Red Violet (CLOSED)

Restaurants, Chinese River North
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Red Violet (CLOSED)
Photograph: Martha Williams
Red Violet Cafe

This sprawling split-level space decked out with Chinese curios appears to have the trappings to entice a River North crowd. But on this increasingly competitive stretch of Hubbard, it’s going to take more than kumquat cocktails to lure the masses. Chef Franky Fong is a veteran of Tony Hu’s Chinatown empire, and he executes standards with ease: Crispy salt-and-pepper calamari is a greaseless tangle; tender beef hunks bob in a Szechuan-style hot chili broth; and baby Chinese cabbages soak up the juices of Cantonese-style sautéed shrimp and scallops. But these are Chinatown standards, not exactly the “Modern Chinese” advertised with the moniker and, unfortunately, not likely to entice the scene seekers nearby.

Posted:

Venue name: Red Violet (CLOSED)
Contact:
Address: 121 W Hubbard St
Chicago

Cross street: at LaSalle Dr
Opening hours: Lunch, dinner
Transport: El stop: Brown, Purple (rush hrs) to Merchandise Mart; Red to Grand.
Price: Average main course: $17
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