Posts Tagged ‘Chinese’

Tasting Chinese Dumplings at Dinesty

In many cultures dumplings are a common food in one way or another. Dumplings are cooked balls of dough and are most often based on flour, potatoes or bread, and may include meat, fish, vegetables, or sweets. They may be cooked by boiling, steaming, simmering, frying, or baking. They may have a filling, or there may be other ingredients mixed into the dough and dumplings are sweet or savoury.

As many know I enjoy food experiences and adventures, I also enjoy connecting with people over twitter and social media, this adventure began from a twitter conversation that I had with Matty B who is the host of the Matty B Show on Virgin 95.3 FM. Together we are on a dumplings adventure where we will explore the many types of dumplings in as many cultures that feature them.

For our 1st Dumplings Adventure we explored the Chinese culture with a visit to Dinesty Chinese Restaurant and ordered many of the different types of dumplings they featured on their menu.

Fish Steamed Dumplings

Fish Steamed Dumplings

Pork Dumplings

Pork Dumplings

Pork Fried Dumplings

Pork Fried Dumplings

Beef Dumplings

Beef Dumplings

Shrimp & Pork Dumplings

Shrimp & Pork Dumplings

Steamed mashed Red Bean Paste Dumplings

Steamed mashed Red Bean Paste Dumplings

We shared the Fish steamed dumplings, Pork dumplings, Pork fried dumplings, Beef dumplings, Shrimp & Pork Dumplings and Steamed mashed red bean paste dumplings.

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One thing that we liked was the menu at Dinesty which featured photos of many of their dumplings dishes, they also provided a guide showing people how to eat the traditional Xiaolongbao.

Wikipedia best describes these: Xiaolongbao (Xiao Long Bao) is a type of steamed bun or baozi from the Jiangnan region of China, especially Shanghai and Wuxi. It is traditionally steamed in small bamboo baskets, hence the name (xiaolong is literally small steaming basket). Xiaolongbao are often referred to as soup dumplings or simply dumplings in English.

Dinesty on Robson

1719 Robson Street, Vancouver

Neighborhood: West End

Phone number (604) 669-7769

Stay tuned for our next dumplings adventure as we explore different cultures in and around Vancouver.

By: Richard Wolak

WESTERN LAKE

4989 Victoria Drive, Vancouver

Tel: 604-321-6862

Web: n/a

Twitter: n/a

Advice: Make a reservation on weekends for dim sum.

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Dim Sum is one of those amazing experiences that many partake in during weekends throughout the year, it’s the other version of brunch where Chinese restaurants are often packed with eager folk mingling with friends or family over ideally inexpensive tasty dishes. Going with a group of friends is the way to enjoy this multi dish experience and that is just what I did recently. Websturr was the ringleader of this Dim Sum group, I joined along with Anita, Daniel, Louis, Stephanie, Tim and Anita.

Baked Egg Custard Tarts

Baked Egg Custard Tarts

Spicy String Beans with minced pork

Spicy String Beans with minced pork

Chefs specialty Shredded Chicken

Chefs specialty Shredded Chicken

Deep fried Tofu with peppery salt

Deep fried Tofu with peppery salt

Steamed Prawn Dumplings

Steamed Meat Rissoles

Steamed Rice Flour Rolls

Steamed Rice Flour Rolls

Steamed Prawn Dumplings

Steamed Prawn Dumplings

Pan Fried Eggplant with shrimp paste

Pan Fried Eggplant with shrimp paste

Steamed Shiu-Mai Dumplings

Steamed Shiu-Mai Dumplings

Stir fried Radish Cake in spicy xo sauce

Stir fried Radish Cake in spicy xo sauce

Steamed Rice Flour Wrap with chinese donut

Steamed Rice Flour Wrap with chinese donut

As dish after dish arrive to our large round table, each of us indulged in tasting the deliciousness, my favourites were the Baked Egg Custard Tarts, Spicy String Beans with minced pork, Chefs specialty Shredded Chicken, Deep fried Tofu with peppery salt, Steamed Meat Rissoles, Steamed Rice Flour Rolls, Steamed Prawn Dumplings, Pan Fried Eggplant with shrimp paste, Steamed Shiu-Mai Dumplings, Stir fried Radish Cake in spicy xo sauce and Steamed Rice Flour Wrap with Chinese donut.

