Thai Restaurants in Illinois

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Thalia Spice is a pan-Asian bistro that invites diners on a world tour of flavors served in a modern lounge. Co-owner Anna Makmok's mother lends her Thai and Laotian expertise in the kitchen, and co-owner Vincent Tan culls from his Malaysian and Singaporean roots for many of the menu's exotic dishes.

Where's That Recipe From?

  • Fried tofu with a sweet peanut sauce for dipping—Singapore
  • Grilled beef tossed with red onions, cilantro, scallions, mint, and roasted rice—Laos
  • Seafood, tofu, bean sprouts, boiled egg, scallions, and noodles in a curry laksa soup—Malaysia
  • Chicken simmered in soy sauce and white vinegar flavored with bay leaves—Philippines
  • Potatoes and onions cooked in a coconut-milk-based curry with roasted peanuts and a choice of meat—Thailand
  • Chicken and vegetable gyoza with a sweet soy dipping sauce—Japan
  • Indian chicken makhani with an Indian-style curry sauce—Unknown

From the Press

  • Chicago Reader: "Even Thalia's fusion creations—sake baby ribs, spicy salmon maki—show a commitment to fresh ingredients and honest flavors, so even if you're skeptical of such offerings, as I am, get over yourself and enjoy."
  • Featured on Check, Please! in 2011
  • Gayot: "Rustic wood and swirls of ironwork make the place feel organic and comfortable; fuzzy roll pillows lining a banquette exude hip flair."
833 W Chicago Ave.

Considering the diversity of backgrounds that have contributed to Red Chopsticks, it's not surprising that the restaurant has a pan-Asian style. The founders previously conceived Oysy Sushi and Baisi Thai, and Executive Chef Li, a native of Zhengzhou City, left his post at the Zhengzhou International Hotel to man kitchens in St. Louis and Chicago's Chinatown before taking his post at Red Chopsticks.

The menu is predominantly Chinese, as evidenced by entrees such as szechuan pork and kung pao beef. But patrons will also find other Asian specialties, including pad thai noodles that entangle cabbage, chicken, and peanuts, and clear singapore rice noodles colored by bean sprouts and carrots. No matter the dish, Chef Li prepares everything from scratch, including sauces, pastries, and silverware, and uses a fresh assortment of veggies and produce.

4309 E New York St

Ornately wooden screens with curlicues of carved vines and leaves free the aromas of spices, sweet basil, and coconut milk to drift between booths. Beneath lavender walls and intricate woodcarvings, diners slip chopsticks into noodle-tangled bowls of chicken, shrimp, stir-fried vegetables, and curry. As the clatter of plates and conversation gives way to happy sighs, Thai Hut's dessert roster parades out thai custard and fried bananas, which work well as punishment for children who do too much homework.

1441 Sandy Hollow Rd

The delicate silk hangings and handmade wood accents at Bangkok Village effervesce with authentic Thai ambiance alongside an extensive menu of vegetarian and meat dishes. A sautéed slice of spicy chicken, beef, or pork sporting a basil overcoat struts across sweet bell peppers, onions, mushrooms, and hot peppers($9.99); cashew chicken shows its sweeter side with peanuts, pineapple, and sweet pepper ($9.99). In the Star Delight, a mélange of snow peas, carrots, cabbage, broccoli, and fresh bean sprouts lure herbivores with a homemade sauce and whispered promises of birthday pony rides ($8.99). Lightly seasoned bean-thread noodles wrap around your choice of protein or tofu ($9.99), shrimp ($11.99), or seafood ($11.99) in the Transparent Delight, which features a medley of stir-fried baby corn, bean sprouts, peapods, mushrooms, onions, sweet pepper, and egg.

22 E Chicago Ave

At Little Panda Chinese Restaurant, plates of beef and chicken glisten with sweet, tangy Asian sauces. The cooks prepare Chinese classics, along with Thai and Japanese dishes, to make for an MSG-free menu with plentiful, opportunities to sample veggies, chicken, shrimp, or beef. House specialties include steak and shrimp delicacy—beef and jumbo shrimps sauteed with vegetables, slathered in spicy black pepper sauce—and mongolian beef—pan-seared beef in a spicy Chinese barbecue sauce. Vegetarian options include spicy szechwan vegetables and vegetable pad thai.

267 S Randall Rd

Siam Pasta has been serving classic Thai dishes since 1993 with a focus on the bouquet of aromatic, fiery spices that give each dish its personality. Diners whet their appetites with nibbles of chicken satay or baby egg rolls before savoring plates of spicy, crispy duck or cashew chicken. The cooks also toss rice, glass, or egg noodles with barbecue pork, roast duck, and sauces that transform the dish into spicy crazy noodles, pad thai, or curried chicken pasta.

809 Dempster St