While Randolph Street and Fulton Market have boomed with restaurants, other West Loop retail strips have populated with dry cleaners and hair salons. Off the restaurant nexus but en route to the United Center, the casual Thai and sushi spot Talay (1222 W. Madison St., 312-733-0812) opened about a month ago. We haven't had a chance to pay a visit—have you?

The 85-seat BYO-for-now is a sister to Park Ridge’s Siam Thai Restaurant, owned by Mike Humpal and his chef wife, Wiparut, who goes by the infrequently female nickname Tim. (The couple also owned Winnetka’s Lemongrass, which they closed to focus on opening Talay.) Mike recommends the red and green curries and basil dishes, such as chicken or duck. But you’ll have to go down the street for your laundry or your haircut.