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praise for Lao Sze Chuan

praise for Lao Sze Chuan
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  • Post #451 - October 25th, 2014, 6:07 am
    Post #451 - October 25th, 2014, 6:07 am Post #451 - October 25th, 2014, 6:07 am
    "No, officer, it's chicken crack."
  • Post #452 - October 25th, 2014, 5:40 pm
    Post #452 - October 25th, 2014, 5:40 pm Post #452 - October 25th, 2014, 5:40 pm
    tapler wrote:"No, officer, it's chicken crack."


    Maybe PETA got wind of that -- crack for chickens!!
    "All great change in America begins at the dinner table." Ronald Reagan

    http://midwestmaize.wordpress.com
  • Post #453 - December 18th, 2014, 9:04 pm
    Post #453 - December 18th, 2014, 9:04 pm Post #453 - December 18th, 2014, 9:04 pm
    Lao Sze Chuan opens on Michigan Avenue

    http://www.chicagotribune.com/entertain ... story.html
    520 N. Michigan Ave.
    Chicago, IL 60611
    312-818-8099
    Never order barbecue in a place that also serves quiche - Lewis Grizzard
  • Post #454 - December 25th, 2014, 10:46 pm
    Post #454 - December 25th, 2014, 10:46 pm Post #454 - December 25th, 2014, 10:46 pm
    Xmas eve was very busy at the Skokie outlet, took 40 minutes to get dumplings, but after that the rest of the food came out swiftly. A couple new items for us: twice fried duck was awesome, a little smoky. Lamb with young ginger on the other hand seemed like an error only in that the cumin version is just so awesome. Most of the rest was old favorites.
    What is patriotism, but the love of good things we ate in our childhood?
    -- Lin Yutang
  • Post #455 - December 25th, 2014, 10:51 pm
    Post #455 - December 25th, 2014, 10:51 pm Post #455 - December 25th, 2014, 10:51 pm
    JoelF wrote:Xmas eve was very busy at the Skokie outlet, took 40 minutes to get dumplings, but after that the rest of the food came out swiftly. A couple new items for us: twice fried duck was awesome, a little smoky. Lamb with young ginger on the other hand seemed like an error only in that the cumin version is just so awesome. Most of the rest was old favorites.

    My friend was actually turned away at about 8 pm on Christmas night at the LSC Chinatown location . . . on a carry-out attempt! That's how busy they were.

    =R=
    There are many things that are legal that are not a great idea --Nick Shabazz

    Every human interaction is an opportunity for disappointment --RS

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

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #456 - December 26th, 2014, 9:16 am
    Post #456 - December 26th, 2014, 9:16 am Post #456 - December 26th, 2014, 9:16 am
    ronnie_suburban wrote:
    JoelF wrote:Xmas eve was very busy at the Skokie outlet, took 40 minutes to get dumplings, but after that the rest of the food came out swiftly. A couple new items for us: twice fried duck was awesome, a little smoky. Lamb with young ginger on the other hand seemed like an error only in that the cumin version is just so awesome. Most of the rest was old favorites.

    My friend was actually turned away at about 8 pm on Christmas night at the LSC Chinatown location . . . on a carry-out attempt! That's how busy they were.

    =R=


    http://www.washingtonpost.com/postevery ... e-stopped/
    Think Yiddish, Dress British - Advice of Evil Ronnie to me.
  • Post #457 - December 26th, 2014, 10:40 am
    Post #457 - December 26th, 2014, 10:40 am Post #457 - December 26th, 2014, 10:40 am
    Anyone have any recent good, indifferent, or bad experiences with the original location since all the news on the police and food inspections?
  • Post #458 - December 26th, 2014, 5:02 pm
    Post #458 - December 26th, 2014, 5:02 pm Post #458 - December 26th, 2014, 5:02 pm
    We had carry out on Christmas eve from the Chinatown location. Called it in early and said we'd pick up at 7, and we did. Everything was very good, even taking into account that it sat some at the restaurant, and then it sat some more in the car on the way home.
    Leek

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  • Post #459 - December 27th, 2014, 9:50 am
    Post #459 - December 27th, 2014, 9:50 am Post #459 - December 27th, 2014, 9:50 am
    Vital Information wrote:
    ronnie_suburban wrote:
    JoelF wrote:Xmas eve was very busy at the Skokie outlet, took 40 minutes to get dumplings, but after that the rest of the food came out swiftly. A couple new items for us: twice fried duck was awesome, a little smoky. Lamb with young ginger on the other hand seemed like an error only in that the cumin version is just so awesome. Most of the rest was old favorites.

    My friend was actually turned away at about 8 pm on Christmas night at the LSC Chinatown location . . . on a carry-out attempt! That's how busy they were.

