BellyQ (1400 W. Randolph St., 312-563-1010). Pan-Asian.
★½ (good to very good)
$ ($20–$29 per person for a meal, without tax, tip, or alcohol)
Our bellies already pined for Bill Kim’s (UrbanBelly, Belly Shack) fare, and his warehouse-chic barbecue concept just deepened the desire. Pick your potion from a well-priced roster of shochu-infused craft cocktails, sakes, and Japanese whiskeys. Then, if you like to DIY, roll up your sleeves at a tabletop grill, or relax and let Kim and crew work their magic from the kitchen.
Either way, start with the golf-ball-size crispy tofu, move on to the succulent grilled proteins and tea-smoked duck medallions accompanied by pillowy steamed buns, and finish with the textural delights of the seafood hot pot. Full? Spring for the dreamy soft serve anyway.
Dishes We Liked: crispy tofu ($6), chilled soba noodle salad ($10), spicy lemongrass chicken ($18), seafood hot pot ($14), citrus ice ($6)
New restaurant reviews, updated to reflect critics’ recent visits, appear each month in Chicago magazine, in Dine, as well as on our website. Listed restaurants are rated from one to four stars, where one is good, two is very good, three is excellent, and four is superlative. BellyQ was previously not listed. The new reviews appear in the April issue, on newsstands Thursday.