A Taste of Culture in Chicago’s Chinatown

Have you visited Chinatown yet?  You should!

Chinatown is one of those neighborhoods that allows you to feel transported; you can pretend you are in a different country and not just a different neighborhood.  Stepping off the Chicago Red Line you will find yourself greeted by the famous “Nine-Dragon Wall “– nine is a lucky number in China.  There are three of these famous, elaborate murals in China and only one in the United States.  Head up to Wentworth Street, and a left will take you into Old China Town, introduced by the dramatic “Dragon Gate” and filled with shops and restaurants.  A right will take you towards New China Town’s Zodiac square where you can use your birth year to identify under which animal in the Chinese Zodiac you were born.  The square is picturesque and full of shops and restaurants. 

An English speaker will not find themselves at a loss visiting Chinatown because almost everything is printed in both English and Chinese.  But, the sheer quantity of options, many unfamiliar, can be overwhelming.  The Collaborative for Multilingual Writing and Research led one of our quarterly Walk and Talks to Chinatown this past Monday, April 23rd.  Four native Chinese students helped us plan and lead the event, and it was fantastic!  They also provided us with a list of recommendations to some of their favorite restaurants; if you don’t know where to start, consider visiting one of these restaurants and then shopping around: LAO SZE CHUAN (Si Chuan Cuisine, Spicy) – Located in Zodiac Square; NEW SHUI WAH (Cantonese Cuisine) – Located in Zodiac Square; TRIPLE CROWN RESTAURANT (Cantonese Cuisine) – Located at Wentworth & Cermak; HING KEE (Northwestern Style Cuisine) – Located in Zodiac Square. The Sweet Station is a great place to stop for smoothies, bakery items, and more Cantonese cuisine.

China Town is located off the Red Line at the Cermak/Chinatown stop, and it’s worth the trip!

If you’d like to join the CMWR next time we lead a Walk and Talk to an interesting part of Chicago, just send us an email requesting info at cmwr@depaul.edu.  Below is a picture from our Chinatown adventure.  Join us next time!