Noodle With This: 4 Chicago Spots For Asian-Style Brunch

Need something to look forward to on Sundays? If pancakes are no longer doing the trick, head to one of these spots for a traditional Asian or Asian-inspired weekend brunch. As it turns out, yuzu mimosas and fresh ramen noodles taste pretty dang good before noon.
Slurping Turtle
Guests at Slurping Turtle are encouraged to do what the cute restaurant mascot does: slurp away! (There’s even a gallery of “slurp shots” on the website.) There’s no better time to suck up noodles than on Sundays, when the Bento Brunch takes place from 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Warm, cozy noodle concoctions include the Shoyu Wonton Ramen ($14), which combines homemade ramen noodles with Tokyo-style soy broth, grilled chicken, chicken wontons, and marinated egg. As for those bento boxes, fill them with tapas of your choosing. Options range from sweet potato tempura to silken tofu with poached eggs.
Slurping Turtle, 116 West Hubbard Street (at North LaSalle Street); 312-464-0466.
In Avondale, Yusho is one of Chi-town’s hottest spots for Asian fare — literally. The grill is always going strong at this bright, cheery restaurant, which churns out yakitori-style fare including chicken drummies with red-miso sauce. The “Sunday Noodles” special, held weekly from noon to 8 p.m., offers noodles, desserts, and a beverage for $20 a head. Our picks? Start with the “Logan Poser Ramen,” which has a name that makes us giggle and tastes delicious, with its blend of crispy pig’s tail, hen egg, nori, and cucumber. Desserts include soft-serve ice cream in inventive flavors like Thai basil and tamarind. And as for that beverage, you didn’t think we meant orange juice, did you? There are house-made sodas and an always-changing selection of kegged cocktails.
Yusho, 2853 North Kedzie Avenue (at West George Street); 773-904-8558.
Maybe it’s the sun-and-sand-inspired hues or the fact that chef Carol Wallack is a former surfer, but there’s something perfectly beach-y about Sola. The Lakeview spot is an awesome pick for summer brunches, and the menu — which has American fare with Hawaiian and Asian influence — has tons of tempting dishes. Try the Bimbap ($12), made with pork belly, egg, red rice, spinach, and kimchi. And if you like a little dash of spice with your morning booze, try the Wasabi Bloody Mary ($12), which comes stuffed with shrimp and pickled asparagus. Brunch is served every Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Sola, 3868 North Lincoln Avenue (at West Byron Street); 773-327-3868.
Sunda New Asian
Okay, so tempura-fried French toast may be a little more American than Asian, but we’ll take it — with extra caramel-glazed bananas, please. Along with that offensively delicious toast, Sunda’s brunch has dim sum, Thai-style omelets, sushi, and banh mi sandwiches. But if you know us at all, you’ll know our favorite aspect of this weekend feast is the Asian-inspired Mimosa Kits ($55). You get a bottle of bubbly, fresh mint, seasonal fruits, and fresh juices in flavors like lychee, yuzu, passion fruit, or strawberry. Brunch is offered from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturdays and from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sundays.
Sunda, 110 West Illinois Street (between North Clark Street and North LaSalle Street); 312-644-0500.
Photo: Courtesy of Slurping Turtle

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