Tamarind - Chicago
Tamarind - Chicago

Tamarind - Chicago

  • Dining Style: Casual Dining
  • Website: http://www.tamarindsushi.com/
  • Phone: (312) 379-0970
  • Hours of Operation:


    Lunch & Dinner:
    Monday - Sunday: 11:00am - 11:00pm
  • Payment Options: AMEX,Discover,MasterCard,Visa
  • Cuisine: Sushi, Fusion / Eclectic, Asian
  • Dress Code: Casual Dress
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Bar/Lounge, Beer, Delivery, Full Bar, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Takeout, Wheelchair Access

Getting there

  • Cross Street: Between Balbo Ave & Harrison St
  • Public Transit: Harrison (Red Line)
    Harold Washington Library (Brown Line, Orange Line, Pink Line, Purple Line)
    Jackson-Red (Red Line)
  • Parking: Street Parking
A word from Tamarind - Chicago
Since 1989, the Ko family has been in the restaurant business, including such sites as Charming Wok and Charming Cuisine.

This newest incarnation is hip, and slightly Swank, in the up-and-coming South Loop neighborhood. Our Comfortable, casual interior is warm and welcoming.

The eclectic Asian cuisine is a fusion of Japanese/Thai/Chinese/Vietnemese, offering specialty original dishes like Asian Pizza.

Hailed as one of the best Asian restaurants in a city known for its cuisine, locals love us and have us on speed dial!

