Centerstage - Chicago's Original City Guide

Virtual L ®

Virtual L Locations Near Ben PaoWhat's near Ben Pao?

in River North or Grand on the Red line

Chicago Dining
By Style
Restaurants A-Z
Dining Guides
User Reviews
Find an error?
Are you the owner?
Tell Us Here

CRUMB and FestFile is Centerstage Chicago's Weekly E-Newsletter.
Enter your email to get
our weekly newsletter:

Ben Pao

View Map52 W. Illinois St., Chicago
Tel: (312) 222-1888
Fax: (312) 222-0925
View Website
Details Find What Else Is Nearby Ben Pao User Reviews

Editorial Review of Ben Pao

If you're torn between the exotic and the familiar, Ben Pao is your happy compromise. Though its Chinese fare is hardly served in an authentic atmosphere (read: all the servers are American and the space is trendily outfitted in red and black), the food remains delicious and the service, amiable.

Take a seat at the circular bar or head deeper into the dining room, where the good-for-groups spot makes true on its reputation, with large tables that accommodate parties digging into the skewered tamarind chicken satay ($4.95).

Dressed up dishes still ring familiar—the ginger asparagus shrimp adds Fresno chilies and shitake mushrooms to the mix, and the tangy sweet & sour chicken comes with mango, pineapple, kiwi and lychees. Our recommendations: The chocolate banana eggrolls served with vanilla ice cream are sensational, as are the Sake Sangria, the Lemon Gingertini and homemade passion fruit juice. Priced low for the area, the average entree costs $10.95-$15.95 and the most expensive entree (black peppered sea scallops) is $19.95.

Diners seeking an eccentric eating event will love Ben Pao's Hot Pot Cafe, which caters to private parties of four to eight. Meals are cooked tableside by the customers; servers provide only the meats, sauces, garnishes and boiling broth in mesh baskets to cook in. The whole she-bang costs $19.95 per person, with a $12 up-charge for a "Ben Pao Wine Tasting." Reservations recommended on the weekends.

Average cost: $10-$20

Centerstage Reviewer: Carly Schwartz

User Reviews

Read other people's reviews and post your own opinion about Ben Pao too!


11:30 a.m.-9:30 p.m. Monday-Thursday; 11:30 a.m.-10:30 p.m. Friday; 5-10:30 p.m. Saturday; 5-9 p.m. Sunday

Directions to Ben Pao

Our directions are included with our maps of Ben Pao
Ben Pao was mentioned in these articles...

Mother's Day in Chicago, 5/7/10
Treat Mom to a meal she deserves at one of these local brunches.

Chinese New Year Celebrations , 2/2/10
Start the Year of the Tiger off right at these Chicago restaurants and bars.

Chinese New Year Celebrations , 2/2/10
Start the Year of the Tiger off right at these Chicago restaurants and bars.

Gold Medal-Worthy Destinations, 8/6/08
These Olympics-inspired deals will have you high-jumping for joy.


chicago, metromix