Fook Po Tong (Chinese Herbal Shop) in Yaohan, Richmond

Polly and I went to a Chinese Herbal Shop for dessert soup instead of cake. We went to Fook Po Tong in Yaohan’s foodcourt in Richmond. We had passed by this small lot many times but have never try the food there before.

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Fook Po Tong is a shop which specializes in herbal tea and jello. The shop’s specialty is Guilinggao or Herbal Jello.

The shop is decorated with large banners of its menu in Chinese. It also has displays of Chinese herbs on shelves which lined the walls. An old fashion clock which chimes every half an hour brings back memory of my old home which also had a similar clock.

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The tables and stools in the shop has an old fashion feel to it.

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Orchid Delight Restaurant

Update 27-Feb-2008: This restaurant could have been closed based on the status as seen on various restaurant review websites. Suanne and I had not personally verify this.

Last weekend, we did not know where to go for lunch. We wanted to go somewhere we had never blogged on before. So I drove to No 3 Rd in Richmond — can’t think of any place. Then I continued over the Oak St Bridge to Vancouver’s South East Marine Drive — nothing fancy. Then I drove up Main St — also nothing we liked. Then we drove through Broadway — sigh, also nothing we fancied. By that time, Nanzaro and Arkensen was complaining that they were hungry and asked why do I have to always go to someplace to blog … and why I can’t go just to eat!

After driving around for 15 miles, I decided to just go to the Orchid Delight. The Orchid Delight is a Singaporean-slash-Malaysian restaurant located on Burrard and Broadway. They were located some years back at Willingdon and Moscorp in Burnaby.

The owner is the same but it is much smaller now. However, because of their new location right smack in downtown, they now cater a lot to more non-Asians. They are much cleaner. I like the new look. Parking is limited to only two spots behind the restaurant. Otherwise, there are plenty of street paid parking.

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Suanne ordered their special of the day, Fried Oyster Omelette. This is better known as oh-jian and is a popular Penang dish. It is rather expensive … 13 bucks. That is the special price of the day. The normal menu price is $16.

Parts of it is crispy and others are moist — it is a very good balance of texture. Suanne ordered this spicy. One thing though, there were hardly any oyster on this — or at least we can’t see it.

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Nanzaro ordered the Salted Salmon Chicken Fried Rice — same old stuff! Good to know from our readers that there is redemption for our boys when it comes to food. Whew!

This one costs $9. It is not as salty as those we find else where. The chicken, we noticed, were not fresh. It seems like it’s from some leftover fried chicken. This is strange — they had bean sprouts fried together.

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Anton’s Pasta

There’s a good reason why Anton’s Pasta had been one of the most popular restaurants in Burnaby. I believe that reason is because they serve the biggest serving of food anywhere in Vancouver. Anton’s had been a fixture in this part of the city for over 20 years. Their vision is to offer good food at affordable price … and lots of it too.

Driving past Anton’s along the 4200 block of East Hastings in Burnaby, I often see people actually waiting outside the restaurant for a table. At lunchtime, the wait could be very very long but definitely worth the wait.

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They serve bread for free. What do you call these kind of bread? I am sure there’s a name for this. It’s crusty, hard and dry — a tad too dry for my personal liking.

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Since we’re in an Italian restaurant, we ordered something Italian for drinks. The Sanpellegrino Limonata is an imported lemon soda from Italy. Pretty expensive … a can costs $3.25. Well, at least they gave us a glass with a wedge of lemon.

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Lai Leung Kee Delicatessen in Empire Centre

I bet this posting will put some people off.:-) But who cares .. what I am blogging here is a delicacy to people in China. I am adventurous when it comes to food. I’ll try anything … well, almost anything.

We chanced upon this place in the Empire Centre, the strip mall along No 3 Rd where Hon’s is.

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Parking is always a challenge at this strip mall. Many people comes here to either go for their meals at Hon’s or do their chinese grocery shopping at the Empire Supermarket.

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Lai Leung Kee Delicatessen is located in food court in the mall across from Hon’s. It is a very little known food court. This shop sells really exotic chinese food and for a very low price.

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Hollywood Steak House in Richmond

Polly recommended this place to us. The Hollywood Steak House located on Leslie Road (just behind Wendy’s on No 3 Rd) is basically a HK Style Cafe despite the name. We would not have found this place on our own perhaps because the signs in the restaurant front is almost all in Chinese and it’s located out of the way from the busy No 3 Rd.

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So, what defines a HK Style Cafe? Why … it’s the Milk Tea! They came with every dish we ordered.

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Suanne ordered a Personalised Combo which allows a selection of two dishes from a menu of perhaps 15. The Combo also comes with a soup, garlic toast and spaghetti. All these for only $9.95. Here is what she had:

The Corn Cream Soup is very creamy and very rich of corn flavour. It has chunks of artificial crab meat in it. It looked nice and tastes great.

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Pho Hoang on Main St, Vancouver

Nothing beats a steaming bowl of Pho on a cold and rainy winter day. Pho Hoang is one of our favourite Vietnamese restaurants. Located along Main at East 18th Avenue, it is easy not to miss this restaurant with a wide store front. What we like about Pho Hoang is not so much for their Pho but the fact that they had a very extensive menu beyond just Pho.

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From the many reviews we read of Pho Hoang, the biggest beef (pun intended) is with their slow service. I think it is because of the way the restaurant is laid out. It is wide with two wings separated at the entrance. It took about 10 minutes before they came with the menu and our pot of tea.