Enjoy!
Continued
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Tamarind - Chicago reviews from OpenTable diners
10 reviews since July 29, 2014
Overall Rating3.3
  • Food3.3
    Service2.9
  • Ambiance3.2
    Noise LevelModerate
71% of reviewers would recommend this restaurant to a friend.
neighborhood gem (4)good for groups (3)great for lunch (2)great for outdoor dining (1)kid-friendly (1)fit for foodies (1)Show More
  • Good food in a neighborhood with few choices.
    OpenTable Diner Since 2007
    Dined on 11/22/2014
    Sushi was good and fresh. Service was friendly and efficient. We had a large group and they were very flexible and made our evening enjoyable. There are not many quality choices in this area, so Tamarind is a welcome spot!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • disappointing
    luv2VIP
    Dined on 11/22/2014
    Only 1 of 5 was happy with their meal. My honey walnuts with tofu was drenched in kewpie mayo instead of a propper white sauce, friend's tempura tasted odd - bad oil, lunch hour rush was apparently under-staffed.
    Special Features:
    great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Not bad
    ElNaught5
    Dined on 11/19/2014
    The food was good. But the service was overwhelmed that night so the service was not so great. I think it was due to the Auditorium performance that night that overextended their normal staffing.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Horrible Service
    OpenTable Diner Since 2008
    Dined on 11/19/2014
    The service was terrible. Restaurant was not staffed properly for the number of diners. The server did not have a good command of the English language so communication was difficult. We had to ask about our order multiple times as well as getting our beverages. The food was ok but we were so rushed to eat so we wouldn't miss our show that we really didn't enjoy it.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Good Spot for Quick Weekday Meal
    gmk3VIP
    Dined on 10/24/2014
    As the title states, Tamarind would be good for take out or a quick meal if you live in the neighborhood. The decor/seating is not fancy and the food was good, but not overly flavorful.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Ratings-Only Reviews
    Based on 5 ratings-only reviews submitted since July 29, 2014
    • Overall Rating3.6
    • Food3.6
    • Ambiance3.4
    • Service3.2
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • The following 60 reviews are from the Tamarind - Chicago reviews archive.
  • WORST service EVER
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 3/28/2014
    After 20 minutes of sitting at our table with no waitress I got up and approached someone. I was told a waitress would be right over. After another several minutes a woman came to take our drink order and appetizers. After 40 minutes..the woman came back and said they didn't have some of the ingredients (ginger!?) to make a few of our cocktails...did we want to just cancel the order? she asked. I said, "No...we'll order different ones but given how long this has taken...we won't be paying for them." She said, "oh no of course not." The dishes came out one by one...no one was able to actually eat together.. THEN we asked for the checks. Lo and behold, the drinks were on the bill.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Delicious Pan Asian
    Nivel2041
    Dined on 3/9/2014
    Happy to recommend this restaurant which is especially convenient either before or after attending an event at the Auditorium Theater. Food delicious, something for everyone and dishes can be shared or not.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Good food
    OpenTable Diner Since 2008
    Dined on 3/6/2014
    The food is good but priced on the high side. The lunch menu is a lot better deal.
    Special Features:
    great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Sit down and shut up
    OpenTable Diner Since 2008
    Dined on 3/1/2014
    I think the people in front of us without a reservation got our table because when they got to us we only had the option of sitting on the stools at the sushi bar (ugh). We were seated with food menus, water, setups, and no drink menus. The seats were terrible, too -- unless you were weaing pleather, you would slide right off of them, and they had no where to hang your purse or coat, and no back. Hard as a rock. We proceeded to sit there for twenty minutes as various staff ran by shouting things at one another, and as the sushi guys avoided eye contact. With 8:00 tickets at the Auditorium Theatre, we thought it best to bail. Went across the street to Thai Spoon, where we were served a delicious cocktail and dinner immediately..
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Identity crisis there
    TheaterFanaticVIP
    Dined on 3/1/2014
    This restaurant tries to be Chinese, Thai and Japanese (I have to look, maybe they have some Vietnamese, Cambodian and Korean thrown in). I am pretty sure they are Chinese ... funny seeing three Chinese men lined up as sushi chefs (and don't eat the sushi). I will say I could have eaten their eggplant all night long, so that was a good call ... the Thai curry was decent, but that is something that sits in a pot all day and is scooped to order. I am not sure I will go back as there are other restaurants in the area worth exploring before I resort to this one again. Unless I am in an eggplant mood...
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Close to Auditorium Theater
    MaryNell
    Dined on 2/22/2014
    Great cocktails and long & tasty menu. Very convenient for performances at the Auditorium
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Not for sushi lovers
    TheaterFanaticVIP
    Dined on 2/21/2014
    For sushi, stick with a good Japanese restaurant, not Chinese-owned. The sushi was dry and of questionable age. Our main course was plopped down before we were done with the starter & the waitress could not push our appetizer plates out from under us fast enough. Seemed like she wanted to sell the table at least two more times. Well, we did not have to worry about our sushi getting cold while we finished our appetizers. I think the sushi was prepared long before and just placed on plates as ordered -- not prepared to order. I was embarrassed for my guests who were polite. Had I no guests, I'd have turned the sushi in and ordered cooked food (but would have been worried as to what they might have done to retaliate).
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Barely edible; service a nightmare
    BucktownBobVIP
    Dined on 2/15/2014
