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May 1, 2008 12:24 PM

Dim sum on carts in Vancouver proper?

We are looking for a carts dimsum place for a group of eight on a Saturday at 11 am, where two have only been for dimsum once before (at Golden Ocean with us!). Needs to be in Vancouver itself because of centrality for attendees (sadly, that leaves out the many great Richmond options). Has anyone been to Flamingo on Fraser lately? We used to enjoy the Fraser Street outpost but Golden Ocean has replaced it, partly because of location. TIA.

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  1. Golden Swan has carts (last time I went anyway).

    1 Reply
    1. re: fmed

      5380 Victoria Drive

      Golden Swan Restaurant
      5380 Victoria Dr, Vancouver, BC V5P3V7, CA

    2. Doesn't the Main Street Sun Sui Wah have carts? I know that the Richmond doesn't anymore, but haven't been to Main St in a while.

      7 Replies
      1. re: toutefrite

        The SSW on Main St had carts last time I was there (almost exactly one year ago now).

          1. re: el_lobo_solo

            So far we have:

            Sun Sui Wah on Main
            Golden Ocean
            Flamingo (we think)
            Golden Swan


              1. re: grayelf

                I've been meaning to do a cart dim sum list now that carts seems are quickly becoming extinct.

                I'm fairly sure these restaurants still use carts:

                Sun Sui Wah, Main (confirmed upthread)
                Golden Swan
                Pink Pearl
                Golden Phoenix (This is my go-to place since it is close by - carts only come out on weekends I think)

                I have not been to most of these in the last year, so I don't know if the particular restos are still using carts:

                Wong Gok
                International Chinese Restaurant
                King's Garden
                Dai Tung

                1. re: fmed

                  Just to clarify, Sun Sui Wah (Main St.) did not have carts when I was there on a weekday, but it sounds like you should be OK on the weekend.

                  1. re: waver

                    So I'm combining the lists from upthread and adding where and when carts appear -- probably best to reconfirm if you have a particular target in your crosshairs :-):

                    carts on weekends only:
                    Sun Sui Wah on Main (confirmed by phone May 2/08, they take resos)

                    Carts all week:
                    Golden Ocean (confirmed by phone May 2/08)
                    Flamingo (closed Tuesday, will take resos on w'ends, confirmed May 2/08)
                    Golden Swan (confirmed by phone May 2/08, no resos)
                    Pink Pearl (confirmed by phone May 2/08, they take resos)
                    Golden Phoenix (confirmed by phone May 2/08, they take resos)
                    Szechuan Chongqing on Broadway (confirmed by phone May 2/08, they take resos)
                    International Chinese Restaurant (confirmed by phone May 2/08, they take resos)
                    Dai Tung (confirmed by phone May 2/08, no resos)

                    Other updates:
                    Wong Gok is now called Resting Lake and doesn't have carts or $2 dim sum anymore, but I read it may be being run by Golden Swan's old chef so might be worth a look, fmed.
                    King's Garden: no carts anymore

                    That's not a bad list but we should keep adding if anyone else knows of any more of these disappearing treasures in Vancouver proper!

          2. International Chinese Restaurant on Hastings St which confusingly seems to have two names (it also had a sign calling the place Chinese Seafood Restaurant or something like that).

            Wednesday for lunch - half-full, 4 carts and 2 managers roaming the floor. Very traditional dim sum - nothing even remotely fusiony or creative. Full of old-timers. I like the ambiance which comes from a subdued acoustics from a carpeted floor (not shrill, clangy like many tile floored dimsum places).

            Food is OK...old-school.

            2 Replies
            1. re: fmed

              Thanks for that, Fmed. Do you have an exact address?

              1. re: grayelf


                2163 Hastings Street East
                Vancouver, BC

                International Chinese Restaurant
                2163 E Hastings St, Vancouver, BC V5L1V2, CA

            2. Golden Phoenix near Nanaimo and 1st Ave. This is my family's "go-to" dim sum place mainly because we live close by.

              It is a clean well appointed restaurant with very good service, attentive staff and fast cart and tray turnarounds. The dim sum is also very good - a good selection of traditional items (eg, siu mai, har gao, etc) and an excellent selection of contemporary and modern items. For example, they had wasabi and shrimp spring rolls, deep fried silver fish, spot prawns done a multitude of ways (it is spot prawn season currently), a series of interesting steamed constructions, a whole slew of interesting glutinous rice-based sweets.....etc.

              Many the items coming out on the trays are not on the dim sum menu as far as I can tell. You can just sit back and wait for the next surprise.

              The prices are good - the low range starts out at around $2.50 with the bulk of the items sitting at the $3.25 and $4.25 range.

              Golden Phoenix also specializes in soups....they have some uncommon sounding soupy items on that menu. I have not yet tried any of them.

              Today, Saturday at around 11am, they had one cart lady, 3 tray ladies and 3 managers. There were only two of us in our party and one is my light-eating daughter - so I couldn't partake in many of the interesting items. We had the sweet rice balls, chicken and wolfberries, dried tofu skin roll, shrimp and wasabi spring roll, steamed shrimp with dried scallop, deep fried spicy squid (my daughter's favourite). We had plenty of leftovers.

              I highly recommend this place...great bang for the buck. It's a bit of a neighborhood secret, but the last time this neighborhood tried to keep a secret at this location...the restaurant went out of business...the great and lamented Green Village Shanghai restaurant.

              Golden Phoenix Seafood Restaurant
              2425 Nanaimo St, Vancouver, BC V5N5E5, CA

              6 Replies
                1. re: fmed

                  Had to try it out myself, a nice little spot indeed though a bit out of the way for me not living in that part of town. A very cozy place, can see why its a neighborhood secret. I didn't get as adventurous with the choices as you did fmed, but had a decent sampling of the usual suspects and then some. Thanks for the introduction to the dying breed of cart dim sum joints in YVR.

                  More thoughts and pics here:

                  1. re: shoku_tsu

                    I'm glad you had a good meal there. I'm lucky to have a very good dim sum place within walking distance. I notice that business is good - so I'm thinking they will stick around for a while. The whole operation seems to run pretty professionally.

                    I have some pics from more recent visits here:

                    I read your blog - fantastic.

                    1. re: fmed

                      Great to see the other dishes that one can have here - I didn't see any of those on your Picasa site come by our table. :( Maybe next time...

                      1. re: shoku_tsu

                        They seem to have a creative chef back in the kitchen. The tray ladies often carry out random unusual dishes. This is one good reason to keep cart/tray service around - for that element of surprise.

                        1. re: fmed

                          Interesting. And definitely a good point about the need for pleasant 'surprises" like this that only carts/trays can provide...

                2. Imperial downtown has carts.