Another Richmond food court voyage
Three Hounds (later joined by a fourth plus Chowpup) set sail for the wilds of Three Road and environs one lovely July morning. We dropped anchor first at Kuo Hua to stock up on Taiwanese treats to take home. Much drinking vinegar was purchased! I think we all got the free item for buying more than thirty dollars worth of merchandise :-).
President's Plaza was our first eating port of call as I had been craving a crepe from O'Tray. My dining companions kindly suppressed their disgust as I devoured an entire one to myself while they daintily split one between them. So very good but must be eaten immediately to get the full eggy, crunchy experience.
After a quick docking at Yaohan to check out the food court there -- it's one of the only food courts I hadn't been to yet -- we sailed over to Aberdeen to try the XLB at Shanghai Shanghai. I warned my DCs that the recc was an old one and as it happened needs to be struck from the lists. XLB here were not salutary, too thick and kinda bland. And yet we ate them all. It's really hard not to.
What was rather worthy was a fish dish I spied on the picture menu, over to the left of the order counter. There is no English on there, just the pic (which actually looks rather different than the dish in real life, see below) and the price, $9.25. I've included it below in case you want to check it out. This fish was lovely and tender, with a hint of Sichuan peppercorn and a breath of chile heat. Quite a good deal given the amount of fish and that it comes with rice and a Coke! Thanks ladies for taking a flyer on this dish.
Next we succumbed to the siren call of Hainanese chicken rice at Admiralty Court on McKim Way. This is a relatively quiet little zone that I first visited with miss foodie and her parentals, though it was much busier today. I liked the HCR so much that I'd been wanting to try it again and my DCs were on board. I forgot to write the name of the stall down but I believe it is M&W Food Kitchen per Ben's post here: http://chowtimes.com/2010/10/27/admir...
At any rate, it is the only place serving HCR and there is a picture of a chicken on a plate with a large purple flower. You won't miss it. Be sure to ask for the Hainan free range chicken on rice WITH OIL so that you get the lovely yellow rice instead of the plain white. I think it is even still item F! For me that rice is the major drawing point for this stall -- the chicken is the best version I've had (though my DCs wanted even more gelatin, but decided this slight lack was because it is free range) with the texture firm and smooth, but the rice is soooo good. Our additional diners had joined us so we also tried some duck (not pictured) and some marinated pigs ears (crunchy goodness, and a large portion to boot -- my SO got the leftovers, lucky boy).
Our next port of call was the small and rather empty food court at Pacific Plaza, which is upstairs on the west side of the complex Sushi Hachi is in. We were after some Indonesian snacks at Gee Taste Good which is run by a lovely older couple who emigrated many years ago and bring tastes from home to share with us. I had a hankering for their otak otak which is a sort of fish mousse tamale that is steamed inside a leaf. It was as good as I remembered, though held together by metal staples (!) which I don't recall from previous visits. Very likely prefrozen but worthy ($2.50 a piece). We also tried the perkedel, a potato beef cake that was $2 for three pieces. I liked it a lot, very comfort foody.
The lady owner seemed to enjoy our enthusiasm for her products as she popped out with a complimentary platter of curry chicken and a lamb dish that I don't see on the takeout menu I nabbed. Both were lovely but I really enjoyed the chicken and would go back just for that. One of my DCs did in fact go back to try the beef rendang and pronounced it excellent. They have gado gado and laksa among other things and I notice they do party trays (minimum 10 people, $14 per person) that sound great. Closed Mondays, phone is (604) 728-7326
We also had a couple of iced cendols, not quite up to the late lamented Seri Malaysia's versions but good ($3.50) and some jelly type desserts that were $1 each. I like the brown one pictured in the bag beside the beef cake the best as it had that brown sugary taste that contrasted nicely with the coconut, but the green stripey one was tasty too. The value here is pretty outstanding and though it may not be the best southeast asian food you've ever tried, I think you will like it.
Our voyage continued with a stop at Michigan Noodle to try one of our diners favourite lo mein with shredded pork in spicy brown sauce. I think this was $7.25. The size is relatively small but that suited us just fine at this point in the proceedings! I found the sauce just a tad sweet and it was not in fact spicy. I loved the noodles' squeakiness and they were cooked perfectly. Lo mein is a great call here -- I'd like to try some of the other toppings next time.
Our final port of call was Hong Kong Barbeque Masters for some porky goodness to take home for dinner. I got some of the bbq pork and some of the roast pork. The cut on the bbq pork was a bit off this time, not as toothsome and perfect in texture. The roast pork was great as usual, with the salty chicharon-like fat.
Another great crawl, thanks to the intrepidness of my DCs!
On a recent trip to Vancouver the theme was "meat on a stick" (see thread).
That search took us to Yaohan Mall for BBQ at HK, which is a small spot on the street level near the parking lot, but they are closed on Wed when were there. So we went up to the food court and got some herbal jello, (someone needs to explain this shop to me as there was a bit of a communication problem) and we did get some BBQ which wasn't much special and we got hooked into "4 items with rice or noodles for 7.99." Well it looked pretty good in the case and there were about 4 stalls selling the same thing so we figured someone knows more than us and bit the bullet. Not a good choice as most of the things were fried and tasted of old fry oil. But, nothing ventured...
The next step was to 4500 Kingsway on the street of the Crystal Mall was Abduls BBQ which was real "meat on a stick" and worth every effort to get there! Excellent lamb shawarma warp with some kind of peppery tahini sauce. Really good and have heard good things about Abdul's falafel.
Found out we were at the Crystal Mall and went up for another look. I like this place and without a guide it's a trick. Next time I'm going to hang out, see what people are eating, what looks good, and ask them where they got it and what it was called.
Did get some roasted chestnuts and an order of soup dumplings where I took this picture.
Dumplings and broth tasted strongly of pork.
Anyone been to the herbal place at Crystal Mall and care to weigh in on their offerings?
For next time JayDK:
Xu's:The XLB that you had were probably decent, and certainly worthy if you're already there. The stall that formerly occupied that space and made Crystal Mall a destination for XLB is alas long gone. The pan fried dumplings are pretty decent too.
Want Want: get the lamb roujiamo and the lamb sticks. The dry Sichuan hotspot is not bad either.
Ipoh Malaysian Beansprout Chicken stall: get their signature dish (the chicken). I like the some of other Malaysian specialties there too.
Northern Meixi: get a simple dish of their hand pulled noodles with meal sauce.