    =R=


    http://www.washingtonpost.com/postevery ... e-stopped/


    DH chose,so we went to Moon Palace for dinner. Luckily, I had him make a reservation. 4:45 pm on Christmas we smashed through a scrum of folks waiting and were immediately seated. When we left, about 70 minutes later for a movie, we smashed out of a similar scrum. It was crazy in there. I can only imagine what LSC or Lao Hunan were like.
    Ava-"If you get down and out, just get in the kitchen and bake a cake."- Jean Strickland

    Horto In Urbs- Falling in love with Urban Vegetable Gardening
  • Post #460 - December 27th, 2014, 10:36 am
    Post #460 - December 27th, 2014, 10:36 am Post #460 - December 27th, 2014, 10:36 am
    Had the 3 course $7.95 lunch at LSC Uptown recently and it was delicious ... making it a regular event now.
  • Post #461 - December 29th, 2014, 3:21 pm
    Post #461 - December 29th, 2014, 3:21 pm Post #461 - December 29th, 2014, 3:21 pm
    pairs4life wrote:
    Vital Information wrote:
    ronnie_suburban wrote:My friend was actually turned away at about 8 pm on Christmas night at the LSC Chinatown location . . . on a carry-out attempt! That's how busy they were.

    =R=


    http://www.washingtonpost.com/postevery ... e-stopped/


    DH chose,so we went to Moon Palace for dinner. Luckily, I had him make a reservation. 4:45 pm on Christmas we smashed through a scrum of folks waiting and were immediately seated. When we left, about 70 minutes later for a movie, we smashed out of a similar scrum. It was crazy in there. I can only imagine what LSC or Lao Hunan were like.


    We made the mistake of trying to go to LSC on Christmas and were quoted over an hour and a half wait. We walked down to Lao Hunan and were seated right away (I'd estimate that we arrived at LH somewhere around 5:15). It was quite the unexpected surprise.
  • Post #462 - December 29th, 2014, 4:05 pm
    Post #462 - December 29th, 2014, 4:05 pm Post #462 - December 29th, 2014, 4:05 pm
    I tried to order from the Uptown location through GrubHub on Christmas. When I got to the payment screen the site announced that the location was closed for the holiday. I called and the phone was off the hook. I called the Chinatown location and they told me the Uptown location was open. I have to assume this means they were super busy, but I sadly didn't have the time to get out of the house and go over there myself. Ended up ordering Cantonese from somewhere else random on GrubHub; it was not my favorite. This is the first time in several years that Lao Sze Chuan didn't make my non-Christmas Christmas. Next year I guess I'll try to order earlier in the day.
  • Post #463 - December 29th, 2014, 9:41 pm
    Post #463 - December 29th, 2014, 9:41 pm Post #463 - December 29th, 2014, 9:41 pm
    gnarchief wrote:[

    We made the mistake of trying to go to LSC on Christmas and were quoted over an hour and a half wait.


    We were right there too with 16 people on Xmas, but with a reservation placed at 1pm Xmas day at Joy Yee for 6pm. Got us sat at 6:20pm which surprised me. Chinatown was packed that day, I've never seen traffic around there like that.
  • Post #464 - December 30th, 2014, 9:58 am
    Post #464 - December 30th, 2014, 9:58 am Post #464 - December 30th, 2014, 9:58 am
    Went to the Evanston version of LSC last week and must admit it was very underwhelming. Most of the dishes were really just OK - except for the Szechuan green beans, which were outstanding.
  • Post #465 - December 30th, 2014, 10:12 am
    Post #465 - December 30th, 2014, 10:12 am Post #465 - December 30th, 2014, 10:12 am
    stoutisgoodfood wrote:Went to the Evanston version of LSC last week and must admit it was very underwhelming. Most of the dishes were really just OK - except for the Szechuan green beans, which were outstanding.

    Have you been before or was this your first visit? I'm just curious because there's certainly variability at the Skokie location but after a dozen+ visits there, I find it to be no greater than what I typically encounter at the flagship in Chinatown. I've never been to the Evanston location.

    =R=
    There are many things that are legal that are not a great idea --Nick Shabazz

    Every human interaction is an opportunity for disappointment --RS

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

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #466 - December 30th, 2014, 11:09 pm
    Post #466 - December 30th, 2014, 11:09 pm Post #466 - December 30th, 2014, 11:09 pm
    ronnie_suburban wrote:
    stoutisgoodfood wrote:Went to the Evanston version of LSC last week and must admit it was very underwhelming. Most of the dishes were really just OK - except for the Szechuan green beans, which were outstanding.

