Wild Rice has launched their summer menu with many new dishes created by Chef Todd Bright. I was in for a tasting last week from several dishes that I tried there were a few that stood out immediately.
This is Wild Rice’s iconoclastic take on Dim Sum. Each of the 10 dim sum dishes is priced at only $6. They include Chef Todd Bright’s innovative interpretations of classic snacks and my favourites from this part of the menu were the Prawn Toasts along with the Taro & Potato Croquettes.
The next delicious category awaiting exploration is Dish. The heading ‘ Dish’ is deliberately left in the singular to reflect that, in Chinese, words do not have plurals. You order ‘two dish’ not ‘two dishes.’ Under the Dish, you will find slightly larger ‘dishes’ and my favourite was the Salt & Pepper Organic Tofu ($8) and the Yarrow Meadows Duck Breast with Bitter Orange Peel Jus and Duck Gnocchi($17) you will find many other specialties in the Dish category that includes Wonton Noodle Soup with Ginger Pork Dumplings ($6), Buddha’s Curry ($10), Grilled King Oyster Mushroom with Sui Choy Salad ($9), Sticky Beef Short Ribs with Taro Frites ($14) or Haida Gwaii Salmon and Arctic Char with Bell Pepper Ragout and Scallion Salsa Verde ($14) to name some of the dozen items in this section.
I didn’t have any dessert this time around, you may want to try their Almond Tofu and Fresh Fruit Cocktail, or his version of summer shortcake –Gluten Free Mountainberry Teacake. For chocolate addicts, the Chocolate Tart with Strawberry Long Pepper Sorbet should do the trick while the Lychee Brulée adds an exotic finish to any meal. All desserts are priced at $6.
All Wild Rice’s dishes, including its desserts, are dairy-less and many offer a vegan option.
In China there is a tradition of street food called ‘dai pai dong’ where people wander from stall to stall trying different dishes – dumplings at one, soup at another, noodles in a different location and something sweet at a fourth. Their new summer menu reflects some of that sensibility.
Sharezies is the order of the day for summer dining. As in traditional Chinese restaurants, all dishes are designed to share and come with serving utensils and extra bowls. Food is served ‘family-style’ meaning that it comes out of the kitchen as soon as it is prepared. So if you like, you may roam the menu at will. There’s no set order to the food. It’s like eating at the Night Market but instead of physically moving from stall to stall you just meander through the menu.
Wild Rice is open for dinner seven nights a week starting at 5 p.m. and open on Fridays for lunch starting at 11:30 a.m.
117 West Pender Street, Vancouver BC www.wildricevancouver.com
By: Richard Wolak