LTH Home

Rainbow Cuisine Thai - A new contender

Rainbow Cuisine Thai - A new contender
  • Forum HomePost Reply BackTop
    Page 3 of 9
  • Post #61 - May 28th, 2013, 2:17 pm
    Post #61 - May 28th, 2013, 2:17 pm Post #61 - May 28th, 2013, 2:17 pm
    Sweetbread wrote:
    wordlvr wrote:Rainbow Cuisine has again been discovered: http://www.tastingtable.com/entry_detail/chicago/13712


    Same thing happened with Nha Hang after it was discovered/popularized by LTHers. The Tasting Table reviewers are definitely lurking here, if not full-blown contributing members. Reveal yourself Batman! :lol:

    Rainbow Cuisine earns its stripes
    A tiny, year-old, Thai takeout joint in Lincoln Square suddenly blows up.

    By Mike Sula @MikeSula

    This is dated May 20th ...
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #62 - May 28th, 2013, 3:19 pm
    Post #62 - May 28th, 2013, 3:19 pm Post #62 - May 28th, 2013, 3:19 pm

    I always appreciate that Sula gives attribution when he writes about something he learns here (or anywhere, for that matter).

    =R=
    Gardening is a bloodsport --Meghan Kleeman

    Why don't you take these profiteroles and put them up your shi'-ta-holes? --Jemaine & Bret

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #63 - May 28th, 2013, 4:33 pm
    Post #63 - May 28th, 2013, 4:33 pm Post #63 - May 28th, 2013, 4:33 pm
    I forgot to report on my takeout from Saturday. My sister, geli, had a copy of the translated menu at home and although I of course left it there, I remembered accurately what to order. We had the sausage, fried chicken, chicken laap, rice salad with ham, and boat noodle soup. Everyone else has already described them much better than I could, but I found all outstanding. Although I've eaten hotter things I was satisfied with the level of heat. I'm already looking forward to my next Chicago visit to eat the same dishes and try the others.
  • Post #64 - June 4th, 2013, 10:33 pm
    Post #64 - June 4th, 2013, 10:33 pm Post #64 - June 4th, 2013, 10:33 pm
    Wow...just, wow. Inaugural trip to Rainbow and it was fantastic. I've always preferred TAC over Spoon, but Rainbow may win out over both of them. Everything was great but the Nam Khao Tod is the dish I'll be craving 'til I return.
  • Post #65 - June 11th, 2013, 1:42 pm
    Post #65 - June 11th, 2013, 1:42 pm Post #65 - June 11th, 2013, 1:42 pm
    How lucky was I and my Elizabeth staff when I walked over to Rainbow Thai for our staff lunch and Gary W. and his comrades were there!?! Amazing, best meal yet based on their recommendations. We got the jerky, meat balls, lemongrass and shrimp salad, crispy rice and egg, fried chicken, catfish custard, crispy pork and broccoli.
  • Post #66 - June 11th, 2013, 2:56 pm
    Post #66 - June 11th, 2013, 2:56 pm Post #66 - June 11th, 2013, 2:56 pm
    ilianaregan wrote:How lucky was I and my Elizabeth staff when I walked over to Rainbow Thai for our staff lunch and Gary W. and his comrades were there!?! Amazing, best meal yet based on their recommendations. We got the jerky, meat balls, lemongrass and shrimp salad, crispy rice and egg, fried chicken, catfish custard, crispy pork and broccoli.


    I have to say that the last few times I have ordered the jerky it has come quite fatty in some pieces and extremely tough to the point of being inedible in others. The first time I ordered their neau dad deaw it blew me away though, so I think I'll have to attempt it yet again...

