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San Pablo: Nominating Lee's Garden for best 69 cent garlic fried chicken leg. The 30 cent salt and pepper shrimp is good too

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… and $3.39 will get a Styrofoam tray loaded with one entrée and a choice of chow mein or fried rice. The fried rice is the better choice.

GARLIC FRIED CHICKEN LEG – really good. The coating is crispy, the chicken is juicy and nicely marinated with garlic and Chinese 5 spice (I’m guessing). . . This is the drumstick and not the thigh, but it is a good-sized, meaty drumstick.

SALT AND PEPPER SHRIMP – large head-on prawn and best if you can get them out of the fryer with a slice of jalepeno. While not the best S&P shrimp I've had, certainly the best at that price and a nice snack.

FRIED FISH – looked good. The fish was fine but the batter was a little limp after sitting in the steam tray

BBQ PORK – This is a large hunk of meat that is 50 cents extra with the combo dinner. Choose your hunk of meat and they hack it up. Like most of the pork there, the meat is chewy but nicely spiced.

EGGPLANT IS SPICY GARLIC SAUCE – Pretty, colorful purple Chinese eggplant. Good but not very spicy.

SPARE RIBS IN BLACK BEAN SAUCE – Very chewy, nicely spiced, but I wouldn’t order again.

POT STICKERS – with some dinners or 3 for $1.50. Not even worth it at that price. VERY thick wrapper and forgettable filling.

There has been a Lee’s for a long time on San Pablo Dam Road in the Lucky Shopping Center. The second location opened recently in the International Shopping Center.

Both have identical steam table and menu items. The new location, across from San Pablo Market, has more room and is a nicer place to eat-in.

There is a lot of food for the money. The Styrofoam trays are filled to overflowing. They also have the option of ordering a small container of any item ... a scoop ... for $1.50.

Choose with your eyes. If it looks tired, skip it. However during peak times, there is lots of business, lots of wok action in the kitchen and the trays are replenished regularily.

Lee’s is a very good friend of MSG.

Keep in mind that most of my Chinese eating experience is broccoli beef and I don’t eat steam table food often. It is not great food (except maybe that chicken leg) but it is decent enough and uber-inexpensive steam table food.

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Lee's Garden
2415 San Pablo Dam Rd, San Pablo, CA

Lee's Garden #2
2300 El Portal Dr, San Pablo, CA 94806

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  1. I've gone there a couple times. It's rather startling the amount of food they give you in their combos. Any combo (~$4) is good for two meals easily.

    1. I always get fried rice with Hunan Chicken and Lemon Chicken, which are both VERY Americanized--sweet, sticky, colorful, and crispy--but boy, are they made for craving!

      1 Reply
      1. re: Sophia C.

        I was thinking that they might have 'good' versions of dishes like lemon chicken and sweet and sour pork ... and by good I mean everything that makes them , uh, American. I haven't tried them yet though. I keep getting sucked into the place for the chicken leg, and there's usually something I give a try. They are soooo MSG heavy though.

      2. The original comment has been removed