Kravings: The Pacer’s Kamika Patel Finds Unexpected Discovery Mexican Eatery Bien Chido

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Kravings: The Pacer’s Kamika Patel Finds Unexpected Discovery Mexican Eatery Bien Chido

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The expression, “mistakes can lead to discoveries,” does apply to reality. Whether it be accidentally tossing a shirt into the washer to soon find out it would not have shrunk if it had been hand washed or finding out someone’s real name after having called them the wrong one for quite a while, there are many instances in life when a little blunder can teach you something new.

I experienced just that when I sought to do my Kravings on a Saturday night with family friend, Ami Shah. I found out that the restaurant I was going to review was not on the street of Algonquin, but rather an hour away in the city of Algonquin. Finding that out a minute before having to leave, panic set in and my hands immediately searched for my phone to find another restaurant. I eventually set my mind to Bien Chido, a quaint Mexican eatery located in Schaumburg, a 15-minute drive from RMHS. 

Upon arriving at the location, the venue was tucked away in the middle of a seemingly deserted strip mall. We were about to drive away until we saw two banners hung inside the windows, displaying the restaurant’s name and simplistic logo. 

The inside of the restaurant was quite a surprise. When peering in through the windows, we were only able to see a cashier’s counter and sports bar styled surface, so Shah and I expected a compact space. However, upon entering the venue, we were shocked to find a whole other section of large booths and tables off to the side of the entrance.

Although the size of the place was a delightful discovery, the interior made up of painted orange walls, black booths, grey oak floors, and scattered paintings clashed all-together to create an unappealing setting. It didn’t necessarily complete the homey or authentic vibe that I think the owners were attempting to set. 

It was time for Shah and I to focus on helping our hunger tame itself. After being quickly seated in a booth, we were able to glance over an ample menu offering an array of familiar meals.

Whilst snacking on the delicious and crunchy tortilla chips that I kept dipping in the various and flavorsome salsas that were set on the table once we sat down, I decided to order the specialty taco dinner made up of the milanesa and shrimp tacos served with rice and beans. Being among one of the most decisive people I know, Shah immediately chose to get the veggie enchiladas with red mole sauce. 

It took less than 10 minutes for our food to arrive. Our meals were plated beautifully on cutting boards, appealing to a trendy and modern look. I first chose to try the shrimp taco that was the prettiest item plated on the cutting board. My first bite into the taco set me back to a vivid memory of me relaxing on my patio as I watched the vibrant sun setting on the horizon. The taco tasted fresh and fun. The seared shrimp was crispy-crunchy and the tangy chipotle mayo paired well with the light shrimp seasoning. The other toppings within the taco including a spring mix and Pico de Gallo nicely paired together to make the item a refreshing dish with delicate flavors to explore. 

The other taco on the cutting board failed to satisfy me as much as the first one. I rank the milanesa taco below the shrimp taco because the flavor was inadequate. The breaded chicken cutlet was rubbery and the Pico de Gallo and lettuce created a wet feel to the taco. It was the most tasteless dish of the night, and the only reason that I finished it was because my innovative self mixed in some of the salsas that were set on the table to create somewhat of a piquant taste. 

Unfortunately, Shah ended up being completely unsatisfied with her meal. A mountain of mole negro was piled on top of her enchiladas that were only stuffed with sautéed vegetables. The spicy-sweet flavor, which hit the right pockets of taste buds on its own, did not pair well with the bland vegetables in the enchiladas. She had to fill up on the side of beans and Spanish rice that were served with her meal as well. 

My mistake, in the beginning, did lead me to discover Bien Chido, which I would have otherwise never visited, but it was a discovery that I will most likely never look back. I will say the service at Bien Chido should be positively noted as our server was attentive all throughout the meal and brought everything out in a speedy manner. Sadly, however, the food was subpar and the prices were more expensive than those of closer Mexican restaurants like Grande Jakes or Senor Tacos. It would not be worth the travel to visit Bien Chido, when the formerly mentioned local eateries serve to be more fulfilling. Shah and I left this Kravings with defeat displayed on our faces, viewing the night as a disappointment.