    Also, I was told last night that they were out of I-San sausage - not sure what their situation is currently.
  • Post #67 - June 11th, 2013, 3:41 pm
    Post #67 - June 11th, 2013, 3:41 pm Post #67 - June 11th, 2013, 3:41 pm
    ilianaregan wrote:How lucky was I and my Elizabeth staff when I walked over to Rainbow Thai for our staff lunch and Gary W. and his comrades were there!?! Amazing, best meal yet based on their recommendations. We got the jerky, meat balls, lemongrass and shrimp salad, crispy rice and egg, fried chicken, catfish custard, crispy pork and broccoli.


    incite wrote:I have to say that the last few times I have ordered the jerky it has come quite fatty in some pieces and extremely tough to the point of being inedible in others. The first time I ordered their neau dad deaw it blew me away though, so I think I'll have to attempt it yet again...

    Also, I was told last night that they were out of I-San sausage - not sure what their situation is currently.


    Iliana, great to hear we could assist!

    I was the one who recommended the jerky, so I hope it wasn't to the point of inedible. It has been like crack to me lately and I keep going back just so I can order it! Sometimes i get an occasional fatty chewy piece, but I don't mind a good challenge now and then. Usually the majority of pieces are tender and juicy with a nice funk to them.
    Part of the secret of a success in life is to eat what you like and let the food fight it out inside.

    -Mark Twain
  • Post #68 - June 11th, 2013, 4:43 pm
    Post #68 - June 11th, 2013, 4:43 pm Post #68 - June 11th, 2013, 4:43 pm
    tasting table has 1 editor per city (outside of NYC); that Tasting Table article was written by H. Sperling.
  • Post #69 - June 13th, 2013, 2:32 pm
    Post #69 - June 13th, 2013, 2:32 pm Post #69 - June 13th, 2013, 2:32 pm
    Cathy2 wrote:Hi,

    At Spoon Thai, there has been effectively two kitchens: one group preparing food for Americans (which would include Pad Thai) and the other preparing food for Thais, which crossed over to Americans who knew of the Thai-language menu. Early on they were not particularly thrilled with American's ordering food from the Thai menu. Not so much a gringo factor, rather one of labor because it was more work to prepare the Thai offerings

    Regards,


    The last time I went to Spoon Thai, I was told that there was NO other menu, and that the items on the current English-language menu are the only items that are served... I felt rather insulted, and when I asked about kûng châe náam plaa (which I ate there a few years ago), they suggested a seafood salad from the standard menu. They certainly aren't working very hard lately to curry favor with American foodies.
  • Post #70 - June 13th, 2013, 2:59 pm
    Post #70 - June 13th, 2013, 2:59 pm Post #70 - June 13th, 2013, 2:59 pm
    Cyriaco wrote:The last time I went to Spoon Thai, I was told that there was NO other menu, and that the items on the current English-language menu are the only items that are served... I felt rather insulted, and when I asked about kûng châe náam plaa (which I ate there a few years ago), they suggested a seafood salad from the standard menu. They certainly aren't working very hard lately to curry favor with American foodies.


    Probably due to the popularity of Spoon's "authentic" thai items, they have consolidated to one menu. And the kung chae naam plaa is on it. You can find it here: http://www.spoonthai.com/menu.html

    What you encountered was most likely a result of a communication issue between you and the server.

