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You've got to sink your teeth into Katy's Dumplings! [long]

You've got to sink your teeth into Katy's Dumplings! [long]
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  • Post #691 - November 8th, 2019, 8:37 am
    Post #691 - November 8th, 2019, 8:37 am Post #691 - November 8th, 2019, 8:37 am
    Had a knockout new bowl yesterday– their Chongqing "ma la" noodles from the specials board. Noods were perf. Broth was robust, salty, decidedly more of a soup than the dan dan. The toppings set things apart, much like the set of deftly prepped ingredients that Santander highlights above in his recent dan dan–brightly fresh chives, a judicious dallop of highly seasoned ground pork, sesame seeds, and new to the mix, super fresh toasted peanuts. It did not disappoint in the ma la dept.– slicked with a chili oil ratcheted up several notches from the stuff on the table and perfectly sequenced pops of numbing peppercorn.

    I can't think of a better bowl I've had from them.
  • Post #692 - November 13th, 2019, 1:02 pm
    Post #692 - November 13th, 2019, 1:02 pm Post #692 - November 13th, 2019, 1:02 pm
    I've been going in every 7-8 weeks this year when I am back in Chicago visiting my dad. The quality has been excellent, and whatever dip there was when the ownership originally changed (and there definitely was a slight one in quality as well as quantity) has been totally rectified.

    I'm a creature of habit, so I probably get spicy pork noodle 80% of the time and pancake 20% of the time. The occasional order of dumplings if I'm with somebody. Everything has been on point all year.
    "Fried chicken should unify us, as opposed to tearing us apart. " - Bomani Jones
  • Post #693 - November 13th, 2019, 1:43 pm
    Post #693 - November 13th, 2019, 1:43 pm Post #693 - November 13th, 2019, 1:43 pm
    Went this past weekend

    Chicken fried noodle - as good as usual!

    Pork/ chive potstickers - inedible
    Thick, dry wrappers; Watery, flavorless filling
    These used to be my favorite in Chicago, quality continues to go down

    I asked about specials via phone, none available that day
  • Post #694 - November 15th, 2019, 9:31 pm
    Post #694 - November 15th, 2019, 9:31 pm Post #694 - November 15th, 2019, 9:31 pm
    Combination Fried Noodle hit the spot today. Gotta justify schlepping out here to see a client. :roll:
    Never order barbecue in a place that also serves quiche - Lewis Grizzard
  • Post #695 - November 19th, 2019, 10:01 am
    Post #695 - November 19th, 2019, 10:01 am Post #695 - November 19th, 2019, 10:01 am
    I rarely am able to get so far out into the burbs but I was in Hodgkins to do some work at the shooting range (Shoot Point Blank, great facility BTW). Finding myself within spitting distance of Westmont, I went for an early lunch at Katys. Now to provide some background: my family is Taiwanese and beef noodle soup is the national dish of Taiwan. I have had this dish in Beijing, Shanghai and Taiwan itself, as well as many home cooked versions made by mom. My expectations for beef noodles are very high and I was prepared to give Katy's a somewhat condescending review of "pretty good, for the midwest".

    Well I was totally wrong about that. Katy's beef noodle soup is not just good for the midwest - Katy's is the best I've had in my LIFE. Better than Taiwan or the mainland, even better than, dare I say it, mom's version (nobody tell her). Those springy hand made noodles soaking up spicy, garlicky broth with chili oil - just fantastic! The beef shank was very tender with no excess tendon or gristly bits, something I have not been able to replicate at home:
    Image
    Image

    The scallion pancake is also damn good. It reminds me more of a mainland pancake, a bit heavier and oilier than the Taiwan variants, but still very flaky and crisp.
    Image

    I got an order of spicy chicken chow mein to go as well. This is a very well done version of the standard. Not transcendent like the beef noodles, but a well excecuted stir fry with plenty of wok hei. It was a good trunk-top meal on a cold day.
    Image

    It goes without saying Katy's is an A+ joint. I just wish I lived closer.
  • Post #696 - November 19th, 2019, 11:46 am
    Post #696 - November 19th, 2019, 11:46 am Post #696 - November 19th, 2019, 11:46 am
    eating while walking wrote:
    Well I was totally wrong about that. Katy's beef noodle soup is not just good for the midwest - Katy's is the best I've had in my LIFE.


    YES! This is something I've been meaning to add to this thread for a while. Katy's gets a lot of love on LTH, but I've never seen their beef noodle soup (niu rou mian) brought up. The broth is rich and complex, and like you said the beef is perfect. Whenever I visit the parents in Westmont, my mom (also Taiwanese) always has an order for me to take back home. The fresh made noodles is one bowl's worth, but the soup portion is enough for two bowls (I typically just use dried noodles for the second meal but the soup is so good, it doesn't matter that much).

