“What?” I asked. Renee was staring at me as if she had something to say.
“Just wondering how I let you talk me into these situations.”
We were riding the Red Line down to 95/Dan Ryan to try to catch the Southside Irish Parade. The train was packed with more sketchy characters than usual. I had had a 15 minute conversation with an old man who was advertising his YouTube channel, and now our attention was being turned to a loud argument. A man who was selling chocolate bars was being shrieked at by a man/woman(?) who may have had schizophrenia. Things were getting so heated that Renee and I were hoping to get off the train as soon as possible, but were stopped by the fear of getting involved.
While I hear the Irish Parade went pretty well (save for one arrest on grounds of public urination), Renee and I didn’t leave the train stop. We looked around, turned our butts around, deciding that visiting Chicago’s charming Southside may best be experienced with a male escort, a few ninja stars, and pepperspray.
So we took the Red Line to Chinatown, and ended up in a restaurant which I will highly recommend to you now.
Won Kow is not very far from the Cermak-Chinatown stop. Just steps from the Chinatown arch, it is the oldest restaurant in Chinatown. It opened in 1928 and has been running ever since. I was highly impressed by Won Kow for these reasons:
- Ample sitting room– The restaurant is spacious and beautiful, which is a breath of fresh air here in Chicago.
- Efficient servers– After mere sips from your water glass, they’ll fill it up again. They’re all over the place but get your food out fast.
- Good, cheap food– Order the potstickers. They’re not your typical, flimsy, soggy lumps. These are wrapped in a hearty, breaded shell, packed with pork, and fried to perfection. A plate (~5 pieces) of these could actually constitute a meal. The prices are phenomenally low, especially at lunchtime (11 AM – 2 PM). Won Kow has a rep of having the “Best Fried Rice in Chicago” (and yes, it is pretty good).
- Cheap drinks. I’m talking a variety of mixed drinks under $5! If you’ve got a low budget, you can eat until you’re full and still have enough money to get yourself buzzed.
So overall, attempting experience the Southside Irish Parade was a failure, but we did have a great time enjoying Chinatown, its cheap prices, and some gorgeous, gorgeous Spring weather.
Won Kow Restaurant
2237 S Wentworth Ave