820 W Randolph St, Chicago, IL | Directions 6060741.884600 -87.648201
Service is great but the food is not – After reading the good reviews we decided to give this place a try but the food was pretty bad and the chef is terrible. We ordered the shrimp curry which was ok and the prix fix. We choose the noodle entree for the prix fix which was supposed to be a shrimp with noodle in pesto sauce. It was so spicy I had tears in my eyes and the dish wasn't supposed to be spicy. Our server took care of us and was amazing. Could have been a mistake. the chef was informed and looked more defensive then sympathetic. What we also noticed was that the chef didn't cook at all just was there to sign off on the dishes as they left the kitchen. Realized that a lot of chefs do this but you'd think she would at least be more involved. We also saw the dishes other tables ordered and the most shocking thing was the greenbeans the ends were not peeled off which I think is cooking 101.
Great food and Great ambience – Red light is an excellent restaurant with wonderful service and cuisine. I have been there several times, and it has been an extraordinary experience every time. It may be a bit pricey, but it is well worth it. If you want to try them out on a budget try to go in the afternoon during the week when they feature several lunch specials. My must haves from Red light are the sweet potato fries with dipping sauce appetizer, and the chocolate bag desert..
Fun, spicy pan-Asian cuisine stars at this sexy Randolph Street restaurant. – The Scene
Like a surreal Asian circus: Glowing red stalactites hang from the ceiling, giant ferns loom over tables, and there's wrought iron everywhere--on railings, chairs, even the curvy windows. A trendy crowd piles up at the bar waiting for a table in the bi-level space, where a bright open kitchen buzzes and a funky staff delivers smart service.
Spice freaks will love the adventurous pan-Asian menu, which boasts plenty of plates that turn up the heat in a delicious way. Seared ahi tuna gets things started with potent wasabi sauce; noodle salad kissed with spicy peanut sauce is ringed with cool fresh cucumber slices. More delicate palates can opt for pad thai or black tie sesame shrimp with pineapple relish. The most impressive plate is the huge (two pounds-plus), crisp Shanghai-style whole catfish, filleted at table by your server and enough for two people. For dessert, look into Chef Jackie Shen's specialty, a chocolate bag filled with white chocolate mousse.
"If you're looking for ambiance this place is a must--and as the name implies, there are red lights everywhere." (Machiave11i, Citysearch user)
"If you have the cash, Red Light offers up fantastic food, attentive service and an unpretentious, inviting atmosphere." (jmprimus, Citysearch user)
"For a superb meal, order the Chef's tasting. You will literally get 10 courses of food, each of which are out of this world." (diane02, Citysearch user)
"Everything is just a bit more expensive than it should be...and portion sizes are not consistent." (Diner44, Citysearch user)
"It was very expensive and the flavors were pretty bland and flat tasting." (prettyhot, Citysearch user)
"The service was short and a bit rude." (bdjk, Citysearch user)
Almost Recommended – We had dinner at Red Light Saturday night. The service was good and the atmosphere was great. We were seated promptly and the service was timed in a comfortable manner. What makes Red Light miss a 4 or 5 star rating is primarily price. Everything is just a bit more expensive than it should be. Further, while the menu is very interesting, the print is way too small for such a dark atmosphere. Portion sizes are not consistent. We ordered 2 appetizers both of which were small. One of our main courses was average and the other was huge. We ordered a side of green beans and were stunned! There were enough green beans for a table of 6 or more people. (It would have been nice if our server had mentioned the massive amount of green beans when we ordered.) We had a nice evening and enjoyed the food. The food was very good. While we might return to Red Light in the future, it won't be often or soon. For the same price we have had better dining experiences.
Recommend the Food n service once you are seated! – This place serves the best pan-Asian food in Chicago.They have a good number of vegetarian options (I love the eggplant dumplings.)The atmosphere is great,our waitress was very warm and friendly .Its quite relaxed,no need to dress up.Though everything was marvelous once we sat down,things weren't quite nice until that point.
The Valet service is 'Atrocious' .It was pathetic and the guys were pompous,if you dont drive a BMW ,they dont look at you.We waited for ever and ever and had to scream to get noticed. The guy asked us if we are ok to him parking in front and giving us the keys (for $10),parked our car came in and threw the keys on our table.It kind of spoilt the start for us,that and being seated next to the front door on a chillly night.I know someone has to sit there,but still...