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It is without a doubt that it’s a very popular restaurant. The place were simply packed when we arrived late for lunchtime. Unlike a lot of other Vietnamese restaurants, this place has a good mix of Asians and non-Asians customers.

Thai Peppers! I love Thai Peppers but they game only one — unchopped. This means that they expect the customer to bite into it. They are lethally hot. They are 50,000-100,000 on the Scoville Rating. As a comparison, Tabasco is 7,000-8,000, while Jalapeno is only 2,500-8,000.

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The Cha Gio (Vietnamese Spring Roll) costs $3.95 for a serving of three. The skin is deep fried and crisp. The fillings were seasoned with lots of ground black pepper. This is one of the best spring rolls I have tried. I like the way the skin is deep fried. Do you know how they make it so different from the normally smooth skin?

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#9 Restaurant — Late Night Snack

Suanne and I were still hungry after the Air Supply Concert. It was quite late by the time we got back to the city of Richmond from Coquitlam. There are not many places opened at almost midnight. There is one place we know is opened 24 hours. It’s the #9 Restaurant on the No 3 Road.

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On the cold winter night, we wanted some hot drinks. The #9 Restaurant is a Cantonese/Hongkong restaurant. So, we ordered the milk tea.

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Hawker’s Delight on Main St, Vancouver

Hawker’s Delight is perhaps one of the ugliest looking restaurants around. And they are not exactly one of the cleanest places too. However, we absolutely love this place because it is also one of the cheapest places where one can get a full meal for less than five bucks.

Hawker’s Delight, a Malaysian restaurant, is located on Main St Vancouver.

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They have the menu on the wall. Many of the dishes are spicy. So, you want to make sure you know what you’re ordering. The pictures do look very delicious. They only have about seven small tables — very cramped. If you go during their busy lunch time, you will have to wait for a table ala Malaysian style … stand beside the table and try to wait patiently for people to finish their meal!

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Don’t expect table service. You have to go to the counter to place your order and get your own drinks to your table. They have self-service hot tea and water. Oh, they don’t take credit cards or Interac at all. It’s cash only. Oh, they also have a tips box on the counter.

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Suanne ordered Prawn Noodle. The prawn soup tastes alright. It has a few large prawns and BBQ pork, bean sprout and garnish with fried shallots and chopped green onions. Just like the way they make it in Malaysia.

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Dine Out Vancouver 2007 – Chambar Restaurant

I brought my local Vancouver project team for a little celebration for meeting a critical phase of project deadline. Those guys and gals had been working lots of overtime and weekends and had a major delivery completed on schedule. They all truly deserved a break, a time to sit back and celebrate a job well done.

So, to celebrate we went to the Chambar Restaurant. Chambar is a popular Belgian restaurant located on Beatty St in Vancouver. Unless you already know Chambar, a lot of people don’t even know it exists. From the outside you would easily miss this place because the restaurant does not stand out at all.

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We ordered from their Dine Out Vancouver menu. It is $25 … and is a much more better deal food wise than some of the $35 ones I tried earlier. Some had the “La Salade” … the La Salade de Cresson – Watercress & endive salad, red wine poached pear, candied pecans, shallot crisps, gorgonzola dressing.

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For me, I had the “la prawns” … Crevettes de safran – Saffron marinated prawns, peashoot & soba noodle salad. Spiced raita. Nice large prawns.

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Dine Out Vancouver 2007 – CinCin Ristorante

I am glad to learn that at least one reader missed our regular daily blog. It was a hell of a week for me at work. I could barely do anything else after work, let alone blog. Suanne had some blog entries left but we decided to not release those just yet so that we can keep this series of Dine Out Vancouver intact … it is my job to blog on this series. Am now back in action …

Lets see … we started off with a west coast style restaurant, and then we went to a grill, then a seafood restaurant followed by a french restaurant. This next one is perhaps the best Italian restaurant in Vancouver. It is located in the upscale Robson Street. Robson St is famous for the fashion shops and dining. It’s our version of Rodeo Drive and Fifth Avenue.

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CinCin (pronounced as chin-chin) had won many awards especially in 2005 and 2006 in the Italian and wine categories. Some of the award mentioned were:

  • Best Italian – Where Most Memorable Meal Award, 06
  • Best Ambiance – Where Most Memorable Meal Award, 06
  • Best Restaurant in Vancouver – Les Clefs D’Or Silver Service Award, 06
  • Best Italian Readers Choice – Vancouver Magazine – Gold 06
  • Best Italian Critics Choice – Vancouver Magazine – Silver 06
  • Best Wine List in BC – Vancouver International Wine Festival – Gold 06
  • Best of Award of Excellence – Wine Spectator – 06

It is located on the second floor just above the fcuk Connection.

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A stone stair case winds up from the hustle and bustle from the street level to the first floor dining room and bar. The restaurant is decorated throughout in earth tone. Lighting was dim.

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I got to learn to order another type of cocktail. I have always had the same thing — Bloody Caesar. What is your favourite pre-meal drink? Give me some suggestion?

Anyway, the Caesar as always is spicy but this one is so much more heavier with vodka. Six bucks, small glass but perfecto!

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Starters were the normal bread but with some thingy that is made of Olives, Roasted Garlic, Herbs. We think this is called Tapenade. How is this pronounced? I said that it’s ta-pa-nah-dey but Suanne insists that it’s ta-pa-ned. Anyway, this tapenade thingy is, well, sourish and salty at the same time. It doesn’t taste bad but it’s not good to me. I preferred good old butter and so I asked for some.

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