If Tony Hu claims to have Chicago's first restaurant dedicated to authentic Hunan-style cooking, you'd better believe him. Hu, who has more or less dominated the Chinatown dining scene with his four current restaurants—Lao Sze Chuan, Lao Beijing, Lao You Ju and Lao Shanghai—has just opened Lao Hunan.
The restaurant quietly opened last month and is still undergoing internal design changes. However, the menu features dishes well known throughout China's Hunan province, including beef tripe with preserved chili; Chairman Mao's favorite pork belly; Hunan pork stomach; spicy frog in hot wok; spicy crab Hunan style; famous Hunan chili in black bean sauce; bok choy with Thousand Year eggs and more. The dishes showcase the flavors and spices of the region with many dishes being fiery hot. And, in a nod to Mao, the restaurant's logo features the former leader's silhouette with a tag line "Serving People." Coincidentally, that's what Hu does best.
While many new Chinatown restaurants have opened in Chinatown Square just north of Archer Avenue, Hu opened Lao Hunan on Wentworth south of Archer in the "older" section of Chinatown. Early reports on LTH Forum and Yelp show favorable reviews. Want to make your own decision? Peep the menu below.