So...'d def go back (will take a cab this time) without expecting anything until iam at my table.
Great ambiance, friendly staff, prompt service...the works! – I've never been to a Pan-Asian restaurant before but I placed an 8:30pm reservation at Red Light (on a Tuesday) after glossing over the reviews.
My date and I were instantly seated at a small, intimate table near the door. If you're looking for ambiance this place is a must-- all the chairs, lighting fixtures, etc. have a curved serpentine bend to them and as the name implies, there are red lights EVERYWHERE which coexist along with huge potted plants (fake? I'm not sure...) and large busts of Buddha (I think...). If you need to freshen up or use the restrooms, the individual "water closets" are kind of interesting as well.
Our waitress (and the other server guy) were very attentive, constantly checking up and refilling our water glasses (or dusting crumbs off the table) but not often enough that I would consider it an annoyance. Everything was spot-on, the food was great, I had hanger steak with wasabi butter and polished it off with a jaded dragon green tea martini and a chocolate mousse cake for dessert.
I have two marginal complaints. The vegetarian spring rolls (an appetizer) I had a hard time consuming (although my date enjoyed them)--I thought they were very bland (however in Red Light's defense, I never eat vegetarian food...)
Secondly, sitting near the door we were constantly freezing (I'm not sure if this is because the front door is revolving or not...) but it does get a little drafty...dress warm.
Overall I would consider this a triumph. We even stayed a half hour after closing and the staff was incredibly chatty and informative--they didn't seem intent on booting us out the door.
Two thumbs up!
Great food...vegetarian menu – I did not like Opera so I wasn?t expecting very much (they are owned by the same people). But the food was great!!!! They have a large array of things to choose from. I?m a vegetarian and was pleased to see a vegetarian menu and the food was really great?The staff is a little strange?our waiter seemed like he wanted to care but at the end of the day he just didn?t he was just very fake and plastic. If you make reservation don?t expect them to keep it, I made my RSVP for 8:30 we did not get seated until close to 9:00?why bother making reservation if we had to wait anyway? If you are going for food say yes to Red Light if you are looking for good service you would get better service at McDonalds (sad but true).
Asian fusion not worth the price – I thought the restaurant was really cool inside, but I was there for a great culinary experience. Unfortunately, it didn't live up to my expectations. It was very expensive and the flavors werepretty bland, and flat tasting. The scallops were cooked perfectly, but everything else was lackluster. I went here once, and wouldn't return. I go to Argyle St. for authentic Vietnamese,.
Interesting Menu and Super Friendly Staff – When I first got there I felt like a celebrity! My boyfriend and I were a little rattled at the menu, but the staff was amazing and walked us through everything we needed to know. Trust me, if they recommend something, it is because it is EXCELLENT!
Exceptional cuisine – Went to Red Light Friday night with some friends and we're all still raving about this place. We had the Chef's tasting, which included about 8 courses of the Chef's choice shared around the table. At $70 per person, it's a bit pricey, but definitely worth it. My only complaint is that the food was so good, that I completely overate! We started with the first course of a very tender and flavorful seared ahi tuna with a sweet soy and wasabi sauce, followed by steamed dumplings, and then a course of different rolls. The mango lobster roll was awesome! Just when we were starting to get full, the shrimp course came - complete with traditional pad thai and black tie sesame shrimp. The next course included the Peking Duck with orange ginger cranberry sauce. This dish was incredible and I'm not usually a huge fan of duck. It was actually very lean and the orange ginger cranberry sauce was the perfect compliment. I honestly thought that I could not eat anymore, but then came the 3 pound crispy Shanghai whole catfish, the stir-fry beef tenderloin and the wrinkled green beans. All entrees were exceptional, and I am now a big fan of the wrinkled green beans with roasted garlic and soy caramel. Last - but certainly not least was the dessert course of Jackie's chocolate bag with white chocolate mousse, coconut banana cream pie and a berry tart with lavendar ice cream. The perfect ending to a wonderful evening.
The staff is very friendly and Executive chef Jackie Shen even brought out some of our dishes to explain where they were from and how it was prepared. The atmosphere is fun and exotic. Great for a party or a romantic evening out. I recommend making reservations, especially on the weekends, as it can get pretty crowded.
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