    Have you been before or was this your first visit? I'm just curious because there's certainly variability at the Skokie location but after a dozen+ visits there, I find it to be no greater than what I typically encounter at the flagship in Chinatown. I've never been to the Evanston location.

    =R=


    I went to The Evanston location on a bustling Saturday last spring and found no difference in delicious food offerings from Chinatown. Perhaps the B-Team was on last week, especially with the opening downtown.
    Ava-"If you get down and out, just get in the kitchen and bake a cake."- Jean Strickland

    Horto In Urbs- Falling in love with Urban Vegetable Gardening
  • Post #467 - December 31st, 2014, 9:15 am
    Post #467 - December 31st, 2014, 9:15 am Post #467 - December 31st, 2014, 9:15 am
    It was my first trip to the Evanston locale, but I've been to the downtown spot a few times and also tried DG. Things just seemed flat (except for the beans!) compared to previous visits. And I'm fully aware of the potential differences between chefs, that seems to happen quite a bit at my 'regular' chinese choices.
  • Post #468 - December 31st, 2014, 9:27 am
    Post #468 - December 31st, 2014, 9:27 am Post #468 - December 31st, 2014, 9:27 am
    I had a really good dish at Lao Szechuan Uptown: Fish filet mapo tofu. Best of both worlds.
  • Post #469 - December 31st, 2014, 10:13 am
    Post #469 - December 31st, 2014, 10:13 am Post #469 - December 31st, 2014, 10:13 am
    dagrassroots wrote:I had a really good dish at Lao Szechuan Uptown: Fish filet mapo tofu. Best of both worlds.



    That sounds like a great one to try.
    "I live on good soup, not on fine words." -Moliere
  • Post #470 - December 31st, 2014, 10:56 am
    Post #470 - December 31st, 2014, 10:56 am Post #470 - December 31st, 2014, 10:56 am
    With all the reservation notes, I want to add that my Christmas eve at Skokie was nearly a panic: My reservation for 8 people at 6:30PM, which I'd made at the LTH Holiday Party weeks before, was lost. However, they seated us immediately. About a half-hour later, the place was completely full -- very glad the timing was right.
    What is patriotism, but the love of good things we ate in our childhood?
    -- Lin Yutang
  • Post #471 - December 31st, 2014, 12:14 pm
    Post #471 - December 31st, 2014, 12:14 pm Post #471 - December 31st, 2014, 12:14 pm
    I have had takeout from the Skokie location, twice now and found the dishes to be about the same as from the Chinatown location, uniformly excellent.
    I don't bother with any location in Wisconsin anymore for Chinese.-Dick
  • Post #472 - April 28th, 2015, 1:29 pm
    Post #472 - April 28th, 2015, 1:29 pm Post #472 - April 28th, 2015, 1:29 pm
    http://chicago.eater.com/2015/4/28/8508 ... -tax-fraud

    Remember the mystery surrounding last year's FBI raid of nine of Tony Hu's Chinatown restaurants? The Sun-Times sifted through previously sealed court documents and found the feds wanted evidence of tax fraud, though no criminal charges have been filed.

    Hu, a.k.a. "The Mayor of Chinatown," has since sold off some his Chinatown restaurants, with plans to sell more from the Tony Gourmet Group. He has said he wants to focus on his Lao Sze Chuan chain away from Chinatown. They opened another location in December in downtown Chicago.

    But the Sun-Times story details discrepancies between what was reported to the IRS and records kept by Hu's employees. For example, the 2009 tax return for Lao Sze Chuan's suburban Downers Grove location read the restaurant brought in $656,866, while a manager's spreadsheet read $1.066 million, according to the report.

    FBI agents dined at Hu's restaurants about year before the raid for recon, hoping to gain more familiarity with Hu's accounting and computer systems, according to the Sun-Times. Hu's in China, and wasn't available for comment, the Sun-Times added.
  • Post #473 - April 28th, 2015, 11:50 pm
    Post #473 - April 28th, 2015, 11:50 pm Post #473 - April 28th, 2015, 11:50 pm
    I should have known better than to go to the downtown LSC today given the news, but we had a Gilt deal for a Peking duck dinner. Thankfully we only paid $50 after a discount on the deal since our meal was not really worth even that. They claim it's a $120 value, but that would imply you get a full Peking duck ($88 list price). We maybe got half a serving but the carver actually moved on and served another table with the same duck. The skin was nice, but underseasoned. The spicy cabbage starter was awful and greasy (have had a few times at the Uptown location and liked it - this was not the same). Garlic green beans were nothing special, duck broth was tasteless, and fried rice was nondescript. Coconut ice cream to end was fine. But to claim a $120 value for that meal is laughable given the portion of duck actually served. Service was awful with a 5+ minute wait at the service desk for the hostess. Server was also lousy - I asked for chili sauce or anything spicy and was given soy sauce. Manager looked like he was not in control and the whole place felt doomed. I'll be shocked if it's open at the end of the year, even without today's news.
  • Post #474 - April 29th, 2015, 7:49 am
    Post #474 - April 29th, 2015, 7:49 am Post #474 - April 29th, 2015, 7:49 am
    FBI agents dined at Hu's restaurants about year before the raid for recon, hoping to gain more familiarity with Hu's accounting and computer systems, according to the Sun-Times


