India has a Chinese Diaspora possibly because both these countries have been in touch for thousands of years be it Buddhism, Silk Route, wars or more recently as competitors. As a kid I remember going to a Chinese dentist’s clinic of S S Chiang in Patna (Opposite BN College for those who know Patna) and there were bunch of them on that road probably cousins who moved out of Calcutta. Not sure if they had official degrees but there used to be a queue always. Patna being my maternal grandmother’s place we used to go often in our summer vacations and some of those vacations used to become more of medical checks. Mr. Chiang’s son was practicing those days and I remember he speaking to my Grandmother in a very good bhojpuri. I still don’t have couple of molars that were removed by him, so can’t really forget the Chinese Dentist in my life 🙂
Anyways this is my first review of a restaurant, I am not a great foodie but once in a while I do go out eating.Lou Han is located on 13th Cross, 27th Main Road (Opposite CPWD Quarters). I have been there many times and there is one thing that this place makes you feel is the age old business mantra of “Customer is King” is really not true. Lou Han is not a fine dine or an expensive place, you should be done under 500 rupees for two with really a good filling meal. There is a lady (of Chinese descent) who runs the place and she speaks in Hindi. There is definitely something strange with the way she speaks Hindi, I am not sure if she is angry while speaking to customers or its her usual tone while speaking Hindi. It has so happened that I have seen many time people getting angry with the way she takes order. If you ask too many things on the menu she just loses her control and shouts. There was an instance when there were bunch of “just college passouts into jobs” who were making quite a noise. She was getting angry while taking their orders but at some point she lost it and blasted them saying they can go out if they continue creating such a menace. I have seen couple of times she has told customers to go if they are too late. But even with all this you will always find 70% of table occupied. Where on the earth will you find vegetarian Chinese food, probably not even in China 🙂
I have had various dishes noodles, rices, manchurian (probably a Indian Chinese preparation unheard of in China), tofu and few more dishes and I would tell you it has never been that we have left anything on the table. The quality and taste of the food is great.So even after being afraid of getting scolded people keep thronging the tables of Lou Han.
There is always a very old lady probably in her seventies sitting on one of tables near the billing counter. Probably the family lives in the same premises also.
So the food that is served is homely and the service and ambience you get is homely as well and if you have forgotten scoldings of your mom you would get that too very easily.
Overall food is good and I liked it all the time I have been there.
Cost ~ 500 for two
Quantity – Bountiful
Ambience – Average
Service – Questionable 🙂
Must – Patience (Takes time for food to come to table) and forget the idea that “Customer is King”
(I am not a pure vegetarian and do eat other non vegetarian stuff as well)
Here is a business tidbit from the Lou Han experience. If a product/service is unique and customer would not find it anywhere else, you can be little harsh on customers and they would still come back. One doesn’t have to worship their customer always but work on making their products/services worthy 🙂