5 Loaves 2 Fish Restaurant on Garden City Road and Blundell Road

I met up with Lorna for lunch on a week day. Initially, we intended to eat at Kiriri on Garden City Road. Unfortunately, the restaurant was closed for 10 days.


So, we cross the road to look for another place to have lunch. We decided to try the above new 5 Loaves 2 Fish Restaurant; a Northern Chinese cuisine restaurant. A while ago, Ben and I did notice this new restaurant. But a glance at their take out menu, it looks more like a chopsuey restaurant.

5 Loaves 2 Fish Chopsuey Menu (1)5 Loaves 2 Fish Chopsuey Menu (2)5 Loaves 2 Fish Chopsuey Menu (3)

You can click on the menu to have a larger view.


The restaurant was quiet when we arrived; just one table was occupied. A while later, a few more customers walked in.


After browsing through the menu for a while, we could not make up our mind of what to order. So, we asked the server for recommendation for their Northern Chinese specialties. She recommended the above Stir Fried Potatoes, Eggplants & Green Peppers. It was $9.99. Other than a bit oily, it was pretty good; the sauce was flavourful and great with steamed rice. (more…)

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Perfect Taste Restaurant in Crystal Mall, Burnaby

Ben and I were in the Crystal Mall looking for lunch options.


We decided to try the Perfect Taste Restaurant which located outside the mall.


The Chinese name of the restaurant indicates that it is of northern eastern Chinese cuisine. The dishes come with free rice.


The restaurant was empty when we were there on a Friday afternoon.


We ordered a couple of dishes since it’s just the two of us. The first dish is a stir fried potatoes, egg plant and green pepper. When the dish arrived, we can smelled the fragrance of bean sauce. (more…)

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Northern Chinese Countryside Restaurant on 4200 No. 3 Road

Nanzaro and I went out for lunch and groceries shopping on a Saturday. We decided to try the fairly new Northern Chinese Countryside Restaurant on No. 3 Road and Browngate Road.


The server/owner told me that this restaurant had opened for six months.


The restaurant name in Chinese says that this is a noodle shop. It’s menu is more than just noodle but ranges from cold dishes, side dishes, hot pot, meat dishes, snacks and soup.


You can click on the menu to have a larger view.


I ordered one of their house special dishes, A Pot of Incense. It is $8.99. I asked the server if this comes with rice. He replied that it comes with corn cake and fried bread. The fried bread (thinner ones) was very crunchy while the corn cake was more doughy. (more…)

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[CRA 2010 Signature Dish] Lamb & Hand-pulled Noodles in Soup 羊肉湯拉麵 from Legendary Noodles

Updated: 4th July 2012; This restaurant had closed according to Urbanspoon.com.

On one hand, I wanted to like Legendary Noodles because it is supposed to be a well-established and well-respected restaurant. But truth be told, there are a lot of things that leaves much to be desired with Legendary Noodle — at least with the restaurant we went to. They do some things well, but it is what they failed in that makes us not wanted to go back again.


There are two Legendary Noodle locations in Metro Vancouver. There is one on Main Street and another one on Denman.

There used to be one in Richmond but that closed some years ago. The Legendary Noodle in Richmond was one of the early posts on chowtimes. I remember that it was the first restaurant where we picked the courage to ask the chef to pull the noodles for us so that we can put an interesting angle to the post. He he he … asking them for permission to take pictures scared us then because we were such noobs then. Today, we have thicker skin.

The Legendary Noodle location we went to was the one located on Main Street at the intersection with King Edward.


The decor in Legendary Noodle can be described as tacky … especially the beaded curtains and the wooden paper lantern. It is obvious that they are trying to portray themselves as Oriental in the eyes of the western world. It doesn’t really bother me but it is really in your face.

What really spoil our experience in Legendary Noodle is the service. Mind you, Suanne and I are not demanding customers. I must say that we interact with restaurant staff really well and we are respectful people. Well, the moment we sat down, the young waitress had the sour face like we had just offended her by coming into the restaurant. OK, we shrugged it off while we looked at the menu. When she came back, the same sour face came along. Suanne described her as being very “fu hei” (in Cantonese). We would have understood if the waitress did not smile but giving us that irritated look is what I could not have understood.

OK, to put things in proper perspective, there could be a reason behind this and might not be the same to other customers. But really, I was quite annoyed. No, we did not leave then and there. It is because we were not used to storming out to make a point.

Service aside, the tables are small. It is sized for bowls of noodles and nothing more. It is just that we had to keep the camera and notebook on our lap. We do realize that restaurants are not designed for bloggers. That is beside the point in case someone wants to rebut me on this point for thrashing Legendary Noodle for the rude service. 🙂 Bottom line, the tables were not big.


