Ah yes, I knew I must have missed something when I tried to provide a comprehensive coverage of things to do in Boston on the fly.
A quintessential Boston experience is actually not in Boston. In the town of Saugus, MA -- 45 minutes outside Boston, there is a Chinese restaurant called Kowloon Restaurant. The reason I stumbled upon it was that it was located next to my hotel. When I saw it, I totally expected it to be just like the other 9000 generic Chinese restaurants in America conveniently situated across a cheap hotel. Believe me, I've eaten my share of crappy food at places like that. Boy, was I in for a surprise with this one.
When we stepped into the restaurant, we were told the wait is approximately 1 hour. Under normal circumstances, we would have turned away. But there was something special about the restaurant that drew us in. It was unusually lively for a Chinese restaurant. The clientele looked upscale and chic, instead of pale and cheap, which is what you normally see in small town Chinese restaurants. Moreover, we learned there was an Elvis impersonation show on the second floor. "At a Chinese restaurant?" I remember being puzzled. I knew that I had to see this place for myself.
The place was absolutely packed, and the clientele seemed to uniformly be of the upper-class Caucasian family type. Normally in Chinese restaurants, you find a number of old people who can barely walk, and a number of overweight fellas who obviously have no business there. But not at Kowloon Restaurant. The entire customer base, from parents to teenagers, looked healthy and fit - a whole lot of beautiful people, some of whom are magazine cover-worthy.
The food was accompanied by a live piano performance. Of course, when you have live music and a whole lot of social ladder's finest, they want to dance! And that's exactly what they did. A few busted out their moves in the center of the room. Oh, did I mention, the entire restaurant was decorated with tropical impressions from head to toe? And, to my great surprise, the waiter actually spoke Mandarin! Even though NONE of their 1000+ customers was Chinese, except for us!
I've never quite seen a Chinese restaurant like Kowloon (Link #2), before or since. It is the most atmospherically vibrant Chinese restaurant that I've ever been to. It was as if I had walked into an executive bar for White people. The best part is, I stumbled upon it randomly. Bottom line: go there and see it for yourself, but make a reservation well in advance!