Updated: 21st Dec 2014; This restaurant is closed.
Update 20-Sep-2010: This is an old post. There had been a lot of changes since at Liu’s. Please follow this link to read the latest post.
I don’t know about you. For me, I always expect to see Bubble Tea, Spicy Beef Noodles … and innards that they serve as appetizers in Taiwanese restaurants. I don’t think I had ever been to one Taiwanese restaurant where they do not have at least one of these on their menu.
Jesse recommended that we go try his favourite restaurant here in Richmond. For a person who works in the food industry, I assumed that he knows what he is talking about. The restaurant he recommended was the Liu’s Taiwanese Restaurant.
Liu’s is located in Union Square in Richmond. It is actually just next to Richmond Sushi. We did not even know there is a restaurant there. You see, it is sandwiched between one of the more famous (I did not say best) sushi AYCE and a busy Chinese supermarket. Moreover, the entrance is obscure of large pillars.
Liu’s is nothing special from the inside. It was clean as expected and so no complain there. As usual, we went early as usual. There were hardly anyone there when we went in at about 11AM which is their opening time everyday. So, we got very fast service.
There were lots of milk tea choices on their menu, about 70 items altogether of various combination. Of note was the their House Special Milk Tea which is served with Whipped Cream — unique huh? The House Special Milk Tea is $3.50. Pearls are 50 cents extra.
Mmmm … they were quite good. It was sweet but not overly sweet … but certainly overly rich. I really recommend you try this but don’t fall in love with this super fatty milk tea.
Liu’s have a Special Combo section on their menu. On the surface it does look like it’s a good deal with each combo priced at $9 to $12and each having choices of two or three items. With that much food, we opted for three combos to share between the four of us.
We had taken to liking these sorts of appetizers, particularly pig intestines. These pig intestines are so pungent that we could smell them bringin to our tables. Is pungent good or bad? LOL! I have absolutely no idea but we gobbled it down real fast.
The Stewed Pig Intestines were part of the combo that also has Stewed Beef to Noodles (or to me, it is called Spicy Beef Noodles).
The Stewed Beef Noodles are just so-so … just OK. The broth is quite disappointingly clear. Real good soup here should look like this here from Lao Shan Dong (left) and No 1 Beef Noodle House (right).
It was not spicy … I just like this type of dish real spicy.
The second Combo consists of Deep Fried Pork Chop, Vermicelli Noodles and Ice Tea. The Pork Chop were well deep fried but again nothing special. I felt it was rather tasteless. The only thing I recall that was of any note is that it was crispy, that’s all.
The Vermicelli was equally bland. It was just like it was served in H2O and threw in some pickled sour cabbage for taste. It was totally tasteless and whatever little flavor came only from the cabbage. We did not finish this at all.
The third combo is just slightly better. This Combo has Noodles with Meat Sauce in Soup. It was unimaginative kind of dish. Again with plain clear broth and the only flavor here is just from the noodles.
However, this third combo came with Oyster Omelet. We love oyster omelet. While this was good but what really spoils this is the sauce they used to drench it. They should have served the sauce on the sides. Personally, I like this with just plain old fashion soya sauce, not fancy sauces.
Here in Liu’s they call it Oyster Pancake. In Malaysia it is called Oyster Omelet. I guess the reason for the name difference is that Malaysians make them with lots of eggs while Taiwanese makes them with more starch.
This third combo is the most expensive they have on the menu at $12. So, it also included Deep Fried Tofu. This dish is defined by the sauce it is served with. It was really spicy hot and we love this.
The total bill came up to $35.25 before tips. Overall, it was not as great as we expected really. There are a lot of food for sure but the quality is nothing that excites us. I don’t think we’ll visit Liu’s again, sorry to say that.
We have to give credit that service wise that they are really fast. If you dine out for the service, this place is awesome but if you come for the food, well … you know what I am going to say.
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I have been to Liu’s a couple of times when I was working in Richmond. Agreed about the beef noodle soup, nowhere near to Lao Shan Dong. But, the item I like about this place (and the one everybody usually orders) is the fried chicken meal. It has, if memory serves me right, three drumsticks, slit open in the middle so it cooks faster, with a hint of ginger and pepper. I would say the chicken has the taste/texture similar to that of chicken karaage.
classic TW oyster omelet always has the sauce on it, it’s a combination of miso, soy and ketchup. it’s not for some, but it’s always served on top. i’ve been there twice, overall, it’s not bad, but i do agree that their fried chicken is better. i think it’s a tough business, in that complex, their is also tapioca express which overlaps in food, but there is also at least 2 other taiwanese restaurants, both equally not spectacular. my wife is from taiwan, and she’s taken me to TW twice in the last 2 years and we have yet to come across a restaurant that is as good as what we can get off the streets of taiwan. the only TW restaurant that we like is Dinesty, which compares well against the Din Tai Fung in taipei.
for liu’s you need to have the deep fried chicken meal; thats what they’re primarily known for
if you like the oyster omelet you should try corner 23 on cambie and 23rd “on the corner lol”
its a taiwanese restaurant with pretty good food
omgosh! you should try their deep fried chicken there!!! its good.
The draw of Liu’s is the fried chicken leg set lunch, Ben. I used to frequent that place for just that dish but unfortunately, it has gone up in price many times since the original $5.95. I think it’s like $8.95 now or something, which is a bit much for what is essentially a fried chicken leg with some cabbage and rice. Still very good but the value is subpar to say the least.
Anyone now how to make the deep fried chicken leg sauce?
Hi PC, I’ll try to find out from friends from the community kitchens if they know how to make the deep fried chicken leg sauce. Frankly, I had not try that dish and have to idea how is the sauce like.
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Liu’s is definitely one of my favorite places for Taiwanese food and their food makes me feel @ home…plus they change their oil (for deep-frying) quite often…that’s what I like about this place the most!
Hi Buddha Girl: How do you know that Liu’s change their deep-frying oil often? Do you know the people in Liu’s or is there a way to tell? Ben
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