Food & Drink

China Thrills

Three telltale signs winter is on its way:

1. No more weekly pedis.
2. You take out more than you work out.
3. Grandma heads to Boca.

Take a hint from the older and wiser: The hottest action lies south. Of Wacker Drive, to be precise. An unlikely ‘hood, perhaps, but that’s where you’ll find China Grill, which opens today.

The grandiose scene set by I.M. Pei protégé Jeffrey Beers includes high ceilings, multi-level dining areas, and an Egyptian-limestone floor emblazoned with excerpts from Marco Polo’s diaries. The menu is filled with massive portions of Pan-Asian cuisine like spicy Szechuan beef, tempura sashimi with hot-mustard-champagne sauce, and ginger vegetable dumplings.

If the Chicago eatery proves to be anything like the China Grills in NYC and Miami, expect to compete for tables with Armani-clad junior VPs, celebs (okay, reality-TV vets), big-name playahs — and the wannabes who love them.

In the meantime, join the rest of the flock at the bar.

China Grill, 230 North Michigan Avenue, at Lake Street, in the Hard Rock Hotel (312-334-6700).