When the Han Dynasty fell apart in 221 AD, members of the royal family fled south to Sha County to escape the invading forces. According to Chinese folklore, they brought quite an entourage with them: concubines, artisans and an army of cooks who turned the area into a food hub. Many believe that modern-day Sha’s vibrant culinary tradition descends directly from the royal kitchens, making it an edible history.
That this link to China’s culinary past can be found at Bek-Hee, a hole-in-the-wall Chinese takeout restaurant in Overland, came as a huge surprise to me. I’d driven by the place many times and assumed it was a dump — greasy, out-of-a-bag, Americanized Chinese food. And it basically was that, until the Lin family, expats from Sha County, took it over about six months ago and infused the menu with bits of their hometown’s specialties.
Keep reading: Cheryl Baehr's review of Bek Hee
Photos by Jennifer Silverberg for the Riverfront Times