The restaurant serves dinner nightly as well, but has a separate Dim Sum chef on weekends. You will find an extensive selection of traditional favourites on the Dim Sum menu all well priced, making this dining experience inexpensive and delicious.

Review by: Richard Wolak

PEACEFUL RESTAURANT

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532 W Broadway, Vancouver

Tel: (604) 879-9878

Web:  http://www.peacefulrestaurant.com/

Twitter: @PeacefulResto

Advice: Go early and join the line-up at peak times.

Peaceful Potato Rolls

Peaceful Potato Rolls

Spicy Gingered Beef

Spicy Gingered Beef

Chilli-Garlic Eggplant

Chilli-Garlic Eggplant

Many of us have those special places for comfort food that hits the spot. This is one of those places and a true gem that I visit when I am yearning for flavourful comfort food. I have dined here a lot over the years and more times in the past couple of months, here it is best to see what dishes your neighboring table is eating, take note and order those dishes on your next visit. Some of my favourite dishes here are the Peaceful Potato Rolls ($7.95)- crispy flatbread rolled with shredded potato, scallions & sweet hoisin sauce; as well as the Spicy Gingered Beef ($12.95) crispy shredded beef tossed in a spicy gingery sauce; and the Chilli-Garlic Eggplant ($12.95) sautéed with shredded pork, bamboo, woodear mushroom & chilli paste.

Their hand-crafted noodles are a draw, as well are their steam buns, noodle soups and so much more. This is the original location and you will also find a few more locations around the city.

Review by: Richard Wolak

SEN CHINESE BISTRO

sen bistro 1

UPDATED 10/13/13 BUSINESS HAS CLOSED

101-1788 W. Broadway, Vancouver

Tel: (604) 558-3989

Web: http://senchinesebistro.com/

Twitter: n/a

Advice: Sharing dishes here is highly suggested.

Celery & dried Scallop salad

Celery & dried Scallop Salad

Salt & Pepper Crunchy Tofu

Salt & Pepper Crunchy Tofu

Tea Smoked Duck

Tea Smoked Duck

To properly experience and understand Chinese cuisine in Vancouver, one must either be friends with or know Stephanie Yuen (Author and Food Writer), I’m fortunate for both. I dined with Stephanie and her husband Henry, along with friends Cassandra and Marck for dinner which was more like a feast of wonderful flavours. We started off with the Celery & dried Scallop Salad ($7.99) a refreshing starter dish; this was followed by the tasty Salt & Pepper Crunchy Tofu ($5.29). Next was the outstanding Tea Smoked Duck ($13.99) one of their house specialties.

Sizzling Teppan Triple a Beef

Sizzling Teppan Triple a Beef

Sable Fish with sautéed green onion

Sable Fish with sautéed green onion

 Golden Honey Prawns

Golden Honey Prawns

Pea Shoots

Pea Shoots

Wok fried Pork Slices.

Wok fried Pork Slices.

Next was another outstanding dish, the Sizzling Teppan Triple a Beef ($13.99) so flavourful and hearty; this was followed by the flavourful and delicious Sable Fish with sautéed green onion ($16.99) another house specialty. At the same time we were served the Golden Honey Prawns ($16.99) followed by the tender Pea Shoots ($13.99) and a new dish the Wok fried Pork Slices.

Dumplings stuffed with Red Bean

Dumplings stuffed with Red Bean

Lastly dessert, and as everyone who reads my blog knows I do have a sweet tooth and love a good dessert, I’ve never been fond of most Chinese desserts, however the one we had to finish our meal here was delightful, handcrafted dumplings stuffed with red bean the perfect ending to a wonderful dining experience.

Review by: Richard Wolak

LE TIGRE CUISINE

Various locations daily

Web: http://www.letigrecuisine.ca/

Twitter: @LeTigreTruck

Advice: Follow them on twitter for daily open hours and location.

Roasted Beet Fries

Steam Bun

Serving modern Asian cuisine on a food truck, owners Chef Clement Chan & Chef Steven Kuan are creating their own contemporary interpretation of classical Chinese cuisine. I first saw them last summer at the Richmond Night Market and then visited a few months later at their Georgia spot for some delish eats! I had the outstanding Roasted Beet Fries dusted with plum powder and spicy mayo along with the Steam Bun with bang bang sesame chicken, asian slaw, basil and cilantro.