    The title of the review says it all. The food was barely edible: the beef in the dishes was fat, chewy blobs. The brown rice soup was nothing more than commercial chicken broth with some rice and leftover vegetables. Egg rolls were an oily mess and tasted like they came from a vendor. Service? Forget it. In a nearly empty restaurant, we were seated next to the drafty door on a cold winter day. The waitress came within 30 seconds to take our food orders; we asked for a little more time, but it was 15 minutes before we saw her again. Dishes came out of the kitchen as they were done, meaning each guest at our table was served 5-10 minutes apart. Horrible. I will never return to this restaurant.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Dining near the Auditorium Theater
    chitowngalVIP
    Dined on 2/12/2014
    Tamarind is a short walk to the Auditorium. The atmosphere was very pleasant. The food was quite good, and they have a wide variety of Asian cuisines. Service was a bit slow, but they were able to get us out with plenty of time to get to the show. The restaurant was busy with many different age groups and ethnicities in attendance. I would definitely return when I am downtown.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Mediocre food at a reasonable price
    dineout
    Dined on 1/31/2014
    Great for a quick meal before a show in the area - the food is nothing exceptional. Large portions to fill you up. Extensive list of cocktails but none are very good (remember them being excellent a few years ago).
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Outstanding Food
    Maddie
    Dined on 12/10/2013
    Came to Chicago for the first time. I was looking for good chinese food and googled it and found Tamarind on the internet. We had gone to Soldier field earlier to take some pictures before lunch. The location of the restaurant was nearby and it was easy to find. The menu had a diversity of other dishes beside chinese. I was so happy they also had Thai, Japanese, Korean and Vietnamese on the menu. Food was amazing. Portions were huge and i enjoyed every thing my husband and i ordered. i will definitely come back to this restaurant and recommend this to my family and friends when they visit chicago.
    Special Features:
    great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great Food
    OpenTable Diner Since 2007VIP
    Dined on 11/22/2013
    I have been going to Tamarind since 2006 or so when I lived in the South Loop. My son and I recently went to lunch here (I have not been in a couple of years) and when I got to the restaurant, it was not busy. I overheard a waiter say that there was a convention in town and they were going to get very busy so I was glad I was there before the crowd. Before they got busy, my waitress was just not good. I had to flag her down every time which was extremely frustrating. Once the crowd came in, I just wanted a box for food and my check and after nearly 30 minutes, finally got it. The food here is great. This was the first time I have ever been here and had poor service. I would still go back again, but maybe for carry out.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, neighborhood gem, great for lunch, kid-friendly
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Busy but hospitable
    islander
    Dined on 11/21/2013
    The restaurant was very busy and we had to wait even 45 minutes with a baby despite ha ing a reservation but the food was good and the prices were reasonable, far superior to other eateries in the South Loop area.
    Special Features:
    good for groups
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great menu, price and food.
    fivestarappetite
    Dined on 11/20/2013
    Great menu, price and food. If there is one thing that would make this place stand out more is improving there service. It took to long to get a table, even with reservation and it took long for someone to take your order. Other than that the food is good, the sushi is amazing and priced well. I would recommend this place only to people that are not in a rush and has patience.
    Special Features:
    late-night find, neighborhood gem, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • We were sat at our reservation
    Mmm123
    Dined on 11/2/2013
    We were sat at our reservation time, however, our order was not taken for an hour. Our food arrived before our drinks. The food was good the organization was just not there. There was no apology for the bad service to try to make things right.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • This restaurant was not prepared
    OpenTable Diner Since 2007
    Dined on 11/2/2013
    This restaurant was not prepared for a large crowd prior to a show at the Auditorium Theatre which I find very confusing as they are only one of a few restaurants around the area. How can you not be prepared? I'm sure this happens every weekend. Took a half an hour for someone to show up at our table, even after we asked. Food was not ready before we had to leave and two people ordered sushi. I will not be returning to this restaurant nor recommending it to anyone.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Good Energy & Food - Fair service
    Jen247VIP
    Dined on 11/2/2013
    We had tickets to a show and arrived 2 hours ahead - our server just had too many tables and was doubling as bartender. We ordered a sushi appetizer and it was the last thing to arrive after our entrees. We had hoped that she forgot about it and tried to flag her down the cancel without success. Will avoid weekends at Tamarind. Took the hosts more than 5 minutes to find our reservation which was weird. Have had much better visits during the week. Really like variety on menu and creative cocktails.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Apre ballet
    KHMcK
    Dined on 10/26/2013
    We always love the food an ambiance here. Stunning drinks, extensive menu makes it hard to choose
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Try It
    MrsG
    Dined on 9/29/2013
    We went for brunch on a sunday. It was quiet and we were seated immediately. We parked out front and had to pay the meter. It was not very crowded so we received everything in a matter of minutes after it was ordered. Super fast service. They infuse cucumber and lemon in their water automatically which caught me off guard when I tasted it but was refreshing once I knew why the water tasted so weird. Everything on the menu is very affordable. Wine was delicious.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, neighborhood gem, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • service