You may click on the menu above to show a larger image. They use Mandarin names like Dao Xiao Mian, Gan Ban Mian, Tang Mian, etc. A lot of the items are vegetarian and they are clearly marked on the menu.

The menu is just a 1-pager. The prices were cheap with the noodles costing $7 – $8.

Chinese Restaurant Award 2010 ♦ GOLD in the NORTHERN NOODLES Category ♦ Lamb & Hand-pulled Noodles in Soup 羊肉湯拉麵

The gold award winning dish is known as the Lamb Shanks Noodle Soup on their menu. It came in two sizes — small for $7 and just $1 more for the large one. We opted for the small bowl even though we were tempted to get more value with the bigger serving. No, we had been eating way too much already and decided that discipline is in order.

The serving is small. For us who just wanted to taste it, it is just right. If you are hungry, you’ll need the larger serving.

The broth is not bad actually. It is on the light side but sufficiently … (more…)

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ShaoLin Noodle House on Broadway and Cambie, Vancouver

Updated 18th Nov 2014; The restaurant had changed it’s name from Sha Lin to Shaolin according to Urbanspoon.com.

It was another one of those days when we had to send the boys to their Olympic Ceremony practices. We had given up trying to get any info from them. Our fear is that we will NOT be able to watch it on TV on the day of because we could end up having to wait to pick them up after the Olympic closes. We’ll see.

Oh talking about the Olympic Ceremony, the response to the Olympic Opening Ceremony Dress Rehearsal give away had been overwhelming. So far we have over 230 responses after 2 days. Just a reminder that we will cut off all entries at 12:01AM this Thursday.


This time we went to Sha Lin Noodle House for a late lunch after the boys practices. Sha Lin is on Broadway near the intersection with Cambie. If you want to come here the next few weeks, you should know that Broadway is designated as an Olympic lane — and that means no more street parking. The best way is to take the SkyTrain and get off at the Broadway/City Hall station.


Sha Lin Noodle House had always been a very popular eatery. The main draw is the good authentic Chinese food and the prices. They had been operating here for a long time already — at least 10 years old.

Many customers will stand and gawk at the poster at the entrance of their popular dishes before going in. We did. All of them looked delicious. Makes us want to get all of them.


Don’t expect much from Sha Lin. The place is rather spartan and does shows its age. The place was full even when we were there after lunch hours at 2PM.

Service here is bad — really bad. Most of the waiters and waitresses have really bad attitude and walk/talk so listlessly. Youngsters! It is like they hate their job, their life or something. If not for the great service of that lone tall slim waiter who tried his best to placate us, we would have left.

This is the kind of place that had success gone to their heads. They have so many customers that they can’t handle, they seem to think that they don’t mind losing customers. This is sad because their food is pretty good. I hate to say this but we like the food for the most part.


For starters we ordered the Sliced Rolls (fried). This is just $2.95. I recommend you order this.

The fried rolls is served with condensed milk as a dip. So it is a very sweet dish. The deep fried bread dough was just perfect — crispy outside, soft inside.

We know that our boys will like it but they will always instinctively reject anything we order for them. Especially Nanzaro, who will put up an act when we asked him to try other food. He will put both his hands over his mouth and make it look like he is going to throw up. He is very convincing in doing this but not to us. He had been doing this ever since he is a toddler and is now a habit.


We normally let them be but this time we were extra assertive that they must try a piece. Guess what? They loved it.

Arkensen said it tasted like donuts. I never thought of it that way before but he is right. And Nanzaro? He flashed me a thumbs up and said “You rock, Dad”.

See? Dad knows best when it comes to food. Nanzaro knows that but he just doesn’t want to give his dad the credit he deserved.


We also ordered 2 sticks of Kabob to share. They were cumin flavoured and were very spicy — we asked for the hottest they can make it.

The meat was a bit dry and tough but it was OK. It took a bit of chewing to down them but it was the whole point because you really can taste the full flavour of the kabob.


Sha Lin is well know for their hand made noodles. They classify them as dragging, cutting, rolling and pushing noodles.

Arkensen ordered the most common type, the dragging noodles. The one he had came with beef and bean sprout in soup which is $7.


Served on the side is a plate of … (more…)

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Peaceful Restaurant on West Broadway at Cambie, Vancouver

In Vancouver, there are Chinese restaurants and there are Chinese restaurants.

There are Chinese restaurants where you will only see Chinese customers. The sight of a Caucasian customer is rare. The real menu of these restaurants are in Chinese. They will have a token English menu which is a small subset of their real menu. Their waitresses can hardly speak English but they can really speak Mandarin in very heavy accent. They serve traditional and authentic Chinese food.