There are offering new dishes all the time combining local seasonal ingredients with an abundant selection of high quality sustainable seafood and organic meats from B.C. They say it best, they want their customers to explore their culinary boundaries by pairing traditional Chinese offerings with new and refreshing flavours and textures. I would keep an eye out for this bright truck and for the new dishes these two chefs create.

Review by: Richard Wolak

Experiencing the Richmond Night Market

On Saturday night my friend Nikki Caine and I visited this market for the first time, I know this may come as a surprise to you, how is it possible that I haven’t been before, well it’s true. I first thought we would check it out, spend an hour and or so, we quickly discovered that this was going to be a night long experience, we then spent 4 hours eating our way around the market.

Pazza Rella Pizza

Margerita Pizza – Pazza Rella Pizza

Salami Pizza – Pazza Rella Pizza

Our 1st stop was to Pazza Rella Pizza and believe me this was a good idea, Neapolitan style pizza made in a wood burning oven that is on a food truck, very cool and a great experience. Nikki and I shared two pizzas, the Margerita (fior di latte cheese, tomato sauce, basil) and the Salami (salami, cheese, tomato sauce), you can find these two wonderful women pizza makers and their truck at this market every weekend through October or follow them on twitter @PazzaRellaPizza

Roti Canai

Making the Roti at Roti Canai

Chocolate Roti at Roti Canai

Our 2nd stop after running into my friend Russel Co (he is an experienced Richmond Night Market visitor who happily gave us some helpful eating tips and the best BBQ spot, more on that later in the post) was at Roti Canai and we ordered the Chocolate Roti. My friend hadn’t tried Roti before which I couldn’t believe, so we ordered it and since I hadn’t had chocolate in Roti before I thought heck let’s try it and so glad that we did, this was delicious!

Tip: Since it’s always crowded and there are line-ups almost everywhere, throw out the notion of eating savouries then dessert and mix it up.

Georgio’s Pinoy BBQ

Georgio’s Pinoy BBQ

Our 3rd stop was to Georgio’s Pinoy BBQ  (this was Russel’s pick, he said it was the best BBQ at the market) we waited and we watched them barbq the meat, then it was time to indulge in BBQ Pork on a skewer and it was flavourful.

As we walked up and down the aisles of food stalls, some we looked at such as the Deep Fried Dessert Bus (we couldn’t eat here,  it wasn’t a food of choice for us, however the line-up was deep) people were lining up for deep fried mars and snickers bars, even deep fried cheese cake.  We continued walking.

Japanese Rice Burger & Fries

Japanese Yam Fries with honey garlic sauce

Our 4th stop was at Japanese Rice Burger & Fries and here we ordered the Japanese Yam Fries with honey garlic sauce and this was yum, again we were sharing and this was a good dish to share.

making Dragon Beard Candy

We were so curious after hearing about Dragon Beard Candy, having no idea as to what that was, we visited their stand to watch and talk, discovering that it is a Chinese version of Cotton Candy, we will indulge in this treat next time.

Mango Yummy

Mangos, Vanilla Ice Cream & Shaved Ice at Mango Yummy

Our 5th stop was at Mango Yummy (this was the favourite pick of the women who work at Pazza Rella Pizza and we took their suggestion), it all looked good, we settled on the Mangos & Ice Cream with shaved ice and again sharing was the right thing to do, this was delicious and was one of my favourite dishes of the night.

More walking around we saw a stand that jumped out at a me more in awe, I had no idea what Itofu was selling, so I had a closer look, I was curious as to what Tofu with Black Sugar was, they saw me being very curious and then offered me a taste which I happily had and decided to try that dish another time.

Walked by Le Tigre Cuisine, I knew that these guys also have a food truck located downtown during the week, since they had quite the line-up I decided I will wait and visit their food truck one day soon.

Rotato

Making Rotato

Seasoning our Rotato

Caramel Rotato

Our 6th stop was at Rotato, obviously this is one of the most popular stands at the market, this one seemed to have the longest line-up all night long, so we decided why wait an hour earlier in the night and we made it our last stop of the night at 10:30 pm and waited about 10 minutes. We shared the Caramel Rotato, now if you haven’t been to this market you may be wondering what a Rotato is, besides the cool name, it is actually a potato that was sliced up in some sort of twisted machine, then skewered on a stick and deep fried. Then after you choose your flavour (they have savoury and sweet flavours) they sprinkle it all over and voila you are served your Rotato –this was really good, worth the 10 minute wait, not sure if it is worth an hour wait but you can be the judge.