    MandK
    Dined on 9/28/2013
    The menu looked amazing but I didn't get a chance to try due to the poor service. I was seated right away and given water. Nobody greeted our table or took a drink order as we sat there for 30 minutes. They looked under staffed and many tables seemed to be waiting for food or a waiter. Dissapointing.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • big things come in small packages
    tere
    Dined on 9/28/2013
    At first sight, Tamarind looks like a little neighborhood take out Thai restaurant that you'd find anywhere in the city. Once inside I.realized it was so much more. My experience at Tamarind was wonderful. The service and food were excellent. The wine and cocktail menu was surprisingly varied. We loved the ginger martini and the berry mojito. The food was delicious. That will definitely be my spot for dinner and drinks the next time I'm in the area.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Really enjoy this restaurant.
    ChiTownSherri
    Dined on 9/25/2013
    Really enjoy this restaurant. Food is always great, service is quick and friendly. Have gone here for lunch about 5 times and it's a great place in the South Loop.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, great for lunch, kid-friendly
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Decent food, poor service
    JeffVIP
    Dined on 9/21/2013
    Maybe an off night, but nowhere near the type of service one would expect. Had heard good things from friends who frequent the restaurant for lunch. Perhaps they have that down, but they did not have their "A" game for the dinner crowd. The food was OK, although my friend did not enjoy the Pad See Ew (too doughy). Not sure I would try this place again.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Excellent food
    Joyfulfrog
    Dined on 7/2/2013
    Had the moo shu and various sushi. Everything was well prepared and delicious.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Used to be a Favorite
    thebbj
    Dined on 6/29/2013
    Tamarind used to be a favorite of mine, especially when dining with people who want a variety to choose from. However, the last two times I have dined there the food was bland, service was poor, and overall mood of the room off. The service has been rude, and they rushed us out both times. Appetizers came out AFTER my entree came, which was before anyone else's entree. Our second appetizer (we ordered two, came out last). I was away from the table and my friends said they had to keep the wait staff from clearing my plate with half a maki roll still on it. Finally, after all that, we wanted dessert however they handed us the check without asking if we wanted any. Needless to say, we spent that money elsewhere.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • We had reservations to eat
    Jeff
    Dined on 4/13/2013
    We had reservations to eat before a show at the Auditorium. Seated promptly by a polite host, but then the experience went downhill. Our waitress barely spoke English, which in itself is OK, but she couldn't even answer our simple questions about the menu, offered no suggestions for first-time customers, and barely checked on us through the meal. One of us had to ask four times for a second glass of wine. The steamed Pot Stickers and Spring Rolls were both mediocre, with unremarkable flavor and texture. My Pad Thai was overcooked, probably the poorest version I've had in a restaurant, and I've ordered it many times in many places. I'm surprised at the good reviews online, we looked forward to this dinner and were quite disappointed.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • pleasant place, extensive
    MamaTemboVIP
    Dined on 3/27/2013
    pleasant place, extensive menu. Sushi was good but not nearly as good as some other places (Ringo, Nori, etc) Good location for attending Auditorium Theater events tho
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Tuna carpaccio trio probably
    GBomer
    Dined on 3/22/2013
    Tuna carpaccio trio probably the most amazing appetizer I have had in a LONG time. It came topped with jalapenos which, love them as I do, weren't required because the fish tasted so good. I like the interesting menu offering Chinese, Thai, Indian and other Asian cuisines.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Best Asian Cuisine in Chicago
    GiGi
    Dined on 3/17/2013
    Tamarind is a hidden diamond. We had tickets to see La Boheme at the DePaul University Theatre just around the corner from the restaurant. I made reservations on-line and when we arrived we were greeted by our name and were seated in the back in a cozy open booth. The server, Niki is a gem. One of the best. The sushi was fantastic. The peartini was wonderful and the entrees were delicious. We parked on the street, right in front of the restaurant.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, kid-friendly, neighborhood gem, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Service was good and quick
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 3/12/2013
    Service was good and quick perfect for a lunch break
    Special Features:
    great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Heve been to other TA,around
    TomMVIP
    Dined on 3/4/2013
    Heve been to other TA,around restaurants and quality was certainly equal...the ambiance was not upmtomthenothers however ...
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Normal sushi. Nothing special
    OpenTable Diner Since 2007
    Dined on 3/2/2013
    Normal sushi. Nothing special or imaginative. Fresh seafood.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Good Variety of Asian Cuisine
    OpenTable Diner Since 2012
    Dined on 2/23/2013
    Went here before seeing a performance at the Auditorium, just a short walk away. Tamarind offers a good variety of different types of asian food at reasonable prices. We tried 3 different maki's and the seafood noodle soup, all were very good.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • The freshest ingredients paired
    OpenTable Diner Since 2010VIP
    Dined on 2/3/2013
    The freshest ingredients paired with exceptional sauces, broths all cooked to perfection. Not overcooked, but crisp, delicious and served steaming. Best Thai food outside of Bangkok! Hot Saka was a treat, too!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Great friendly service, good
    OpenTable Diner Since 2012
    Dined on 1/26/2013
    Great friendly service, good atmosphere, tasty food, full menu, decent prices. My kind of place.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate