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The Week In Yelp: Chinese Fever Sweeps Yelp Nation

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From the people who brought you The Week in Craig, one of the all time great uses of the internet, comes The Week in Yelp, wherein Amy Blair takes aim at the ridiculousness that is the world of Yelp. Her intrepid Yelp-surfing, and words, follow:

2008_01_yelp.jpgThis week I've got Chinese food on the brain. Mostly, the Beijing Olympics are to blame (disclosure: I am fully obsessed), but also I live in Chinatown and I had a really disturbing incident last night that I believe should serve as a warning to anyone who plans to visit Chinatown for dinner. So, last night I was walking home from the subway through the excessively (annoyingly) crowded streets of my neighborhood when a woman bumped into me with her shopping bag. Considering it was a small woman carrying something as harmless as a plastic grocery bag, I was shocked by the sharp pain it instantly caused where it brushed against my knee. I looked down, and immediately saw a swollen red cut forming across my leg. My thought process jumped from pain to anger to confusion to the dawn of realization?there was something FUCKING ALIVE (or probably more realistically fucking dying) in that plastic grocery bag. A crab, a lobster, some unidentifiable sea creature with sharp-as-knives claws just reached out and swiped me (pinched me?) as he was being carried to his inevitable doom in a grocery bag by a little old lady (!!). You live in New York long enough and you think you've seen it all, but this was definitely a first. And for that reason, this week I've put together an ode to Chinese food through the eyes of the Yelpers. (A sea creature! Attacked me! On my own damned street).

Yup. Chinese food.

Anywho, first up, a review of San Francisco’s Enjoy Vegetarian Restaurant from someone so funny, they should probably be a comedian. Or, um, not.

i like Enjoy! let's face it, I love meat. but sometimes you just need a nice healthy break. the folks at Enjoy can satisfy this quite nicely. and, if you are really craving meat, you can get some fake meat! hah, honestly i try to stay away from the fake meat (makes me feel a little weird) and go for the veggies, but i must say the fake ham bits are really hammy. we have a running joke about the bean curd sheet "wow that's some good sheet" "would you like some more sheet my dear"
ha. ha. ha....
hm, not really that cheap for chinese food, but i will still come back.
Must try: spinach fried rice (with toasted pine nuts)
Look, I don’t even know what a bean curd sheet is. But I do know that if I was subjected to your little “running joke” of “would you like some more sheet my dear” on multiple occasions, I’d probably punch you in the face. Also, I just decided that I really don’t like the word “hammy.” Let’s not use it again, mmmkay? Thanks.

Moving on. Next up, a review of Shangri-La from someone even funnier than the last reviewer. These Yelpers sure are hi-larious.

I drove by Bok Choy Garden today and the sign was being painted over and the windows were boarded up.
NOOOOOOOOOOOoooooo.
At that moment I could have sworn I heard the sound of 386 ADDITIONAL pigs begging for their lives. Wheeee wheeee wheeeeeee! *sob*

This was the alternative suggestion. Although I will miss BCG desperately, Shangri-La did impress me with it's faux chicken cashew nut dish, egg-less "egg" roll and my favorite brown rice for under $7. Although after I just read some of the other reviews, I apparently failed to notice how dirty the place is and how much the food is not "authentic Chinese food". Maybe that's because I am white. Or because everything they serve here is Kosher. Isn't that a Jew thing?

I have to give a place 4 stars that explains what dishes on the menu will clean out my liver, colon, make my vision better, and improve my mental state. There is even a dish for erectile dysfunction.
Actually, there's not. I totally got you!!!!
I bet if you asked your server they could make you something for that, though.

Ok, for one, you hillbilly jackass, yes, kosher food is a “Jew thing.” But you, dear, are still an idiot. Also, good one about the dish on the menu that cures erectile dysfunction. You sure got us! Hardy har har, you really are a clever one!

Sigh.

Next, yet another review that can be filed under Totally Inappropriate Things To Write in a Restaurant Review. Jesus, people, can you puh-lease quit it with the Jew shit and the raping? Please?

If this were an actual village I would rape and pillage it every day. I have a thing for jook, aka congee, aka chinese porrige, aka hot steaming bowl of love.

I went here on a recommendation by awesome ex-New Yorker Rachelle R. and ordered the preserved egg and pork congee. It was like $2.95 so I thought it would be small, so I also got some har gow dim sum and these scallion pancake thingies. That'll fill me up. I could order more if I wanted to.

Ho ho ho. Silly American.

As I ladeled my steaming hot porrige of century egg love from the big iron pot they bring you, I realized I had ordered way too much. I could've had lunch for $2.95. Instead I induced food comatose for 8 bucks and change. Not bad at all. And EVERYthing was good, really good.

Um, so if the restaurant, Congee Village, were an actual village this dude would?rape the shit out of all its bitches? Ok. That’s what I thought. Got it. Ho ho ho, silly American, indeed.

And finally, a review of The Dragon Restaurant that requires three readings to even remotely understand. At all. Even a little bit.

enter the dragon. sorry. i really can't help it. buwahahahahahahaha

it's a korean chinese restaurant, but when you look at the roof its sign says "THE chinese restaurant", i'm sold to experience it afterall it is THE chinese restaurant.

i admit i didn't get to see the menu. the kid is old school like when you eat with your dad, you always ask "day, can i get this or can i get that? i promise i'll clean up my room and wash the bathrooms for the next 5 days if you get it, please. please" and dad will always go with "no. you eat what i order." right? you probably know what i mean. then the noona will be like the mom. "yes honey. you can get this.", but it all came out to what the parents want. "it's for our good.", they say. for reals, i caught a glimpse of what they offer. i didn't know orange chicken, kungpao chicken, and teriyaki chicken are chinese food.

i'm the obedient son growing up, i eat what's brought to the table. this time it's the jja jang myun, jjam pong, kang poongi , kung pao shrimp and jelly fish. jja jang myun was bravo, basically black bean sauce noodle, but isn't this chinaman's food, i ate these with my great grandpa back then all the time. jjam pong was A-OK. kang poongi is basically spicy orange chicken as in american spicy yo.

somehow today's acting mom was hungry and her stomach was doing the odering. which of course, wasting food is bad. finish it. i remembered my mama used to tell me, the more food you have left on your place like rice and etc, is how you determine how ugly your future will be. yes, i have more stories to tell, and i'm saving it for next time.

and yes, i had major food coma after. thanks noona! sorry lola, i really wish i was at the beach instead of passing out cold in ktown.

Enter the dragon. Buwahahahahahaha? (Again with all the funny jokes in these Yelp reviews). Beyond that, I believe he called his dinner “chinaman’s food,” his dining companion his “acting mom,” and ends with some mysterious message to someone named Lola about how he’d rather have been at the beach than passing out cold in ktown. All I really know is that this dude ate a jelly fish (ah!) and has some kind of creepy Oedipal complex he’s working out. Oh, and the orange chicken is “American spicy yo.” What else do you need to know when deciding where to go for Chinese food? Fucking Yelp.

—Amy Blair

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