Season both sides of lamb chops with salt and pepper. Press thyme into chops. Heat olive oil and butter in a 12-inch skillet. Sear chops for a minute on each side.
Lower the heat and cook, uncovered, for 5 to 10 minutes depending on how well you like your chops done. Turn the chops occasionally while they cook. Remove them to a plate and set aside; discard almost all of the fat. Add garlic, anise seeds, balsamic vinegar, sugar and 2 tablespoons water. Scrape up juices and reduce until syrupy. Off heat, stir in 2 tablespoons butter and season to taste with salt and pepper; spoon over chops.