Updated: 4th July 2012; This restaurant had closed according to Urbanspoon.com.
Come to think of it, we had never quite cared about Wonton Noodles.
We love noodles as you can see. We had been blogging about noodles a lot of late. It is because we gravitate towards anything with hot soup during the colder seasons. We had our fair share of Japanese Ramen, Taiwanese Beef Noodles, Malaysian Laksa, Vietnamese Pho but we don’t go out of our way for a bowl of Wonton Noodles.
The name Nancy Wonton House had popped up in two separate occasions the past two weeks. That triggered that thought why we rarely go eat wonton. Although wontons are very much Chinese, perhaps it is because I subconsciously associate wontons with faux Chinese fare.
Since Suanne and I was around the neighborhood of Victoria Drive and 37th Ave, we decided to go check it out. Frankly, we were not hungry at all but we went nevertheless … before this place recess to the back of our distant memory again.
Nancy Wonton House is an old school Cantonese restaurant from umpteen years ago — God knows how long. You don’t find many of these type of restaurants opening anymore. Cantonese restaurants sprouted in Vancouver prior to the days of 1997 before Hongkong was returned to China. The wave of of Cantonese speaking HK immigrants brought along with them a lot of Cantonese restaurants.
As the fears of a Communist China administered HK dissipated over the years, a lot of HK immigrants returned. In the past few years, Chinese immigrants are dominated by those from Mainland China. This new wave of immigrants brought along another genre of Chinese cuisine, mainly influenced by the cuisine from Shanghai and Beijing.
So Nancy Wonton does show its age. The decor is so much like it was when it first opened a decade or two ago. Some things never changes.
The dining area is large. Accentuated by the mirrors on one side of the restaurant, it even looked larger than it actually is. The table sizes are larger with booths along the side that can seat six and round tables that can easily fit ten. It is very much a neighborhood restaurant where extended family with kids and grand parents comes over for dinner.
We did not even spend much time scanning their menu. The menu is huge. The dishes are numbered and at a glance we can see that they have almost 300 different items on it. We already know what we wanted — wonton noodles.
The food in Nancy Wonton is known for its cheap prices. The noodles above is less than … $5.
When it was brought to the table, it looked like it’s just a bowl of noodles with soup. No wonton was in sight — but they were all buried underneath the noodles. We thought it kind of strange because we had always been used to having it presented with wonton topping the noodles.
The yellow noodles are good. We could detect that hint of lye water that is common to these type of noodles. It wasn’t as strong as some that I had tasted. Some people hates it but I expect it … even liked it. LOL!
The wontons are pretty good too — for the price that is. There were five rather large ones. Some people were telling me that Nancy’s wontons are huge, like a toddler’s fist but it was not that big. I had bigger ones than these here.
What I like best is the thinness of the wrapper used to wrap the wontons. They are soft and thin. We had prawns wonton.
We also ordered another of their specialty dishes, congee. There are almost 30 items on the congee section alone, ranging from kidney, liver, pork blood, and stomach to BBQ duck, chicken, clams, prawns, and scallops. You name it, they have it. All these are priced from just $4.50 with the most expensive one at only $6.85 (scallop).
The one we opted for is called the Assorted Pork Congee which is $4.50.
At that price, one would perhaps accept if it is largely congee with a little bit of ingredients. But no … the bowl is full of it … the pork innards with peanuts and green onions. The congee is smooth with that perfect consistency.
The innards included pork liver, pork balls, pork stomach and kidney. Suanne does not touch the liver and kidney. That is left to me. I like these stuff but frankly, these ones does not taste as good. I guess the congee was not hot enough to cook them a bit more thoroughly.
These two items came up to only $9.75. Real cheap right? There are not many places that can beat Nancy Wonton House for price.
Nancy opens late and closes at 2AM and they accept cash only.
Here is the scanned images of their takeout menu. Click on them to enlarge.
This Post Has 15 Comments
I really love your blog! I check it everyday; it’s just routine now, lol. All the pictures of yummy looking food always make me wanna grab something to eat. Thanks for taking the time to update and everything!
BTW, did you mean to say that Nancy Wonton House opens late till 2AM? lol Thanks again!
LOL! Thanks for proof reading this for me. BTW, glad you enjoy reading chowtimes.
