Taco Luis in Lansdowne Foodcourt

This is another Nanzaro’s food adventure. He loves food which he has the say of what ingredients he wants.

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Taco Luis in Lansdowne Mall is one of the places he went for lunch after school.

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The above is the 10-inch Beef Special. It came with a drink and a side of tater tots.

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Nanzaro’s choice of accompaniments include lettuce, red onions, sour cream, shredded cheese, jalapeno and hot banana peppers. He loves spicy food.

Note from Nanzaro: the servers usually add all toppings by default if you do not tell them your preference.

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The amount of beef is generous.

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Nanzaro also enjoys the crispy crunchy tater tots.

Taco Luis on Urbanspoon

Richmond Center Dining Terrace

Nanzaro wanted to have lunch at the newly opened Richmond Center Dining Terrace. The reason was he wanted to get a shirt on sale from Aeropostle in Richmond Center.

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The new dining terrace has a large sitting capacity. This is just part of the dining area. It was busy on a weekend noon. Parking in Richmond Center in weekends has always been a challenge.

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Nanzaro had the above from Bourbon Grill. The Bourbon chicken was actually pretty good; sweetish with some charring. It was $8.84 including tax.

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I had a Shrimp Tom Yum Noodle Soup from Thai Express. It was not spicy despite I dumped a load of Sriracha into it. The soup actually tasted sweetish and just lightly sour. No kick at all.

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Credit card is accepted at Thai Express. Continue reading

Saboten, Aberdeen Food Court in Richmond

Arkensen had a birthday lunch at Ninkazu and he is supposed to meet up with his friends at the Aberdeen Mall. So, Nanzaro and I decided to have lunch at Aberdeen food court after we dropped Arkensen off.

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I decided to try out Saboten Japanese Cutlet, a relatively new addition to the food court. Since it’s opening, I had seen long line up the couple of occasions I was at the food court. I hate line up and so, I did not bother to try the food the couple of times I was at there.

This time, there is no line at all.

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I ordered the Tenderloin Katsu Sandwich which came pre-packed. The moment I placed the order, the sandwich was packed in a plastic bag and handed to me even before I managed to get my purse out.

The Tenderloin Katsu Sandwich came in three pieces of about 3.5″x1.5″x1.5″ dimension. The pork tenderloin is crispy on the outside with a slightly tangy sauce. It was good except that it is very small.

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The Tenderloin Katsu Sandwich is $5.32 with tax.

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You can click on the menu to have a larger view.

As for Nanzaro, I could not persuade him to order something from Saboten. He wanted to pick his own food. Continue reading

Vera’s Burger Express in Aberdeen Mall, Richmond

The summer vacation had started. Nanzaro is eager to come with me for some groceries shopping because I promised to bring him to the newly opened Vera’s Burger Express in Aberdeen Mall in Richmond.

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Although it is still early around 11:00AM, there is a short line up. Nanzaro told me that this location was a Burger King before Vera’s Burger Express took over. He sure has better memory than me.

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For the opening of this location, Vera’s Burger Express advertised in the local newspaper by offering a $5 coupon. This offer expires on 30th June 2011.

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Vera’s Burger seems to have won numerous awards for their burger as displayed on the banner at the store front.

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Vera’s Burger Express has an opened kitchen where we can see the action going. Occasionally, we can see the flames from the grilling of the burger. This is what Nanzaro ordered, … Continue reading

My Lunch: Chen Shanghai’s XLB at Xu’s Wonton House

This is another blog post done entirely with the iPhone, including the pictures and video.

It came as a shock to many people to learn that Wang’s had closed. I found out only last week. The new place is called Xu’s. Apparently new owner. The new lady in charge look very familiar but I just can’t remember where I had seen her before.

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So here I am trying Xu’s XLB. They call this the Baiyulan XLB which is $4 for a basket of … Continue reading

[CRA 2011] Claypot Chicken and Sausage Rice from James Snack

Suanne and I met up with Charles of Mamak Cafe a couple of weeks ago. I wanted to show him the claypot rice place and catch up with him after the event we had at his restaurant. We were so busy before and during the event that we did not manage to really chat. Charles said he hardly ever come over to Richmond and wanted to have a closer look at the food scene here.

Moreover I wanted to also blog about another CRA2011 award winning dish. So we met up at Parker Place to grab a pound of siu yook before we walked over to the adjacent strip mall.

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If ever there is a food court in Richmond that I would call my favourite, I would say it is this one in the Empire Center. This is where King Buffet, Bushair, Sunway and Shiang Garden is located.

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The reason why Suanne and I like this place is because it is relatively unknown. It is slow and quiet(er) than the other food court. We come here when we want a slow leisurely meal.

