Update 07-Apr-2011: Please note that this review is from Jul-2008. We have a newer review of this same restaurant in Apr-2011. Here is the link to the newer blog post: http://chowtimes.wordpress.com/2011/04/06/the-place-on-granville-vancouver/
The other day, a foodie friend commented about this place called “The Place” where he claims that they have the best spicy beef noodle soup, we simply had to check it out for ourselves.
The Place is located at about 63rd on Granville in the southern part of Vancouver. It is such a nondescript place that most people would not have noticed it let alone giving it a second glance. But I tell you … it’s a gem of a place.
The Place is a no-frill smallish Chinese restaurant. I don’t know how to categorize it … maybe the best way to describe it is it’s Mainland Chinese restaurant. They serve both Shanghai and Sichuan dishes.
Service is excellent and I like the sweet and polite server which sometimes I find so wanting in many such restaurants. She was so helpful in helping us choose the dishes as we could not read Chinese. Although there were English translations on the menu, it does not do justice to the type of dishes they have.
The Place have very unique dishes and does seem very authentic. The server recommended the Family Hot Pot (Chien Gar Fook in Cantonese). It was great. It is a clear and flavourful broth with lots of stuff in it … fishballs, vermicelli, sliced pork, and suey choy. They also have stuffed bean curd skin and egg wrapped minced pork. This is so good and excellent with rice — a real comfort food.
It came in a large pot that is more than enough for the four of us. Although it’s pricey at $13.25, it is worth it. You should try this.
The second dish recommended was the Boiled Spicy Fish. It is a Sichuan style “Sui Gee Yee” — very, very spicy — very, very nice. It is a big serving of fish filet with bean sprouts. Suanne said that it is too salty for her. I can’t say it’s salty for me as I was just dealing with the heat of this really spicy dish.
This dish costs $13.25. You should order this if you like spicy Sichuan food. It has a thick film of oil which may put some people off.
The Braised Pork Hand came served in a wooden bucket. This is a Shanghainese dish, I believe. The sauce at the bottom of the bucket is sweet and one must never waste this … it is very good with plain rice. It’s so good I could just eat rice with the sweet sauce alone as a meal.
Again, this is not exactly very healthy food. The best part of the meat is the thick fat layer of skin. Yummy.
For $47, including taxes and tips, I find this value for money. There were so much food left over we had them to go — we have enough left over for lunch the next day. BTW, they only accepts cash.
I like The Place and will definitely go back again to check out their other dishes. I know they are not very healthy food but they are really delish. I highly recommend this place. You MUST go.