Jin Chuan Restaurant on Kingsway with Wessex, Burnaby

Update 28-Apr-2011: This restaurant had closed for some time already.

So I was out with the 8GTCC boys and girls. We had just gone to the Shanghai Village restaurant meeting with Chef Ming and finalizing the plans for the 8GTCC Jiangsu dinner. You know, if you think that the 8GTCC team has perks from the restaurants, you are mistaken. Even when the 8GTCC project brings recognition to the restaurant concerned, we do not get a free meal out of the restaurant at all. At best, the restaurant serves us Chinese tea. That is why I am so thankful for the sacrifices demonstrated by the team.

After we met Chef Ming, the plan was to go for a dinner at a restaurant called City Temple of Shanghai on Main Street. When we got there, it was closed! Dylan said that he checked the day before and was told they will be opened. However, when we got there, the restaurant was locked. The sign outside says that they were supposed to open that day. Strange.

Anyway, without a real Plan B, we quickly coordinated between the few cars to drive across town to Spicy Legend for hot pot on Kingsway and Joyce. After driving all the way, we found to our chagrin that we need a reservation in that restaurant. Wow. This is the first time I had seen a hole-in-the-wall eatery requiring a reservation. That restaurant is so small and can fit maybe 15 people (?). I gotta check that place out sometime.

So instead of driving to another location and forced to drop our standards, we walked down Kingsway looking for Plan C …


The Jin Chuan Restaurant looked promising. None of us noticed this restaurant before. It looked new. If I remember correctly, this is the spot where the Popular Chinese Cuisine used to be. We loved that restaurant.


Apparently, Jin Chuan is new, really new. They had just opened for five days. Interesting. We thought maybe perhaps this place would be a “find” if the food turns out great.


We noticed that their chopstick wrapper has Meishan Restaurant name printed on it. Meishan is a restaurant in Crystal Mall. The logo of Meishan and Jin Chuan is almost identical.


I like their menu. I thought it was one of the better looking ones except it would be great with a few pictures of their specialties.

If you take a close look at their prices (click above to see larger image), the lunch specials are very good too … $6 to $7. I am going to go back one of these days to try their lunch special since my office is just a short drive away.


Ordering was left to the experts. I do not know what some of the dishes are called. It’s the kind of dinner I like — no brain work involved.

I am beginning to see a pattern having dined with the 8GTCC team. It seems they like mainland Chinese food with spicy bolder dishes and exotic meat and stuff.


The spicy water boiled zebra meat was delicious. I never had this before. I was … just kidding! That picture above just reminded me of a picture of a “sensitive” dish I had seen lately.


It is water boiled fish, a classical Sichuan dish from Chongqing favorite. This is a hot dish as you can well imagine. For mere mortals, they will just pick the freshwater fish and drip dry the fish before eating it. For the 8GTCC immortals, we drink also the “water”.


The above is the Chinese equivalent of bacon. I am not really a fan of this but I know most on the team digs this. I just did not like the texture as much but no complains whatsoever on the taste. He he he … I like the green onions AND the chili. I eat them with rice … just rice, green onions and chili … delicious!

See that layer of fat? Now, I am just thinking … Many of Chinese dishes does look very unhealthy. There are layers of meat fat, lots of deep frying, gallons of cooking oil used, eating skins and all. Even in most of the pictures here you see a gleaming film of oil on every morsels. What are your thoughts on this? Do you stay away from such food?

Well, I don’t. It’s everything in moderation, I guess that is what I am trying to say. You know, I think this is no different from having a Big Mac.


If I remember correctly, the above is deep fried chicken with crispy rice.


I don’t even remember what this one is. It does look appetizing to me.


Pea shoots. This looked very simple to make. I asked Suanne to make this at home but she said she doesn’t know what they used. She thinks it is some broth used or something. Does anyone know?


Not many people like pork stomach but I like it. I like the chewiness of the pork stomach. My mum makes great pork stomach and pepper soup. I could eat just the pork stomach soup with steamed rice and that would make me real satisfied meal. You know, I don’t even think about what the pork stomach is in contact with.

Now, pork intestines is another thing. That I got to be more careful. LOL!


I did not care much about the deep fried pastries to tell the truth.


The Yanjing beer is cheap in Jin Chuan. It was just 4 bottles for $10.


The bill came to just over $100 before tips. We had 7 people. So I think Jin Chuan’s food is rather cheap. The most expensive item is the water boiled zebra hot pot which is $26 (was seeing if you are still paying attention).

So is this restaurant a “find”? For me … no. The food here is pretty good and the prices are good too. It is just that with so many great Chinese restaurants in Metro Vancouver, Jin Chuan just doesn’t stand out with any one particular dish.

