Best Asian restaurants on campus
May 25, 2016
The University of Illinois at Urbana- Champaign may be in the middle of cornfields, hours away from any major city, but that doesn’t mean that there isn’t unique food to be found. As an Asian-American student, I tend to gravitate towards the Asian restaurants on campus. Here are some good places on campus:
Sakanaya is known for their pricey dishes, but it’s definitely worth it. Their ramen comes to about $12 a bowl, but it’s more than enough to fill you up while being delicious at the same time.
Recommendation: Willis Tower, Tonkatsu Ramen
Location: 403 E Green St, Champaign, IL 61820
This new Korean-Mexican place just opened in March, immediately dazzling the Chambana community with fusion foods that look good and taste even better. Go for the food and stay for the ambiance.
Recommendation: Gogi bowl with Kalbi Beef and fried rice
Location: 608 S 6th St, Champaign, IL 61820
Pho Cafe and Thai Kitchen
Pho doesn’t compare to some places in Chicago, but it’s the best you’ll find on campus. Their noodle soup dish is the perfect cure for a night out, and as an added bonus, the owners are super sweet. Sweet as the hoisin sauce they serve on the side.
Recommendation: Pho with Beef
Location: 611 E Green St, Champaign, IL 61820
“BAP BAP BAP” is what I say when I walk in the door here. Literally translated, that means “rice rice rice” and that is what this place does best. When you’re craving some solid Korean food, hit up this spot. Chicken soup for the Korean Seoul.
Location: 700 S Gregory St, Urbana, IL 61801
Golden Harbor (Edge of Campus)
If you have to read this recommendation to convince you to go to Golden Harbor, you’re living your life wrong for not having been to this shining paragon of all that is beautiful in the world. This place is the peak of Olympus. Food of the gods. Go like their Facebook page; you won’t be disappointed. Also the menu is like 10,000 items long, no joke.
Recommendation: There are too many good dishes, but their Fried Tofu should always be ordered.
Location: 505 S Neil St, Champaign, IL 61820
Whether you call it milk tea, bubble tea, or PMT (pearl milk tea), this drink is a staple in Chinese culture. Milk tea is equivalent to coffee in the asian world, and in my opinion, Asian desserts are known for being light and not too sweet, which applies to their drinks as well.
What time is it? Ask a bilingual Chinese-English speaker who is thirsty, and they’ll tell you “Cha time!” Cha, for those uninitiated in the language, is “tea” in Chinese. They’ll be right, though, because it’s always a good time to visit this popular bubble tea chain.
Recommendation: Banana Milk Tea
Location: 512 E Green St, Champaign, IL 61820
Little known, possibly false fact: This bubble tea spot was christened when its owner taste tested the tea and couldn’t help but sing aloud, “laa!!!” This spot is relatively new to the campus bubble tea scene, but it already takes the spotlight. Prime spot. light.
Recommendation: Lavender Milk Tea with Tapioca or Salted Creme Float with Oolong Tea
Location: 601 S 6th St #105, Champaign, IL 61820
This well-known campus spot is the place for your quick self-serve yogurt fix. Do you like Yoplait? Do you like ice? Then you’ll like frozen yogurt. They also offer some Korean staple desserts. Yum.
Recommendation: Put oreos and strawberries on some kind of chocolate yogurt.
Location: 709 S Wright St, Champaign, IL 61820
Tiffany is a junior in FAA.