There are not many stall here and to us that is part of what we like. Even with the lack of stalls, the stalls here are unique and very good. Nine times out of ten, we could come here either for:

  • the Claypot Rice in James Snack
  • the Chicken from Choi House (see link)
  • the Meat Organs from Lai Leung Kee (same link above)

The other stalls we are not quite interested in as much.

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Our object coming here is the stall called James Snack. The English name is weird. They don’t serve snacks here. What they are famous for is their claypot rice and also the steamed lotus leaf rice.

You see, the name James Snack is a direct translation from the Cantonese name Jeem-See-Lack. That sort of mean … Continue reading

The Richmond Public Market on Westminster Highway, Richmond (Part 2 of 2)

Alright. This is the follow-up on the previous post where I talked a bit about the Richmond Public Market.

We visited the Richmond Public Market (RPM) over a period of several weeks. So, don’t be surprised over all the food we described here. We are not pigs, OK? Alright, sometimes we are but not this time. :-)

The RPM Food Court has a total of about 16 stalls. In this post we are going to cover just five of them.

All of the sixteen stalls have something unique to offer. All of them has lots to offer. All of them are really cheap too. And the menu of each stall is not trivial. I would say that if we just consider conservatively an average of 40 dishes per stall, we are looking at over 640 dishes to select from.

However, those of us who had been to the RPM knows that is not the cleanest of food courts around. It is showing its age. At least as far as I know they had passed all health inspections.


XI AN CUISINE

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Xi An Cuisine is named after the capital of the Shaanxi province. The city of Xian is one of the cities of the Four Great Ancient Capitals of China and the home of the Terracota Army. That is one city I would love to visit one day.

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Nanzaro and I often want to get the Spicy Wonton. Suanne and Arkensen are indifferent to this dish. It wasn’t the greatest of spicy wontons but then this is just … Continue reading

The Richmond Public Market on Westminster Highway, Richmond (Part 1 of 2)

This is continuing the series of the Asian Food Courts in Richmond.

It was back in September when I sat down and listed down all the food courts in Richmond. It did not occur to me before that but I soon realized that there are eight food courts peppered all over Richmond. I was surprised. I knew there are a number of food courts but I did not realize there were eight.

Since then I went back to these food courts and had made fresh blog posts about these places:

Mind you, it is not like we had never blogged about the Richmond Public Market before. Looking back our archives, it seems like we had at least four other posts about this public market: here, here, here and here.

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Way back when our boys were just toddlers and money were tight for eating out, this is the place we often end up with. The food here is cheap and the choices were plentiful. We hold fond memories of this place.

The food court is located on one half of the second floor of the building. Right in the middle of the food court is a bubble tea stall. We remember that stall but it has changed owners already by now. When Arkensen and Nanzaro was just really small, they … Continue reading

Admiralty Center Food Court on McKim Way, Richmond

Here is continuing on the series of Asian food courts in Richmond.

If you remember this post when I said I was beginning to look at Richmond’s Food Courts in a different light, I listed eight food courts and so far done five of them. I had written at some point Aberdeen Center and the Richmond Public Market but to this series it doesn’t count as our visit was so long ago. So three more to go!

  • Parker Place (link and link)
  • Empire Center (link)
  • Yaohan Center (link)
  • President Plaza (link)
  • Pacific Plaza (link)
  • Admiralty Center
  • Aberdeen Center
  • Richmond Public Market

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I guess a lot of people does not know this small little business center tucked in McKim Way, let alone know that this building is called the Admiralty Center. Not many people know too that this building has a respectable food court in it too.

Parking is available by the right side of the building. It is not apparent to many people but there is a small entrance that leads to a double storey car park. We just discovered this car park. We had always either park at Top Gun’s car park (which we now think we should not have!) or park on the street.

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The Admiralty Center must have been named after the famous business district in Hong Kong. This is one of those buildings that sprung up during the days when immigration from Hong Kong was at its peak.

One would have thought that this is a dead business center but it is fully tenanted. We thought the businesses here looks overwhelmingly Cantonese.

The food court is located at the second floor of the building.

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The food stalls too are overwhelmingly Cantonese too. You don’t get that “cosmopolitan” air you get like in the Richmond Public Market or Burnaby’s Crystal Mall food court. Why even the Parker Place food court has Taiwanese and Shanghainese food. Here it is entirely Cantonesey.

It is not a big food court. Just eight stalls — eight very good stalls. We were quite surprised that there were a lot of customers. We arrived there before noon on a Saturday and it was already half-filled but past noon, the place was bustling. I see a lot of them came in families coming for lunch after Saturday classes for their kids. When Arkensen and Nanzaro was younger, their Saturday mornings are filled with some activities or other (like Chinese classes, music, sports) and then we would go out for lunch in the afternoon. Yes, I can see many of the customers on that Saturday are like that.