Jin Chuan on Urbanspoon

This Post Has 0 Comments

  1. Jonnek

    Im sweating from the spicy heat just by looking at the pictures. The food looks good but unfortunately I just can’t tolerate the heat. I need to build up my tolerance.

    1. Marike

      Same here!

  2. Shirl

    That’s why you drink tea when you eat Chinese, to cut the grease. People new to dim sum don’t drink enough tea and end up getting sick.

    By the way, if you take a vitamin e capsule before eating spicy food it buffers your stomach and other bits :).

    I don’t know think that its a total fair review of the restaurant if you didn’t order the dishes. You didn’t mention the service which seems to range from horrible to exemplary in Asian places. Also, a good restaurant with good prices is still nothing to poo-poo at.

    And on that note, you should google Modern Toilet!

  3. Shmoo

    We have only eaten at City Temple of Shanghai one time so far, but I’m afraid it was not particularly memorable at all. (We even had a friend who knows Shanghai cuisine do the ordering.)

    Now, I do not have the background to say whether Jin Chuan is any stronger a representative of Sichuan cuisine than City Temple is of Shanghai cuisine, but I can say that your photos look absolutely delicious and I am hungry for chinese bacon and water boiled zebra now. 🙂

  4. Jeff

    Can’t believe Popular is gone! They had some of the best XLB in the city. Does anyone know if they’re going to open up somewhere else?

    1. Ben

      Hi Jeff: I went to Mei Shan (the “parent restaurant” of Jin Chuan for lunch today. I saw a few awards at Mei Shan pinned on the wall. The chef was awarded gold for some international Chinese cuisine competition in Beijing. From the pictures it seems like some fancy competition. Ben

  5. I wanted to like this restaurant because the owner seems so eager to please. The food is not bad, but it wasn’t particularly good either, so I doubt I’d return any time soon. They have been open for only 5 days when we ate, so perhaps that might have been a factor. Teething problems, maybe.

  6. fmed

    I didn’t clue in till now that this was the site of Popular.

    Yeah – the food was alright – nothing mind blowing. I too didn’t feel the compulsion to return soon. (The pork stomach was good, though.)

  7. DylanK

    Yeah, Jin Chuan… it didn’t disappoint or amaze me, and I’ll probably check it out again.

    — Unidentified dish with cilantro is suànní báiròu 蒜泥白肉, which is just cold boiled pork with garlic puree, but there are lots of versions of it out there. It’s on the receipt, with your thumb pointing to it.

    — That same night, I ate waterboiled fish at Nine Dishes, too. Ten dollars cheaper, and I like it better. Yanjing is fifty cents cheaper a bottle, too. Sorry, I love that place.

    1. Ben

      We were there at Nine Dishes last night. It is amazing like you said it is.

      1. Jonnek

        I heard a lot of good things about Nine Dishes from the Chowhound forum. I’ll be looking forward to your posts on Nine Dishes. Apparently Dylan likes this restaurant so much that he spends more time in it than his home. LOL.

        1. LotusRapper

          Dylan may end up buying the place 😀

      2. LotusRapper

        Excellent, Ben.

        We were there two Thursdays ago. Got a good feel for what to order next time. Overall it was good, definitely a refreshing change for local Chinese fare.

  8. Ben, maybe you could organize a dinner there some time. I’ve been trying to go but can’t gt a critical mass of diners. TS also doesn’t like offal, so if we were to go, my hands are tied: can’t order any of the offal dishes. 🙂

    1. fmed


      Feel free to set something up on vanchow. (I can set it up if you wish).


      1. Ben

        Hi fmed:
        Good idea. Why don’t you set it up on vanchow? I would love to join you all in a chowdown in 9 Dishes. Suanne and I only had a few small items as a snack and we told ourselves we would want to go back one day.

        1. Yes, yes, yes, please organize something. . .I’m shy still, seems like a big step to organize something on Vanchow. 🙂

          1. LotusRapper

            I’m down for a chowdown at 9 Dishes …. will need some advanced notice, and Wednesday nights are always out for me.

  9. Pinoy Gourmet

    Ben about the zebra joke,I tried it years ago in South Africa,It is tough and stringy,very gamey and defenitely not worth eating unless you have nothing else to eat.They have to boil it or cook it for a while to tenderize it.Same for Wildebeast,Very tough and stringy.But Antelope is ok,It tastes like deer and Ostrich,which is the best of the lot btw all of these were from commercial game farms.Not from the wild.

  10. Shmoo

    Hi Ben,

    Was Jin Chuan located where Luckynoodle is now? If so, it might be worth adding an update note at the top of this post.

    Too bad… the photos look tasty.

    1. Ben

      Hi Shmoo: I think Jin Chuan is located next door to Luckynoodles, if I am not mistaken. But anyway, Jin Chuan is now closed. Thanks for letting me know. I had updated the post. Ben

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