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Lin's (Vancouver BC, pictures)

fmed Mar 16, 2008 09:22 AM

Lin's is run by the same team that run The Place Restaurant on Granville and 64th (?). Those in touch with the Chinese food word-of-mouth will know The Place as a great hole in the wall that serves great northern delicacies - notably their great xiao long bao (XLB).

Well, they have branched out and Lin (co-owner) recently opened up her own restaurant near the corner of Broadway and Granville. It occupies the space that Galing-Galing (the Filipino 'turo-turo' restaurant) used to occupy.

The management has made an attempt at upscaling - the space is cleaner and more 'designed' than The Place. The menu is different, but offers the stuff for which the The Place is famous - steamed buns. They also serve some adapted Sichuan, some typical Cantonese, and other assorted regional dishes. (Lin is reported to be a trained Sichuan chef - so I will make an effort to try some of the other Sichuan dishes). They have an inexpensive lunch menu - the run-of-the-mill dishes with rice. I recommend not bothering with those.

So far I have had the dan dan mian (here, a Northern adaptation of the Sichuan hawker noodles - this one uses a deep, sweet, toasted sesame sauce as a base); the XLB (great); Pork and Chive buns; and the Sesame Flat Bread. All of the dishes were very tasty and a cut above your typical Cantonese style Chinese small restaurant.

I have been there twice. The first time, the service was a bit chaotic as a result of (from my estimation) some inexperienced FOH staff. The second time I was there, the service was prompt and efficient. I chalk it up to the newness of this place.

With all the foot traffic and transit stops here, Lin's has the potential to succeed at this location. Check it out.

 
 
 
 
  1. morefuuud Mar 31, 2008 06:13 PM

    I'm so jealous. Now why would they go and open up that place AFTER I move out of Vancouver? I used to live just up the street ....!

    Does anyone happen to know what happened to Galing-Galing? That place was pretty good too.

    7 Replies
    1. re: morefuuud
      fmed Mar 31, 2008 07:52 PM

      >>Does anyone happen to know what happened to Galing-Galing? That place was pretty good too.

      I think they just gave up or retired.

      1. re: fmed
        g
        gourmet wife Apr 3, 2008 09:41 AM

        Hubs and I went the other night. The XLBs were not bad, very juicy but I still prefer the ones from Chens in Richmond or Wangs at Crystal Mall. The Dan Dan mein was so tasty! Loved it. The beef nooodle soup, meh, I've had better. The beef roll in pancake wasn't bad, I think it would of been better if the meat was warmer, I think they took it out from the fridge then nuked it 'cause it was a bit cold inside.

        1. re: gourmet wife
          fmed Apr 3, 2008 10:05 AM

          My favourite XLB place is Chen's. I have not been to Wangs - you are the umpteenth person to mention it...so it's now on my list!

          1. re: fmed
            Sam Salmon Apr 3, 2008 03:04 PM

            <<NW corner of Broadway and Fir>>

            1. re: Sam Salmon
              fmed Apr 3, 2008 04:18 PM

              Galing-galing had two locations - they were operating right within Goldilocks at one point. They moved next to the magazine shop (same block as Oscar's Art Books)...which (if I can get my bearings right...is definitely the NW of Broadway and Granville.

              (Let's try this fancy Map Feature....)
              Here's the precise address to avoid confusion:
              1537 W. Broadway, 604-733-9696

              -----
              Lin Chinese Cuisine and Tea House
              1537W Broadway W, Vancouver, BC V6J1W6, CA

              1. re: fmed
                Sam Salmon Apr 3, 2008 07:45 PM

                deleted because of slow and awkward format.

                1. re: Sam Salmon
                  fmed Apr 3, 2008 07:50 PM

                  Well...OK. It's mid block...but it's a pretty small block. ;) In any case I posted the address above. So hopefully that settles it.

                  For those seeking a landmark...it's close to Bin 942.

    2. fmed Mar 29, 2008 10:13 AM

      Our little secret is out...Vancouver Magazine reviews Lin's:
      http://www.vancouvermagazine.com/food...

      1 Reply
      1. re: fmed
        grayelf Mar 29, 2008 10:56 PM

        Alack! But hey, those wontons sound good :-).

      2. peter.v Mar 28, 2008 10:43 PM

        Made it out to Lin's earlier this evening after deciding I needed to broaden my Asian cuisine horizons beyond my usual Japanese/Vietnamese/Thai haunts. Ordered the pan fried pork buns (I couldn't figure out the xiao long bao on the menu... but greyelf's post below explains) and the tan tan noodles. Everything came timely and was very very tasty. The sauce on the noodles was strong and rich with just a tiny kick; the server warned me it was spicy, but I am pretty white... :P

        I'll definitely be back. I left stuffed after eating all of it, and it was under $12 (without tip).

        1 Reply
        1. re: peter.v
          grayelf Mar 28, 2008 11:31 PM

          Nice one, peter.v Now can you direct us to your usual J/V/T haunts, perhaps in another thread? I had a peep at your recent posts and nothing jumped out. Must know more about other peter.v's other Asian haunts (said in Homer Simpson voice).

        2. fmed Mar 18, 2008 09:21 PM

          I have to add to avoid confusion: Lin Restaurant (Broadway and Granville) and Shao Lin Noodle House (Broadway and Cambie) are not the same place and are unaffiliated.