    Just reading through this thread, the quality level throughout the menu is obviously high, but hopefully this gets more people to try the beef noodle soup. Thanks for sharing.
  • Post #697 - November 19th, 2019, 1:23 pm
    Post #697 - November 19th, 2019, 1:23 pm Post #697 - November 19th, 2019, 1:23 pm
    Beef noodle or beef tendon noodle is my usual go to. So damn tasty!
  • Post #698 - November 20th, 2019, 9:53 am
    Post #698 - November 20th, 2019, 9:53 am Post #698 - November 20th, 2019, 9:53 am
    bg23 wrote:
    eating while walking wrote:
    Well I was totally wrong about that. Katy's beef noodle soup is not just good for the midwest - Katy's is the best I've had in my LIFE.


    YES! This is something I've been meaning to add to this thread for a while. Katy's gets a lot of love on LTH, but I've never seen their beef noodle soup (niu rou mian) brought up.


    I think it was brought up in the early mentions, 15 years ago, as the first reason to visit K’s. (See first post and links in this string.) Still the best. Happy to hear it’s going strong from someone with reason to know what’s what.

    I visited for the first time in a long while recently. Everything seemed to be good as always in the noodle department. I was disappointed that fish dumplings were 86’d and pork and napa dumplings weren’t up to par (both wrappers and filling) as suggested recently. Still quite good but not the best in Chicago (of course we now have some other terrific dumpling offerings in the city).

    Jeff
  • Post #699 - November 21st, 2019, 10:32 am
    Post #699 - November 21st, 2019, 10:32 am Post #699 - November 21st, 2019, 10:32 am
    JeffB wrote:Still quite good but not the best in Chicago (of course we now have some other terrific dumpling offerings in the city).
    Jeff

    I'm not up to date on the Chicago dumpling scene, would you mind listing a few good places to try? I miss getting a basket of steamed dumplings with hand made skins (and tasty fillings of possibly questionable provenance) from street vendors in China...
  • Post #700 - November 21st, 2019, 10:57 am
    Post #700 - November 21st, 2019, 10:57 am Post #700 - November 21st, 2019, 10:57 am
    eating while walking wrote:
    JeffB wrote:Still quite good but not the best in Chicago (of course we now have some other terrific dumpling offerings in the city).
    Jeff

    I'm not up to date on the Chicago dumpling scene, would you mind listing a few good places to try? I miss getting a basket of steamed dumplings with hand made skins (and tasty fillings of possibly questionable provenance) from street vendors in China...


    Qing Xiang Yuan Dumplings has the best XLB in the city as far as I am aware.
    2002 S Wentworth Ave #103
    Chicago, IL 60616
    qxydumplings.com
  • Post #701 - November 27th, 2019, 7:16 pm
    Post #701 - November 27th, 2019, 7:16 pm Post #701 - November 27th, 2019, 7:16 pm
    We went to the Oak Park location on the rumor that things were better. They are. According to staff, the original owner is back in charge- homemade noodles and homemade dumplings are back! Overall, food was so much better than the last time we were there!
  • Post #702 - November 28th, 2019, 2:04 pm
    Post #702 - November 28th, 2019, 2:04 pm Post #702 - November 28th, 2019, 2:04 pm
    This would be amazing and something I'm legitimately thankful for
  • Post #703 - November 28th, 2019, 3:01 pm
    Post #703 - November 28th, 2019, 3:01 pm Post #703 - November 28th, 2019, 3:01 pm
    If true, it's a Thanksgiving miracle.
  • Post #704 - December 7th, 2019, 10:27 am
    Post #704 - December 7th, 2019, 10:27 am Post #704 - December 7th, 2019, 10:27 am
    Hoping for some clarification from one of you folks that may know. When Katy's in Oak Park first opened, its relationship to the Westmont location seemed pretty clear. Same food, same preparation, shared website. But since then there have been numerous changes (or rumors of changes) of ownership at the Oak Park location, and indeed, the quality or at least consistency of the food there began to fluctuate wildly. (Although I've had some hit or miss meals at the Westmont location as well; as I posted somewhere earlier, the last time I visited the Westmont location the dumplings, of all things, were totally off.) But even through a few changes of ownership or chefs or whatever happened, the Oak Park location remained associated with the Westmont location, at the very least though the website. Iirc, you could always click through from the Westmont site to the Oak Park site.

    What's confusing me is whether the Oak Park location has indeed been connected to the Westmont location by any more than name these past few years. If the "original" owner has indeed returned ... where has the original owner been all this time? Back at the Westmont location? Or is this the "original" owner from the first time the Oak Park outpost opened? If there have in fact been subsequent owners after the original owner, then where did they come from? Were they directly associated with the Westmont location and its owner? Or did they just coast on the Katy's name with no other direct connection?

    I was thinking of grabbing food from the OP location today, but the "fool me twice ... " side of my brain is giving me pause.
  • Post #705 - December 7th, 2019, 10:41 am
    Post #705 - December 7th, 2019, 10:41 am Post #705 - December 7th, 2019, 10:41 am
    Vitesse98 wrote:If the "original" owner has indeed returned ... where has the original owner been all this time? Back at the Westmont location? Or is this the "original" owner from the first time the Oak Park outpost opened?

    Mr Red Shirt?
    "Very good... but not my favorite." ~ Johnny Depp as Roux the Gypsy in Chocolat

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