Tip: You need good walking shoes, wear dark clothes (if you wear white any food that lands on you will show), and take a long a sweater or light jacket.

Tip: Don’t drive to this market, take Canada Line like we did, it’s quick and so easy.

Tip: There is a long line-up to get in and it moves quite fast.

Tip: It is cash only for entrance as well as at most of the vendors.

Cost: $1.50 per person to enter

Hours: 7pm – 12:30am

Open: Weekends at night only thru the summer until October

Location: 8351 River Road, Richmond and here is a map on how to find it.

We also walked around all of the non-food stalls and saw all sorts of neat items, the item that stood out the most was the cases for iphones, this is one popular item which can be found at the 10+ stalls throughout the market. On the food side there were 88 Food stalls and on the other side at least 200 stalls, so expect to do lots of walking and most of all lots of eating at this market.

By: Richard Wolak

ALWAYS SEAFOOD RESTAURANT

4298 Main Street, Vancouver

Tel: 604-876-6110

Web: n/a

Twitter: n/a

Advice: Alaskan King Crab season happens once a year, generally in March, contact the restaurant in advance for reservations. Go with a group of friends to share dishes.

I joined up with a group of friends for what turned out to be a 12 course dinner celebrating Alaskan King Crab. My friend and fellow writer Stephanie Yuen chose the restaurant as it’s known to be one of the best for Alaskan King Crab and other dishes. Our dinner was made up of 4 Alaskan King Crab dishes along with some of their other speciality dishes. At the big round table along with Stephanie and me, there was Henry, Cassandra, Rosana, Maria, Natalie, Matt, Nikki and Jason.

Crab & Fish Maw Soup

Garlic & Ginger King Crab

Deep Fried Crab

To begin we had the Crab & Fish Maw Soup followed by the outstanding and flavourful Garlic & Ginger King Crab and then the delicious Deep Fried Crab.

Royal Tofu

Tossed Noodles in crab jus

Baked Portugese Fried rice in the shell

The next round of dishes included their house specialty Royal Tofu which I loved, along with the Tossed Noodles in crab jus and the tasty Baked Portugese Fried rice in the shell which was the last crab dish.

Steamed Scallop and Eggplant in black bean sauce

Pork Chop with walnuts in mayo sauce

Goose in greens

Taiwanese Lettuce

The next round of dishes featured some of their off the menu dishes, I loved the Steamed Scallop and Eggplant in black bean sauce and didn’t care for the Pork Chop with walnuts in mayo sauce or the Goose in greens, and I liked the last savoury dish the Taiwanese Lettuce.

Mung Bean Soup

Honey Pumpkin with walnuts.

For dessert we were served their warm Mung Bean Soup along with my favourite dessert of the two the Honey Pumpkin with walnuts.

The menu is filled with Cantonese and some Taiwanese dishes and they are open late into the wee hours of the next morning should you be on the search for a late night of eating.

Review By: Richard Wolak

Chinois Restaurant Opening

Executive Sous Chef Christopher Chabot (L) & Executive Chef Ryan Mah (R)

On Wednesday, November 9th I attended the opening party of Chinois Restaurant in Yaletown.  Proprietor Peter Girges of Rocksglass Concepts was on hand to greet media and other invited guests as they opened Yaletown’s only Chinese restaurant.

X.O. Fried Rice

The menu is made up of traditional Chinese dishes that have been jazzed up or fused if you will, from BBQ to meat, Seafood, Poultry to rice, noodles and vegetables.

Jumbo Prawns with candied walnuts

Prawn Toast

Out of all the appetizers that I tried my favourite was the Jumbo Prawns with candied walnuts in a creamy spicy sauce followed by the Prawn Toast.

White and red wine was being poured along with champagne and some house cocktails.

Executive Chef Ryan Mah, formerly of Goldfish and Joe Fortes is working alongside Executive Sous Chef Christopher Chabot also formerly of Goldfish. General Manager is Gordon Fai.

The David Nichol designed room is dark with Gold shining lights taking their cue to the old Chinese Lanterns that you may find in Chinatown.

Chinois Restaurant is located at 1035 Mainland Street in Yaletown, the restaurant is open for dinner nightly.

Call 604-629-8808 or reservations. On the web at http://www.chinoisrestaurant.ca

By: Richard Wolak

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