          Lin's is actually called "Lin Restaurant and Tea House" according to their sign. Which brings up - they have a large assortment of teas on their menu...in case you are into Chinese Tea.

          7 Replies
          1. re: fmed
            j
            JWh Mar 28, 2008 04:17 PM

            Where is LIN's located?

            1. re: JWh
              fmed Mar 28, 2008 07:53 PM

              The NW corner of Broadway and Granville.

              1. re: fmed
                grayelf Mar 28, 2008 08:40 PM

                So five of us hit Lin's for lunch today, eschewing the 6.99 lunch specials at FMed's suggestion. We ordered the XLB (6 for 4.99, number 6 on the menu "Shanghai style juicy dumplings", handmade in front of us 'cause we had the back table near the kitchen), tan tan noodles 5.99, number 36), lemon chicken (10.99), fried green beans Szechwan style (9.99), braised beef noodle soup (6.29, numbeer 44), pan fried dumplings (6 for 4.99, number 7) and sizzling house special fried noodles (9.99, number 96). The last two items were add ons when we decided we hadn't ordered enough food.

                General comments: The room is pleasant and a bit cosier than many Chinese restos IMHO. The service started out well but fell apart a bit in the latter stages, as it appears all servers serve all tables (potential for chaos and wasted steps very high with no overall plan). Oh and we had to ask for tea which was a bit strange. Communication was a bit of an issue as one of the servers only spoke Mandarin, as we discovered when one of my Cantonese-speaking fellow diners attempted to request something. In their defense, they were pretty slammed by 12:20 and stayed busy for the full hour and a bit we were there.

                On to the food: the XLB were X-L-ent (sorry, couldn't resist). I'm no expert but yum. I forgot to warn one XLB newbie about the squirtiness but hey we've all been there, right? We would have had another order but by the time we asked for it they had run out (downside of making them by hand I guess).

                Tan tan noodles: very different than any I've had before, crushed peanuts on top only, broth very dark (almost black) and super garlicky with almost none of the sweetness that often characterizes this dish. The noodles themselves were delightful, soft but firm, I suggest housemade or at least super fresh. I really liked this version of a favourite dish.

                Lemon chicken: I have a soft spot for this dish when done well (thin coating, yellow not nuclear pink/orange sauce, tender chicken) and we all gave high marks to Lin's version.

                Green beans: really well executed, done to the perfect tender crisp, dried garlic topping not too gnarly but flavourful, perhaps slightly less spicy than the other local contender at Szechuan Chonqing, which I think these beat. Another winner for all.

                Braised beef noodle soup: same noodles as tan tan and just as good, beef was tender and not gristly (except for one small piece), group was split on the broth, which a couple found an odd colour and oddly spiced but others liked. All but one felt it might have benefited from the addition of spinach or sprouts.

                Pan fried dumplings: very tasty, thin but not too thin wrappers, nicely fried, not too greasy

                House noodles: probably my least favourite as it was basically a version of chow mein which I'm not a huge fan of. The veggies, chicken and shrimp were all nice but likely would not order it again because I think there are other more unusual dishes to try.

                Summing up: no failures, some really great dishes and some good dishes. We paid $14 each including tax and tip. Will definitely be back to try more of the dumpling options (we were not able to suss out what FMed meant by "pork and chive buns" this time as nothing like that is listed). Great to have this option so close to both work and home.

                1. re: grayelf
                  fmed Mar 28, 2008 11:24 PM

                  >> we were not able to suss out what FMed meant by "pork and chive buns"

                  These:
                  http://www.chowhound.com/photos/153751
                  ...I may have meant to call them Pan Fried Buns..

                  1. re: fmed
                    grayelf Mar 28, 2008 11:26 PM

                    Duh, I forgot you had posted pictures. We saw a plate of these go by and thought they looked great. Next time! Thanks for the clarification. Now to bed to dream of dumplings :-).

                2. re: fmed
                  s
                  Steve S Apr 3, 2008 02:48 PM

                  I think you mean the NW corner of Broadway and Fir, one street to the west of Granville. That's where Galing-Galing was.

                  1. re: Steve S
                    peter.v Apr 3, 2008 03:50 PM

                    Nope, fmed is right, it would be the NW corner of Broadway and Granville (or, since it is almost directly between Fir and Granville, it would be the NE corner of Broadway and Fir).

            2. fmed Mar 17, 2008 04:23 PM

              A bit of an update: I heard from another source that the owners of The Place Restaurant actually sold that restaurant to another group....can't confirm this right now. So I may be off in my statement that Lin is still co-owner of The Place.

              1. fmed Mar 16, 2008 09:27 AM

                more

                 
                 
                 
                 
                3 Replies
                1. re: fmed
                  lvgoodfood Mar 16, 2008 01:11 PM

                  Looks so good. Thanks for sharing!

                  1. re: lvgoodfood
                    grayelf Mar 17, 2008 04:09 PM

                    Yes, thanks indeed! I've been trying to convince coworkers to try it out and your post has given me great ammo :-).

                    1. re: grayelf
                      grayelf Mar 26, 2008 10:05 PM

                      And the ammo worked -- a group of us are going for lunch this Friday. Will post my thoughts here afterward. Thanks again.

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