    Suuuuure, that's the reason. Three chili chicken had nothing to do with it, right G-men?
  • Post #475 - April 29th, 2015, 9:32 am
    Post #475 - April 29th, 2015, 9:32 am Post #475 - April 29th, 2015, 9:32 am
    Doing some shopping at Old Orchard and in need of some kind of quick lunch at 2:OO PM Yesterday I decided to try LSC in Skokie. Contrary to the one in Evanston where I go often for lunch where the prices are the same at lunch as they are for dinner, I was surprised to find out that they have lunch prices for about 20 dishes. They include a small bowl of soup, a Shanghai (vegetarian) egg and steamed or fried rice. I ordered the same dish that i ordered 2 weeks ago in Evanston, Chicken with garlic sauce. Unfortunately it was a disaster compared to its Evanston cousin which is very generous and flavorful. It consisted of a very small amount of poorly sliced chicken, lots of green bell pepper (instead of red in Evanston), no bamboo shoots, lots of white mushrooms, and a very gelatinous and gooey poorly seasoned sauce. The garlic flavor was totally absent from the dish. Small portion of course on the plate, which is normal considering the price. The steamed rice was overcooked, the hot and sour soup totally flavorless and on the watery side, and the Shanghai egg roll lukewarm and almost empty. at 2:00 PM only one table was occupied. I am not surprised. Having read good reviews on LTH about the Skokie place I was quite disappointed.
  • Post #476 - May 19th, 2015, 5:35 pm
    Post #476 - May 19th, 2015, 5:35 pm Post #476 - May 19th, 2015, 5:35 pm
    Picked up some of Tony's Chili Chicken (by accident, thought I ordered Dry Chili Chicken) to try and combat a cold. It's a bit too sweet for me, and not as hot as I was hoping. It's hot, but not renounce-your-sins hot. It reminds me a little of orange chicken. Next time, back to dry.
    I want to have a good body, but not as much as I want dessert. ~ Jason Love

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  • Post #477 - May 19th, 2015, 9:52 pm
    Post #477 - May 19th, 2015, 9:52 pm Post #477 - May 19th, 2015, 9:52 pm
    In Downers Grove Tony's Three Chili Chicken is not at lunch, only at supper. They have a similarly named dish, but it is not the same.
  • Post #478 - September 9th, 2015, 4:21 pm
    Post #478 - September 9th, 2015, 4:21 pm Post #478 - September 9th, 2015, 4:21 pm
    Chinatown location has been closed since last Friday due to health violations.

    http://chicago.eater.com/2015/9/9/92977 ... -shut-down
  • Post #479 - September 10th, 2015, 1:59 am
    Post #479 - September 10th, 2015, 1:59 am Post #479 - September 10th, 2015, 1:59 am
    It used to be that you would see Tony almost every time you went in to LSC in Chinatown. Since that time, he has really expanded dramatically, and of course, we cannot expect quite the same amount of attention. But after the raids, and now this incident, I really do wonder whether he has become lax with what was the flagship of his empire.
  • Post #480 - September 10th, 2015, 9:32 am
    Post #480 - September 10th, 2015, 9:32 am Post #480 - September 10th, 2015, 9:32 am
    Cyriaco wrote:It used to be that you would see Tony almost every time you went in to LSC in Chinatown. Since that time, he has really expanded dramatically, and of course, we cannot expect quite the same amount of attention. But after the raids, and now this incident, I really do wonder whether he has become lax with what was the flagship of his empire.

    Not sure how involved Tony still is, or even if he is anymore, based on this piece from Eater that was posted back in February of this year . . .

    Tony Hu may not be known as the "Mayor of Chinatown" for much longer. But if his plans come to fruition, he may soon be much more well known outside of Chicago.

    Following the sale of Lao Beijing in January, Hu says he's planning to sell most of his restaurants in Chinatown. The original Lao Sze Chuan may be his only restaurant left in the neighborhood when all is said and done, which is the brand he says he's concentrating on for the future.

    =R=
    There are many things that are legal that are not a great idea --Nick Shabazz

    Every human interaction is an opportunity for disappointment --RS

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

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain

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