dish, whereas last time they had remained entirely intact. This time around every bite contained some much needed heat - even bordering on too much on occasion - and there was also a bit more noticeable saltiness to the chicken that I appreciated after last time's bland disappointment.

    Plum pork, triple spicy, was a prized new dish for me that I had to sample this time around after reviewing Ronnie's pictures. Very tasty. A bit less spicy than today's La Tsi chicken, but that was appreciated by that point, and it still packed a goodly amount of heat.
  • Post #28 - April 23rd, 2009, 1:15 pm
    Post #28 - April 23rd, 2009, 1:15 pm Post #28 - April 23rd, 2009, 1:15 pm
    Left work in a hurry on Tuesday and forgot to bring the remainder of the La Tsi chicken home with me. A quick prelude to today's lunch revealed it to be packing a significant dose of extra heat 2 days after the initial preparation. I was not expecting that, wow.
  • Post #29 - April 23rd, 2009, 10:49 pm
    Post #29 - April 23rd, 2009, 10:49 pm Post #29 - April 23rd, 2009, 10:49 pm
    ucjames....
    Try the beef tendon next time. AB's version truly shines. It's like Szechuan pastami on crack. I'd be surprised if you didn't like it. "husband and Wife" (aka beef and maw @ LSC) is also outstanding.
    Lacking fins or tail
    The Gefilte fish
    swims with great difficulty.

    Jewish haiku.
  • Post #30 - August 4th, 2009, 2:20 pm
    Post #30 - August 4th, 2009, 2:20 pm Post #30 - August 4th, 2009, 2:20 pm
    Hey Ronnie Suburban:

    Just got back from Asian Bistro, and had a delightful chat with "Janie" (I believe that was her name). Anyway, she saw that I was ordering some appetizers that "we Chinese like", and pointed me toward the special, untranslated menu....reading though each and every appetizer on the list! SHe was so enthused for me to try everything....

    She says you are working your way through this menu as well, and was wondering if perhaps you may have attempted to translate it....she says she would like to, but her English is not good enough..

    Anyway, what a delightful lady...I asked her if she was the owner and she replied "No, I just work here...the CUSTOMERS are the ownerss." Love it!

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