A Quick Word:
UIC and the Little Italy area is for some reason saturated with Thai restaurants. There are at least five that I can count just off the top of my head. One of the ones we frequent is Golden Thai. This one is located closer to Ashland Ave., or the westside of Taylor Street. Anyway, the restaurant is usually not too busy for dine-in service, but they tend to get slammed for to-go orders and catering. The food here isn't the most authentic Thai food you can get, and their pad thai is nothing close to pad thai I ate in Thailand, but it is definitely above average. Their portions are generous and the cost of most of their dishes is student friendly. The staff is a little inattentive and the restaurant can have a weird feel when you are the only one dining in. Overall, it is a good restaurant, just not great... but as I have mentioned, above average gives them a rating of 3.5-miles.
What We Ate
Chicken Pad Thai
The signature dish of Thai cuisine is probably Pad Thai. This noodle dish is made with chicken, crushed peanuts, eggs, raw bean sprouts, and a variety of other vegetables. Its signature flavor comes from a tamarind sauce and lime juice. Here, the pad thai is classic. You get the choice of chicken, beef, tofu, or shrimp. I highly suggest the chicken because the chicken holds the sauce very well. The portion is huge. I think it is easily shared by two or three people as long as other dishes are also ordered. There was a nice sweet, salty, sour profile and also great contrasting textures. It isn't Thailand pad thai, but it isn't bad. I will definitely order again.
Chicken Green Curry
The other dish we ordered was the green curry. It is made with a mixture of chicken, bamboo shoots, fresh basil, bell peppers, and that coconut curry sauce. It comes with a bowl of white rice. I will say they are very generous with the amount of protein and the size of the curry dish. However, they skimp on the white rice (which is surprisingly expensive for the amount you order on the side). I wish it came with multiple bowls of white rice, especially if you are sharing the meal. The curry isn't spicy, so make sure to tell them extra spicy if you want any spice at all. It is good, not great... but definitely above average.
- Plenty of pay street parking on Taylor St. If you are picking up, flashing 15-minute parking is available in front of Pompei restaurant.
- Don't get the appetizers. The shumai is a rip off. The order comes with 6 small frozen dumplings lightly steamed and served with a sauce. It costs $4 which is absolutely ridiculous.
How far would I walk for this food?