Tons of secondhand smoke, rude waitstaff.
A friend and I tried Mai Lee after hearing they had the best Chinese food in STL. We didn't think there was a smoking section because there was no divider in the (smallish) room. However, moments after being seated people lit up cigarettes on one side of the room - only 2 tables away from us. I don't have a problem eating at places with a divided off smoking section but this was awful - there didn't seem to be any ventilation system. We looked through the menus for 5 minutes and in that time we were asked 3 times if we were ready to order and when we said no, the waitstaff acted annoyed (the menu is 8+ pages long). Then even more people lit up so we left without ordering.
The food may be as good as I've heard but I won't be going back to find out.
Good food, poor service. A very typical Vietnamese food. very good Southern Vietnamese cuisine. However, the service is poor and the cleanliness is below Zero!!! Our family was served with dirty plates. And one more important thing, if you pay by credit cards, remember to check your statement online right away to compare to what they charge you on the bill. They over charged me for nearly $10!
My absolute favorite. i go here at least a few times a month. the pad thai is fabulous, but its not on the menu. i love this place and its by far my favorite restaurant.
Waitress Demanded Tip Upfront.
Save yourself the headache eat elsewhere. The waiters/waitresses demand that you tip them in their utmost, rudely behavior. I have never experience anything like this before. Sometimes, they will charge you the tip on your bill without notice, so look at your bill.
PS: The reviewer from CitySearch, who gave Mai Lee high marks, should reconsider what she is writing.
Mai Lee. I went to this restaurant because I saw it given a good review online and my, mai, mai I was really impressed with the small restaurant and the courses I had there were spectacular and I would recommend it to everyone with no reservations.
.... I was not impressed by Mai Lee in the slightest. The staff was quite rude, the restaurant was incredibly cramped, and the food was average at best. The only redeeming factor was the price, and possibly the egg rolls. Mai Lee reminded me why I don't venture from Pho Grand when it comes to Asian cuisine. Same prices, similiar (but much nicer) cuisine, great location and decor, and friendly servers.
You can eat here every day for a year and still not try everything on the menu..
Decor and space aren't Mai Lee's strong suits. The food does all the talking.
As you flip through the laminated pages, you'll be blown away that any restaurant could fill a menu this big. The neat trick is that this one does it so well. Waiters recognize that the massive menu prolongs decision-making, so they're always willing to help you match your mood with one of their specialties. If you decide to dine in rather than carry your feast home, take note of the fresh egg rolls and spring rolls on other patrons' tables and follow along--you won't be disappointed.
No more excuses. This place has an extremely large menu of both Chinese and Vietnamese cuisine. The food is tasty, much on the greasy side but great food for the buck. However, everytime I come here, my delicious meal is turned sour by the rude service by the waitresses and waiters.
Absolutely the very best golden tofu around.
Please try the golden tofu with chili, garlic and lemongrass. Any tofu item is wonderful, and tofu can be added to any dish. The spicing, and lack of oil used is superb. The lotus root salad is out of this world (ask for vegetarian) you won't be sorry. Closed on Mondays (try Vietnam Star, closed on Tue.)