I’ve eaten here a couple times. I unabashedly adore this kind of oldschool Cantonese stuff. There are few things in the world as good as a lemon Coke and a big plate of beef brisket on rice.
Mmmm, the congee and the WT noodles look great. Not many of these places left in town, you are right ! Off the top of my head I can think of only places like:
– Congee Noodle House (E. Broadway/Quebec, Kingsway/Joyce)
– Kwong Chow (Main/16)
– Ho Tak Kee (Broadway/Kingsway … recently burned down)
– Penny’s and On Lok (E. Hastings/Victoria)
Must go try Nancy’s one day soon !
Like previous posters may have mentioned to you already, but checking your blog has been a daily routine for me. Whenever I can’t think of a place to go for a meal with my gf, I check this site!
Also, for my trip to Vegas, I also checked your old posts as a reference base! All in all, keep up the good work!
PS: What HK Chai Chan Teng do you recommend? I’ve been having cravings for them lately
Hi Tony C:
A recent one we went to which we like a lot is Copa Cafe. I think you will like it too. After all, they won the award for best HK CCT recently. Check this: http://chowtimes.com/2009/12/29/copa-cafe-on-cambie-and-w-23rd-vancouver/
If you would like to try good wonton noodle, maybe you should pay a visit to Mc Noodle ( pretty sure thats what it’s called though so many times in the past I accidently called it Mek Noodle) on Alexandra in Richmond. It is located in the back of the plaza across from JangMo Jib if that helps you with direction.
Their wonton noodle is by far the best one I’ve ever tried here in Vancouver and perhaps even outside of Hongkong.
I like how the portion is small but the quality is consistent and their noodle..mmm..simply divine!
We went to Mc Noodle back in those days when it was called Mak’s Noodles (see http://chowtimes.com/2008/04/15/maks-noodle-restaurant-in-richmond/). I know there is a story behind the change in name and am sure one of our readers will know … like FMED? He knows everything about the going ons in the restaurants.
Haha. Nope not this time. I have no idea why they changed their name. It’s pretty stupid though. Mak’s is a long established name in HK and Chinese people from all over North America come to Mak’s in Richmond because of this connection.
Let’s hope it is not an ownership change which may result in a lower quality product.
authentic wonton noodles are served in small bowls with the wontons underneath the noodle, resting on the spoon =)
Hi Jacqui: I was answering Kiki’s question and saw that picture where the wontons are served on top of the noodles in Mc Noodles (http://chowtimes.com/2008/04/15/maks-noodle-restaurant-in-richmond/). So out of curiosity I also checked the pictures from Tsim Chai Noodles (http://chowtimes.com/2007/11/09/tsim-chai-noodles-in-richmond/) and they serve the wontons on top too. Really … not that it matters to me where it is served. It was just one of those odd observations that make every now and then. 🙂
Finally!!! I love the wontons, dumplings and the congee here. It’s part of my regular stop after the dentist or for late night eats. 🙂
Mmm…so close to my neighbourhood. I must go try soon too!
Anybody been to McKim Wonton Mein Saga on Kingsway near Earles ?
Hilarious how the “Saga” part of their English name came from a poor phonetic translation of their Cantonese name which loosely translates to “world family” 😀
I happened to come across this old post on wonton noodles and read the comments with interest. Of course, Nancy Wonton house has been closed for sometime now and in its place is Sandy La Chinese restaurant which only opens in the evenings. Food is good so far and the restaurant is always packed.
About Mc Noodles and the change of name from Mak’s Noodles, the current owners were partners with the original HK Mak’s Noodles when they first started in Richmond. Eventually, the original owner moved on to open his Mckim Wonton Mein Saga on Mckim Rd, Richmond. I believe it took him a long process to get the rights to the original Mak’s Noodles name back. He subsequently sold his Mckim business and went on to open Michigan, also in Richmond by Alderbridge. The new owners of Mckim subsequently opened the Kingsway branch.
That’s the history of the original Mak’s Noodles operation in Canada. In HK, they operate several branches under the “Mak” family name such as Mak Un Kee and Mak Man Kee. BTW in HK, the wontons are served beneath the noodles. Regardless how they serve their wonton noodles, I still think the current Mc Noodles’ is the best in Vancouver and it was unfortunate that they had to close the Cambie/Broadway branch some years ago.