Jing Long Fang: Cheaper Than Food Court, Over 75 Dishes, All $4.99

Updated 9th Oct 2014; This restaurant is closed.

Cheapskate Alert!

Driving along Garden City about two weeks ago, I noticed a sign outside a quiet strip mall. It was bright yellow and all the Chinese. I knew this place used to be a really quiet bubble tea house called Iced Cafe. We never bothered visiting Iced Cafe because we were not really that much interested in bubble tea and stuff.


The moment I saw that I swung into the carpark to have a closer look. I like checking out new restaurants.


It was this sign that caught my eyes. I can’t really read Chinese but I sure can read  $4.99/lb … and that price was over the picture of a crab dish. That was ridiculously low, I thought. I am not sure if you could even buy frozen crabs at this price from the supermarket, let alone have it cooked and served in a restaurant.

Although I knew that this is just a … loss leader to get people into the restaurant and most likely for dinner only, I went in nevertheless to check it out.

Can someone help translate the entire sign above for us all?


From the outside, this place is totally different. It used to look modernish when it was Iced Cafe. Now it looked very traditional Chinese restaurant.

Although the Chinese name had changed a little, they told us they did not bother to change the English name. It is still called Iced Cafe. However, they added one character to the Chinese name and is now known as Jing Long Fang.

I went to this restaurant alone in the first visit. I was pleasantly surprised at this place that I decided to come back again bringing along Suanne to try it.


What blew my mind was their menu. Specifically, their lunch menu. Almost every item is below $5.00. It is mind boggling because at these prices they are even cheaper than the dishes you get in food court. I wonder how they make money at these prices but am not complaining. No siree.

Click on the menu pages above and you will see what I mean. Many of the dishes are pretty good ones and it is varied.

Take a look at the menu page on the left. They have 13 different types of congee and are between $4.00 and $5.00. What I like best is the page on the right. Every items (about 60 dishes) on that page is $4.99 only!

We checked. This lunch menu is available from 11:00 AM to 3:30 PM everyday, including weekends. At first I thought that perhaps they have this ridiculously low priced for the slower weekdays only.

Actually, their appetizers are more expensive than their main dishes. Strange, huh?


And at those prices you would think that this place is some run down place. They actually look very nice with comfortable plush chair. We figure this was what was left from the Iced Cafe days.

We went to this restaurant on a Friday afternoon. Office workers tend to eat out on Friday afternoon but this place was virtually empty. It felt strange given the large space they have (easily fit in 80-90 people). There was one table of middle age couple and another table of two young office workers.

English is a problem here. The older waitress does not speak English but she was friendly and helpful.

The moment we sat down she asked what type of tea we wanted. This is another pleasant thing here. For dishes this cheap, you would have thought they would serve cheap tea. Instead they gave us options like you see in dim sum places. The beauty of it is that this is free tea. No charge at all. Granted that they are not premium quality ones but still.

How can one not want to root for a place like this? OK, even though I also do think that this is not sustainable in the long run.


Suanne decided to get the Slice Tender Beef Noodle in Soup which is $4.75. Our mind was thinking of the Taiwanese Beef Noodle style and never thought of asking. What was served was not a TBN.

Granted that at this price, their serving is smaller than other places serving regular prices. Being small lunch eaters, to us this is just the perfect size (and price). I so wish we have a place like this near my place of work.

Actually, the noodles was quite flavourful. They have a respectable amount of beef slices too.


The noodles used are the usual wonton noodle type. There is also mustard green which has a hint of bitterness. This is a good $4.75 bowl of noodles.


On my first trip alone, I ordered the Beef & Egg Swirl On Steam Rice ($4.99). I like it so much that I ordered this again the second time round. This was the dish that the waitress recommended me the first time I was here when I asked her what is the most asked for dish. It was hard to choose from the list of sixty $4.99 dishes.

While we were there, we saw another table also having this one.


It is moist and eggy. To me it is sort of like one of the best combination of “Jhup and Rice”. Actually this dish is the rice version of the “what darn hor”.

I think I’ll order this again the next time. Just pure comfort food!


We felt too cheapskate ordering less than $10 for the two of us. So we thought we also order an appetizer. As earlier mentioned, their appetizers are more expensive but really they are not overprices.

Since it was the spot prawns season, prawns is on top of our mind. So we ordered the Marinated Chilled Prawn in Chili Oil ($6.98). These are NOT spot prawns but these are really good prawns. They are reasonably sized for the price and the serving is a lot.

Sucking every drop of the jhup is definitely the best part of eating this. It created a bit of a splatter peeling the shells and all.


I think this is one place worth checking out. Just go and see how cheap they are. The food is pretty decent and the ambiance is great (certainly beats any food court!).

I think this is not sustainable in the long run and given the number of people we saw in this restaurant, they sure have problems getting the word out that they are there. After all they are a bit of the way from No 3 Road and Alexandra Road.

錦龍坊 Iced Cafe seafood restaurant on UrbanspoonBUSINESS HOUR

Wednesday to Sunday: 11:00AM to 3:30PM; 5:00PM to 11:30PM
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This Post Has 23 Comments

  1. LotusRapper

    Wow, food court prices at resto quality 🙂

    Were the portions reduced to reflect the pricing ?