    That being said, I much prefer Rainbow's version of that dish!!
    "Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit; wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad." Miles Kington
  • Post #71 - June 18th, 2013, 8:23 am
    Post #71 - June 18th, 2013, 8:23 am Post #71 - June 18th, 2013, 8:23 am
    Fyi Rainbow thai will be closed 6/17-6/18. I sadly learned this the hard way when I drove out there to get my thai fix... They will be open 6/19. There was a handwritten sign on their door.
  • Post #72 - June 18th, 2013, 9:38 am
    Post #72 - June 18th, 2013, 9:38 am Post #72 - June 18th, 2013, 9:38 am
    Thanks Matt and Mark for giving myself and a few others the grand tour of everything delicious at Rainbow last week. I was blown away by the raw shrimp salad which was incredibly spicy but not in a way that made me want to stop eating. There wasn't one dish that I tried that I wouldn't order again. As for the above poster that mentioned the closing, I hope it's to begin construction on their expansion... :D
  • Post #73 - June 18th, 2013, 9:54 am
    Post #73 - June 18th, 2013, 9:54 am Post #73 - June 18th, 2013, 9:54 am
    I think that the closing on these dates might be to allow them to prepare for their participation at the Thai festival (6-19-21)at Adams and Dearborn where, if I understood correctly what the owner told me, they might cook dishes. (WLS Tv's Dolinski could have a segment on that subject). But it also could be as it was said up-thread to expand next door, a project that took shape a couple of weeks ago (again if I undestood correctly).
  • Post #74 - June 19th, 2013, 4:20 pm
    Post #74 - June 19th, 2013, 4:20 pm Post #74 - June 19th, 2013, 4:20 pm
    In fact I walked by the restaurant this afternoon and the hand written sign on the door mentioned that they would be open tomorrow
    (6-20). And Dolinski, as mentioned in my precedent posting had posted a piece on both the restaurant and the Thai festival on the site of WLS today.
  • Post #75 - June 19th, 2013, 9:11 pm
    Post #75 - June 19th, 2013, 9:11 pm Post #75 - June 19th, 2013, 9:11 pm
    Here's the link to the Dolinsky piece.

    It includes a pretty decent how-to for making the crispy rice in the Nam Khao Tod.

    Mote just seems so flabbergasted from all the attention. :)
    The meal isn't over when I'm full; the meal is over when I hate myself. - Louis C.K.
  • Post #76 - June 20th, 2013, 12:47 pm
    Post #76 - June 20th, 2013, 12:47 pm Post #76 - June 20th, 2013, 12:47 pm
    Hey guys! This is Heather from the Chicago edition of Tasting Table. I'm a constant LTH lurker, and regularly get valuable tips from all of you. (I tell anyone and everyone who asks that LTH is one of my favorite sources of leads.) So thank you, and keep up the voracious exploring!

    If anyone ever feels inspired to email me directly with favorites, old or new, I can be reached at heather@tastingtable.com (and will be most grateful).
  • Post #77 - June 23rd, 2013, 6:37 pm
    Post #77 - June 23rd, 2013, 6:37 pm Post #77 - June 23rd, 2013, 6:37 pm
    The last time I went to Spoon Thai, I was told that there was NO other menu, and that the items on the current English-language menu are the only items that are served... I felt rather insulted, and when I asked about kûng châe náam plaa (which I ate there a few years ago), they suggested a seafood salad from the standard menu. They certainly aren't working very hard lately to curry favor with American foodies.

    This evening will be the last time I go to Spoon Thai. When the crispy pad see ew hit the table, you could smell the rancid oil it was cooked in. (Yes, we sent it back and they prepared another batch that looked better, but was also inedible.)

    Shame, as we had a good meal there a month or so ago. We were the only customers eating in tonight--good luck to all the folks who came in for carryout.

    Rainbow it will be next time we're in the neighborhood. (Or Rosded, always been happy there.)
  • Post #78 - June 23rd, 2013, 8:36 pm
    Post #78 - June 23rd, 2013, 8:36 pm Post #78 - June 23rd, 2013, 8:36 pm
    hsm wrote:
    Rainbow it will be next time we're in the neighborhood. (Or Rosded, always been happy there.)