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I am on a single minded track for the Chicken Rice. I cannot remember who now but someone told me in an earlier post that the Hainanese Chicken Rice in Admiralty Center rocks.

There is only one stall that sells Chicken Rice, so it was no mistaking which stall it is. It is called the M&W Food Kitchen.

I like the service. The lady who manned that counter was helpful and chatty. I was standing in front of the stall for a while unable to decide what I wanted because there were so many to choose from. Without me even asking, she said “take your time. we have … ” and went on to describe their dishes. Most of which went swoosh over my head because she was explaining in Cantonese.  She said that the stall has been here for one year only.

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This is what made me so indecisive (click picture above to show it in larger image). You see they not only have Hainanese Chicken. Apparently they are chicken specialist.

As you can see, there is Gwai-Fei (empress) chicken, Gong-nan chicken, Salt-baked chicken, Hand-pulled chicken, Hainan Chicken. They have other beef items too but I was told their chicken is what matters.

So there I was unable to decide which chicken dish I wanted.

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If I must say so myself, I think I am gifted at charming food court ladies. So I charmed the lady at the counter and said I can’t decide and I wanted every of the four (five?) chicken dishes but I don’t want to order five dishes. I stood back and thought some more before I stepped forward and asked her if she could give me two types of chicken on the rice. She was a bit hesitant and said wait a minute while she see if Sifu (definition here) agrees or not. She came back smiling saying it’s just for me.

So I walked away with a plate of … Continue reading

Yaohan Center Food Court — Go After 6PM

A long long time ago, we used to go to Yaohan … a lot. Those were the days when we did not have a job and when we decide to dine out, it is to this food court. It was the cheapest and the mostest food that we could get. Yeah, those were the days way before chowtimes when food was not central in our lives — getting our money go a longer way was.

At some point we stopped going to Yaohan. The reason was parking. It is always full, especially around meal times. Getting a spot is close to impossible because there are a few cars idling on each parking lane waiting for someone to vacate a spot. It was THAT bad … and it still is.

So we often just go a couple of rounds around the car park and if we don’t find a spot, we give up. Sometimes I will drive over to President Plaza next door and park in the multi-level parking. But whatever you do, do NOT try to park in the parking lots in front of Rainflower or Canadian Tire. They are very efficient in towing away cars. Be warned!

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The name Yaohan was very famous around Asia. It was one of the biggest if not the biggest supermarket chain in Asia. But over time it fell on bad times and went out of business. It was quite a shock when it happened but I guess retail and supermarket chains comes and go every now and then.

The Yaohan Center, located north of Cambie on the No 3 Road, still retains the logo and the name. It no longer has anything to do with the long gone Yaohan. The anchor tenant today is another supermarket called Osaka. Osaka is actually owned by T&T who in turn has recently bought over by Loblaw. Yes, the Osaka Supermarket is the culprit that causes that perpetual traffic jam at the Yaohan Center.

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The other culprit for all the cars is the food court. This is a nice food court. It is bright and clean, unlike many other Asian food courts in Richmond. Other than the much newer Aberdeen Center, this is perhaps the best Asian food court there is.

I can see that it food court is well managed. The stalls are diverse enough with a lot of major Asian cuisines represented … and most of them are pretty good.

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We used to come here for the rice/noodle combo meals. It was the cheapest rice/noodle combo meals we knew of and I think to this day it is still the cheapest.

The reason is because of these three stalls side by side. These three stalls serves pretty much the same thing and they compete neck to neck with one another. The three stalls are Chun Hing Cuisine, Golden Rice Bowl and Pak Tak. Everyone who comes here regularly has their own favourite, I guess. For us, it is the one on the furthest left, Chun Hing.

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We like Chun Hing simply because their food looks the most delicious. I like the way they pile up their food very high in a mound. They have about 25 varieties to choose from, just like the other stalls.

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The prices in all three stalls are the same actually. You can choose three items ($5.99) or two items ($5.50) together with steam rice, fried rice or fried noodles. Yeah, we always go with the 3 items. I wonder how many would want to go with the two items combo when it is just 50 cents for an additional choice.

But here is a tip … you want a great deal, you must go just before 6PM. Yeah, we deliberately went at 5:45PM that day just to stake out the stall for you all. LOL! Also, we had to get a strategic table so that we can provide you visual proof of the synchronized maneuver by each of the three stalls.

You see … everyday at 6:00PM sharp, this happens at the same time … Continue reading