    1. Ben

      Hi LotusRapper: Yes, the portions were smaller than other places serving similar serving. Take another look at this picture below. I would say it is about 1/2 to 2/3rd of the normal servings in other places:

      1. LotusRapper

        I’ve always been amused how the HK-style cafes with their mini meal sets (usually off-peak times) can spend the effort to make 1/2-sized portions when it’s more efficient (effort & energy-wise) to make full portions a la carte.

      2. Shmoo

        Actually, I’d be okay if a few places in Vancouver had success selling smaller portions for smaller prices. One thing I was struck by on our recent trip to Taiwan is how many quick foods there are sort of “snack sized”. Gives the buyer a bit more control over portion — buy one item for a snack, multiple items for a full meal, that sort of thing. 🙂

        1. Ben

          Hi Shmoo:

          Yup. Every Asian coming to Canada for the first time will find the smallest of Canadian food serving very large. It was our experience that way too when we first landed in Canada — pleasantly surprised with the huge bowls of noodles and the fried rice that is enough to feed two or three people. The downside is that you tend to eat lesser variety. I thought this is because in Canada, the ingredients are cheap but labour is high. So, it is more economical to serve larger dishes (and charge higher prices). Does that make sense? LOL! Maybe not! Anyway, I am all for smaller portions (with cheaper prices) anytime — not only is it cheaper, it helps me with my weight too!


          1. Shmoo

            Hey Ben,

            Actually, that makes a lot of sense to me about the cost of labour vs. the cost of ingredients. I never thought about it that way. In a similar vein, you could argue that our lower population density means fewer total customers and so the value of each customer much be optimized.

            Until you mentioned the relative cost of labour, I always just chalked up the portions to North America’s lamentable “more is always better” approach to life. (Because the big portions are even more exagerated in the USA, and still very noticeable in Canada as well, but are not as prevalent in Europe.)

          2. LotusRapper

            Portion sizes are quite directly linked to over-eating. And if the food being consumed is highly caloric/fat, there’s gonna be problems !

          3. TimeToChow

            LotusRapper, you promised you’d never post this pic of the two us, ‘back in the days’. 😛

          4. LotusRapper

            Oh but we were both so handsome, weren’t we ? 😉

  2. Joyluckclub

    wow….nice find Ben!
    I love a lunch bargain. Will definitely check them out.

  3. SteveB

    heh, you had me at Cheapskate Alert!
    I will check it out soon.

    1. Ben

      Check. SteveB is another cheapskate like me.

  4. HR

    left sign says: “Signature Frangrant Spicy Crab $4.99/lb”
    right sign says: “Jin Long Fong, Frangrant Spicy Crab (picture), swimming (live) crab – shocking price $3.99/lb (i think they forgot to update this price should be 4.99 i guess)”

    1. Ben

      Hi HR: Thanks for the translations. Wow, “swimming” crabs for that price? I actually assumed that the catch would be that the crab are frozen. We actually also asked for their dinner menu to check their prices. We were also thinking that at the price of crabs like that, they would overcharge on their other dishes. You know, like $18 for a dish of kai lan with garlic, that sort of thing. But actually the prices are quite in line with normal prices. I hope someone would just go for their dinner and crab and report back with their review. (We will not likely go back again given the long list of places we have yet to try). Ben

  5. liz

    The orders look like they are served on salad plate sized dishes. That would be great for Chinese tapas and we like to share and try everything. The egg & beef is a favourite in our house and will have to go get some of that!
    And I was just at Rice World up the street. If only I knew…..

  6. Oliver

    Went there today. We had soup noodles with BBQ duck. They served the BBQ duck on a plate separate from the soup noodles which is great and the duck was really fresh, still warm with crispy skin. All for $4.50 and the place is not busy!

    Also had the spice and salt deep fried fish pieces which is also good.

    Don’t understand why places offering great prices and good surroundings are not busy.

    As Ben said, this place is not going to last if they don’t get busier at prices like this.

    1. Ben

      Thanks for the report, Oliver. You know, I was thinking about this place today. I was thinking that besides putting the word out that they are there, I don’t think it will make a difference. There might be a bit of increase of awareness of this place for a short while like a week or two and then it will likely fall back into the same rut. I don’t know … somehow I think that ridiculously low prices might not work in their favour. They are setting unrealistic and unsustainable expectations. For those of the readers who will take the trouble to go check them out, I would love to hear of what you think. Ben

  7. Cecilia

    I lunched there more than 5 times, both weekdays and weekends, they were never busy, at most 6 tables. Their food is good but a little greasy, yes portion is small, but for $4.99, what do you expect.

    1. Ben

      Hi Cecilia: So you can be considered one of their regulars then. What do you usually order? What is good there? Ben

  8. ChristineT

    Wow, I started to drool when I saw the picture of the rice dish. I’d rather have a noodle dish, but I wouldn’t hesitate to eat the jhup with rice.

  9. Ryan

    Hey ben,

    Just dining at this restaurant for a saturday lunch. Just want to say it is fantastic. Great find.

    The salted fried rice is one of the best I’ve had, and at the prices I’m paying,,no one even comes close. I think your kids would really like it. Lots of chunks of fish, rice is very nice texture.

  10. Dyosah

    This restaurant is now closed. Tried to eat there today at lunch time and it was closed. The posters outdoor are gone too.

    1. Ben

      Oh too bad. Well, it was definitely not sustainable at the prices they were selling their food at. Anyway I think too that the location is definitely not ideal for a restaurant because it was somewhat hidden. Ben

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