Thursday, April 21, 2011

Poor Choice For Fast Food

Does it look good? Yes, but so does Jet Li! Similarity...
their both an Americanized memento of Chinese culture
and they both can kill you!
Image courtesy of Midtown Lunch Guide to all you can eat Chinese food

Upon bringing up this article to my fellow Mass Mediaites, I was unsurprised to encounter looks of disgust and various phrases like “why would you choose that one!” when I brought up Lee Chen’s. Lee Chen’s is, by the way, a combo Mexican Chinese restaurant that delivers well into the night. For my part, I have only had Lee Chen’s Chinese food, so my opinion is limited.

My workmates’ reactions disheartened me. So, I went home and did some research – is Lee Chen’s really the place I’m thinking of? A reliable establishment with great, cheap Chinese food? Do I really have such poor taste?

Evidently, I do. 

If you’re looking for salad, go somewhere else. If you’re watching what you eat, avert your eyes. If you have a heart condition, do not order from Lee Chen’s. 

Get ready, folks; get some napkins and be prepared to dab, Lee Chen’s is a glorious grease-fest of golden-brown, deep-fried, artery-polluting tastiness. 

Apparently, I’m not the only one who enjoys the gustatory pleasures of Lee Chen’s. John Hunt, a close friend of mine and a food aficionado (he once ate 2.5 burritos in one night and didn’t mind), has something to say. “I love the variety that Lee Chen’s offers. There aren’t that many places around that mix Chinese and Mexican and is still edible.”

What’s John’s favorite Lee Chen’s dish? “My favorite Lee Chen’s dish is a burrito with only chicken, cheese, and sour cream and, if I’m feeling feisty, I get some nachos with chicken and cheese on them as well.” Some deep, psychological architecture has discouraged me from ordering Mexican food. But, a description like John’s makes me consider breaking my thoughtless habit in order to embrace the fabled delivery-burrito.

Regarding delivery time, I heard two responses when I asked about the speed of Lee Chen’s delivery service. 

“Faster than a speeding burrito bullet,” John answered. 

Anonymous source: “faster than a speedy Speedy-Gonzalez.” 

John also had a comment about the prices. “Their prices are very reasonable,” adding, “there’s just nothing like them anymore.” 

Tyler O’Brien (one of my beautiful roommates) added her input. “I really love Lee Chen’s because it’s quick and I really like their brown rice. But they gave me a bad chicken finger one time.”

One time, out of a dozen or so orders – that’s consistently high-quality cooking!

So, what is the allure of this place that puts it above all other combo Mexican-Chinese delivery places in the South Boston area? It’s truly a mystery. 

I did some research, however, to see if there was a secret behind their success (other than some quality crab rangoon). Apparently, Lee Chen’s does have a secret, or at least something its owners wouldn’t want to become public. Of the eleven inspections done on Lee Chen’s since 2008, the restaurant has had “violations requiring reinspection” twice this year and failed on three other instances. 

Some quick calculations reveal that Lee Chen’s has only passed inspection 45 percent of the time. That’s almost 50 percent!

So, in conclusion, based on my own experiences, the experiences of some of my friends, and the information provided by the world wide wed, I think I should start rethinking what food to get to satisfy my midnight cravings. Yes, they deliver until midnight.

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