Then there are the other Chinese Restaurant which are more user-friendly to the western customers. You see quite a number of Caucasian customers. They have items like sweet and sour pork and chow mein on their menu. They give out fortune cookies with the check. The Chinese foodie crowd does not pay attention to these type of restaurants. They say these restaurants is not real Chinese restaurants.

You know what I am saying?


But there is one restaurant that has managed to serve authentic Chinese food and yet draw customers who are non-Chinese.

We went to the Peaceful Restaurant before we drop the boys off for one of their many top secret rehearsals. So we went to a restaurant nearby. Peaceful Restaurant is located on Broadway.


The Peaceful Restaurant is a small restaurant. It is long and narrow with a row of tables lining one side of the wall and a glass enclosed open kitchen on the other side. There is a couple of larger round tables for larger parties.

Round tables … hmmm. I am thinking hard here as I type. In all good Chinese restaurants, the dining tables are round and will seat 10 people a table. This is because Chinese food are meant to be shared and are served communal style. Also, round tables allows everyone to be able to talk to each other better.

I can’t think of any other cultures that predominantly uses round tables. Can you help me think of one that does?

Anyway, the Peaceful Restaurant is a Northern Chinese restaurant. The speaks Mandarin with a heavy northern Chinese accent.


We ordered the Sichuan Dan Dan Noodles (hmmm … Sichuan is western, not northern China!) because we heard that they pull the noodles in house.

It came in a bowl nicely arranged with the ingredients and before I could lift my camera to take a picture of it, the waitress dug in a pair of scissors and went ahead to cut it up. She then mixes it up front of us.

Aw too bad. I wanted to see how long these noodles are. Seeing how these noodles are made I am not surprise if this entire bowl is made up a single strand of noodles, all hand made.

So, with my usual itchy mouth, I asked the waitress how long it is. She brushed me aside and said “very long” like she was quite annoyed with my question. Ah … very authentic Chinese restaurant service. LOL!


The main thing about Dan Dan Noodle is only the noodles and the sauce. Very simple dish but yet complex to make it perfect.

The peanut based creamy sauce is spicy and tangy and had a little minced meat and spinach. I tasted a bowl of that. It was good and had a lot of flavour. The noodles tasted great too. Personally I find that the sauce is too thick for my liking.

This is $7. Dan Dan Noodles are cheap to make and so $7 is a little bit on the high side.


Suanne was on a mission for one of our readers. Michelle was asking where she could find Shaobing. Suanne remembered reading about there is Shaobing in this restaurant and it was the primary reason why we chose to eat here. So Michelle, here you go.

The word “bing” on Shaobing refers to biscuits or cookie in Chinese. I am sort of making this up but I think it is rather accurate. I need readers to help me confirm if I am correct or wrong. You see … this is the closest to a cookie in Chinese. The Chinese do not use ovens for their cooking and as such you end up with biscuits pan fried like this. There is no oven baked cookies like the ones you know of in Chinese cuisine. Correct? Yes? No? Yes?

There are actually several variations of Shaobing but the main distinctly is there is a version that is sweet and another that is savory. The sweet ones are usually made round while the savory ones are made in oblong shape like the picture above.


The Peaceful Restaurant calls this the Sesame Flat Bread on their menu. This is $6.

Shaobing is a partially leavened bread and covered with sesame seed which is toasted (pan fried?) to a crunch. The sesame seed gave it the fragrance that you could “taste” even before you bite into it.


Since this is a Northern Chinese restaurant, we ordered the Xiao Long Bao. This is $6.50. We were surprised it came with 8 pieces, normally it is 6-7.

Don’t get this. No good.

See how wet the bottom is? And how flat the edges of the buns lies? Well, … (more…)

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Legendary Noodles in Richmond

The Legendary Noodle restaurant in Richmond had closed.

We went to the Legendary Noodle restaurant in Richmond. It’s a small diner with only about 30 seats. What sets this place apart is that the chef pulls and cuts the noodles by hand. The chef is a very nice humble man who so graciously consented to have his pictures taken when we asked. He made it look so simple!


He stretches the dough, brings two ends together, spins it, twists it and repeats the process over and over again until they all form thin strands of noodles. It must have been at least 100 yards of noodles by the time he finished.


Nothing compares with a bowl of freshly made noodles. I swear that there’s a difference in Legendary’s noodles — not only in the look but also in the taste and texture. They are tender, yet chewy.

The strands are so long that the waitress actually cut the noodles with a pair of scissors just before they bring it to our table.


Click on the link below for the review of dishes we ordered and more about the restaurant.


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