Tuesday, July 28, 2009

~ Fun, Hip Restaurant in Chicago Chinatown ~

Yes...it's another blog post about food. What can I say? I just love eating! So, in most of the Chinatowns I have been to in US and Canada, most of the restaurants are not very cool. The food maybe great, but service usually borderline sucking, and decor is usually outdated or tacky. Simply put, if a guy takes me to a restaurant in any Chinatowns for a first date, there will probably not be a second date. Except if he takes me to Joy Yee's.

Joy Yee's Noodles opened probably about 10-12 years ago. Back then, bubble tea was a huge success all across Asia and Joy Yee's was the first one to bring it over to Chicago. They also make their drinks using real fruits, which fits so perfectly with the healthy lifestyles that we are striving for nowadays. What is bubble tea you ask? Well...It's tea or smoothie with tapioca balls basicaly. There are different varieties of gelatin like pieces that can be used instead of regular tapioca balls. Here's one that I got at Joy Yee's last time I was there.

It's Joy Yee's Jumbo Bubble Tea! Here's a look at the regular one. I must warn you that Joy Yee's bubble tea/smoothies are bigger most of the other restaurants. Maybe it's an illusion with the thick glass. I am not sure.

So, food wise, they are above average. It's not like spectacular like Isla Pilipina, but I wouldn't mind eating it a few times a week. That's also because they have such a huge variety! It's like the best of all the Asian cuisines, all gathered in one restaurant! Korean, Thai, Vietnamese, Chinese (of course) and more! Let's look at what we ate.

The Joy Yee Appetizer platter. It had spring rolls, egg rolls, unidentified fish cakes, and chicken lettuce wrap on shrimp cracker. It was good and a nice sampler.

Thai spicy shrimp bamboo rice. Isn't the container fun? It was yummy also.

You know what makes eating here even more fun? It's the life size replicas of the food by the entrance! Look at these noodles!

King of all Pho!

Fried fish with spicy sauce. I saw someone eating it. It really is served with the fish standing up like that.

Korean stone bowl rice....

Also, their menu has lots of pictures so ordering is easy. Well, it's easy to know what things are, but it's hard to decide what you want. Now, this food replica thing can be very tacky, but they do it so well! They also open all the huge windows on nice summer days so it's very nice to sit by the window and have people gawk at your delicious food.

They are also very creative. Every time I go there, which is at least a few times a year, they have new things. New menu items, new decor. Very hip and fun place to eat and hang out. If you are stumbling around Chinatown, wondering where you should eat, this is definitely a place you want to check out.

By the way, the restaurant walls are bright yellow so add 100 points for them :D

After we ate there, we walked around the Chinatown Bazaar and found another Joy Yee's! I guess they are doing so well that they opened a Joy Yee's Plus.

I didn't get a chance to eat there, but it looks like a sushi place from the displays.

So, Joy Yee and Joy Yee Plus are located in the newer section of Chinatown, around Cermak and Wentworth, 1 block away from the Red Line train station. Joy Yee is located very close to where the 12 zodiac statues are. Right next to Joy Yee's, there's Kan Kee which has awesome food too. Service and decor is not as cool as Joy Yee's but I like their food a lot more.

Joy Yee Plus is closer to the Walgreen side of the shopping center. There's also a really good bakery on that side called St. Anna's. That's where I like to get my BBQ pork buns, mini egg tarts and all other yummy breads and cakes.

Ooo yeah, Joy Yee is also in Evanston, on Halsted around UIC and in Naperville. I love how it's breaking out of Chinatown!

1 comment:

pxyjk said...

You have such high standards for a first date. I'm sure posting this info now will reap much rewards for you later down the road....

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