    I'd also put in a good word for Aroy: when Rainbow was still closed last Wednesday, I went back to my old standby and was rewarded with the most soulful, funkdafied Thai in the city--deep cuts here, people. Where Rainbow pops with bright flavors, what Aroy does is a quiet storm: the extra touch of rice powder on the pork neck salad, the acid from kaffir lime in the phat phet fish ball, the grainy bits of mineral-y goodness in the city's best larb. Love that place.
  • Post #79 - June 23rd, 2013, 10:05 pm
    Post #79 - June 23rd, 2013, 10:05 pm Post #79 - June 23rd, 2013, 10:05 pm
    Have to say I agree. While I love them both, I prefer Aroy.
    "In pursuit of joys untasted"
    from Giuseppe Verdi's La Traviata
  • Post #80 - June 23rd, 2013, 11:56 pm
    Post #80 - June 23rd, 2013, 11:56 pm Post #80 - June 23rd, 2013, 11:56 pm
    Aroys Chou Chi Pork kicks so much ass
  • Post #81 - June 24th, 2013, 7:16 am
    Post #81 - June 24th, 2013, 7:16 am Post #81 - June 24th, 2013, 7:16 am
    ... and that's why the area supports so many fine Thai restaurants: There's reasons to go to each.
    Unlike out here in the burbs, where I think panang curry is piped out to them all and dispensed from a spigot. Just seeing a slightly uncommon dish like a papaya salad or even a larb is a hint that maybe, maybe, this place can rise above the Ameri-Thai (Oops, no, page 3 is sushi. Sorry, play again).

    Frankly, I just can't justify an hour's drive to get to Lincoln Square. So unless I've got another reason to get into the city, a lot of the GNRs remain out of reach. Is there any high-quality Thai in the north burbs? Or even the west? I can get to Downers Grove faster.
    What is patriotism, but the love of good things we ate in our childhood?
    -- Lin Yutang
  • Post #82 - July 9th, 2013, 11:17 am
    Post #82 - July 9th, 2013, 11:17 am Post #82 - July 9th, 2013, 11:17 am
    My choice for my birthday dinner was Rainbow Cuisine, and we went last evening. I'm not posting any photos because you all have posted pictures of all the items that we ordered. The two of us ordered enough food that they pulled up the empty table next to us to accomodate all the dishes that were coming our way. My favorites were (I'll skip the Thai names) the crispy rice with fermented pork and Ginger Chicken. My husband loved the Red Curry with beef which i agree was fantastic. We will be back over and over. I'm delighted to hear that they are looking to expand into the space next door.

    The owner said, "I'm busy because of LTH!"

    PS: I'm eating leftover red curry as I write this.
    vickyp
  • Post #83 - July 9th, 2013, 11:46 am
    Post #83 - July 9th, 2013, 11:46 am Post #83 - July 9th, 2013, 11:46 am
    We also had dinner last night at Rainbow and enjoyed some selections from the Rainbow Greatest Hits Menu. I agree with the apparent consensus that their naem khao thawt and issan sausage are the best around. I'm also convinced that Rainbow puts out best-in-class yum hed (enoki mushroom salad) and kha naa muu krawp (crispy pork and broccoli). A new dish for me last night and a big, big winner was the neua daet diaw (fried beef jerky), which has a salty and earthy, rich beef flavor and is surprisingly tender. I ate the hoy tod (mussel pancake) but would not reorder, as mussels were rubbery and less than delicious.

    Service is extraordinarily friendly and enthusiastic, if a bit on the slow side.

    Pick your spots carefully and Rainbow can hang with the best Thai in town.

    --Rich
    I don't know what you think about dinner, but there must be a relation between the breakfast and the happiness. --Cemal Süreyya
  • Post #84 - July 9th, 2013, 11:59 am
    Post #84 - July 9th, 2013, 11:59 am Post #84 - July 9th, 2013, 11:59 am
    vickyp wrote:The owner said, "I'm busy because of LTH!"


    Makes me feel really good that LTH can make a difference for a small -- and worthy -- place like this.
    “Nobody exists on purpose. Nobody belongs anywhere. Everybody’s gonna die. Come watch TV?”
  • Post #85 - July 10th, 2013, 3:47 pm
    Post #85 - July 10th, 2013, 3:47 pm Post #85 - July 10th, 2013, 3:47 pm
    Thanks to everyone who posted information and reviews of Rainbow, it helped us immensely.

