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The Bento Box

Restaurants, Japanese Bucktown
Photograph: Michael Jarecki Bento Box

Time Out says

With just a dozen seats and five main courses, this shoebox of a restaurant seems to traffic in smallness. But slurp rice noodles in a Thai chili-scented broth, or take a bite of the complex curries or juicy bulgogi in one of the namesake bento boxes, and you’ll be hit by big Asian flavors, fresh ingredients (such as Jidori chicken) and the sense that the chef—Rick Spiros—is cooking with some real gusto. Tip: The menu changes daily, and when Spiros says barbecue-pork steamed buns, you better run.



Address: 2246 W Armitage Ave
Cross street: between Oakley Ave and Leavitt St
Transport: El stop: Blue to Western (O'Hare). Bus: 49, 56, 73.
Price: Average main course: $15
Opening hours: Dinner (closed Sun)
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Users say

Average User Rating

5 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:1
  • 4 star:0
  • 3 star:0
  • 2 star:0
  • 1 star:0
1 person listening

Absolutely spectacular!
It is a cozy and intimate restaurant that seats approximately 20 people total; they have different seating times and let you know ahead of time that they appreciate you only utilize a table for up to two hours; which is understandable.

When we went, there were six of us. We each came in with a bottle of wine in tow. PS - extra awesome sauce is that they are BYOB. They were  very accommodating with glasses, corkscrews and an ice bucket. The chef came out to greet us and ask if there were any food allergies or aversions since everything is prepared fresh in the kitchen, they can make alterations if needed. Luckily, we are all game for all of it so we did the five course tasting menu, served family style.

1st Course: eggrolls - I wasn't excited at all for this until I shoved it in my mouth. It was easily the best egg roll I have ever tasted.
2nd Course: green curry mussels - not even exaggerating when I say at least two people at my table drank the remaining sauce out of their bowls
3rd Course: Korean fried chicken - it was served over kimchi mashed potatoes. Crazy good!
4th Course: Pork Laap - what an incredible combination of spice with a subtle hint of sweetness from the pineapple
5th Course: Singapore Noodles - I will say the amount of heat on this dish was a bit much for a few of us at the table, but for the rest of us, it was perfect.

They packed leftovers up in individual containers so we could each bring home a little package of love for later! Service was on point. My one and only complaint is that it is cash only, but eh, no biggie!