    My experience there was a bit odd. We went on a Saturday night, and found a full space. There was a three-top and an eight-top, and so our little twosome was SOL for dining in. We decided to order carryout. They took my order and directed us to a bench to wait. And wait we did. 55 minutes worth of wait. Meanwhile, dishes ambled out to the large table, one or two every five or ten minutes. The three-top left, and a two-top took over. They were there 30 minutes without getting a morsel of food. A few deliveries went out, but not that many.

    My read is that only one person of the three or four back there knows how to cook, and she is cooking very, shall we say, methodically.

    Arriving home, we found that the dishes we ordered ranged from amazing (naem khao thawt (utter perfection) and the crispy crepe) to very good (fried chicken, crisp lost due to wait for other dishes, I expect) to OK (crispy pad see-ew with beef, and free crab rangoon). Yes, that is a big order for two people.

    I certainly will go back, but not on a weekend night.
  • Post #86 - July 10th, 2013, 6:05 pm
    Post #86 - July 10th, 2013, 6:05 pm Post #86 - July 10th, 2013, 6:05 pm
    I was part of the 8-top, along with Laikom, Teresa & Fropones--and some out of town friends' of Laikom. We ordered everything at once and we waited too-because there is actually only one cook. Sorry we didn't get to talk to you--we most certainly would've shared while you waited--all the better for ordering more from there ever- growing menu of hits!
    "Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit; wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad." Miles Kington
  • Post #87 - July 10th, 2013, 8:25 pm
    Post #87 - July 10th, 2013, 8:25 pm Post #87 - July 10th, 2013, 8:25 pm
    Boudrolicious is actually missing a point. It may have seemed like they were serving us more quickly, but actually I preordered everything earlier in the day, which I would highly recommend doing. Calling in an order can save you quite a lot of time. The kitchen is set up for delivery/take out. They're adapting to the dine-in demand, but there is no fooling anyone- a lunch order, even when you're the only one there could still take an hour to completely fill. Obviously that doesn't stop me from loving the place.
    Part of the secret of a success in life is to eat what you like and let the food fight it out inside.

    -Mark Twain
  • Post #88 - July 11th, 2013, 8:10 am
    Post #88 - July 11th, 2013, 8:10 am Post #88 - July 11th, 2013, 8:10 am
    For lunch the solution to a no wait eat-in is to go around 2:00 PM and to order only one first course and one main dish . I have done that once a week over the last month and got my plate on the table in about 12 to 15 minutes.
    Good luck.
  • Post #89 - July 11th, 2013, 10:37 am
    Post #89 - July 11th, 2013, 10:37 am Post #89 - July 11th, 2013, 10:37 am
    i ate lunch twice last week at rainbow on a weekday and the wait wasn't terrible. the first time, the place was empty when our party of 3 arrived around 12:30. the second time, there was one other customer and 2 fried rice take out orders ahead of me. the only comment i can add to the discussion about the food is that we were all disappointed in the mussel pancake. it was light, crisp, greasy and very bland. it's the only dish i wouldn't bother ordering again. the issan sausage and the naem kha tod were the highlights for me.

    what i find really strange is that none of the customers i saw were given the authentic menu, only the standard menu. seeing as how their upsurge in business is coming from excitement about the authentic menu, this seems like a missed opportunity.....
  • Post #90 - July 11th, 2013, 10:56 am
    Post #90 - July 11th, 2013, 10:56 am Post #90 - July 11th, 2013, 10:56 am
    I agree the mussel pancake is a bust. I've had it twice and is has always been the weakest link in the meal - thicker, bland, and flabby with only small areas of crispness. I even attempted to explain my disappointment last time, when the owner asked why we had only eaten a few bites and didn't want to take the rest home. From talking to him, it sounded like they purposely make it "wet" as I believe he called it, because that's how some people prefer it (in other words, NOT light/crispy/thin/etc).

    Considering how many dozens of other things I love here, not to mention the fact the mussel pancake has never been my favoriate Thai dish at any restaurant, now I just order all the other things I love, and haven't had another disappointment since. Everything has ranged from quite good to great.

Contact

About

Team

Advertize

Close

Chat

Articles

Guide

Events

more