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By VisitRichmondBC.com

These five spots for Taiwanese beef noodle soup showcase how one seemingly simple comfort dish can be interpreted in a variety of ways by chefs around Richmond. Regardless of the version you choose, you’ll leave very satisfied.

Joy’s Taiwanese Food
Parker Place, 4380 No 3 Road, Richmond BC

Soup at Joy’s | Image by Tara Lee

At first glance, the food court at Parker Place doesn’t seem like the place to find mind-blowing eating experiences. Vendor stalls are basic, with the kind of efficient service and plating you’d expect of mall dining.

However, a stall like Joy’s Taiwanese Food with its elevated beef noodle soup embodies much of the spirit of Richmond eating: unassuming cooking that is affordable and deliciously authentic.

The menu includes all sorts of Taiwanese classics like marinated tripe. Being an island nation, Taiwanese cuisine represents a confluence of culinary influences, as well as resourcefulness due to limited ingredients. Its food is superficially simple and rustic while being incredibly complex in flavour.

Case in point is Taiwanese beef noodle soup (niu rou mian); it’s Sichuan in origin and purported to have been brought to Taiwan during China’s Civil War. At Joy’s, the first spoonful of the broth, the litmus test of the dish, is revelatory, evidencing a deep leveraging of ingredients, like star anise, garlic, ginger, soy, bean paste, peppercorns, and garlic. The soup has a beefy cloudiness to it, which gives a pleasurable unctuousness. Meanwhile, the noodles have a good chew, and the beef shank is wonderfully tender.

The many other customers you’ll see hunched over bowls of noodle soup nearby, attests to the popularity of this dish. It’s the ultimate in comfort food, with standout versions to be found all around Richmond.

Chef Hung Taiwanese Beef Noodle
Aberdeen Centre, 2800-4151 Hazelbridge Way, Richmond BC

Soup by Chef Hung | Image by Michael Kwan

The “king of Taiwanese beef noodle,” Chef Hung Ching-Lung has extended his empire to a location in Richmond’s Aberdeen Centre. His signature beef noodles have won numerous awards, including the Taipei International Beef Noodle Awards and, more locally, Best Noodle House at the Vancouver Magazine Restaurant Awards. For pure consistency and breadth of options, Chef Hung definitely pulls ahead of the competition.

The menu allows patrons to customize their noodle soup, with a variety of broths (regular, clear, tomato, fire chili), noodles (flat noodle, thin noodle, rice noodle, vermicelli), and beef options (beef shank, brisket, tendon, tripe, sliced fatty beef). If you want to feel more virtuous, there’s also a version with five kinds of vegetables. Each iteration of Taiwan’s unofficial national dish is deeply enjoyable here, whether you want to go for the protein works, max the thickness of your noodles, or add a bit of contrasting tomato acidity to your beef broth.

Strike
Two locations:
Aberdeen Centre, 3260-4151 Hazelbridge Way, Richmond, BC
120-4751 Garden City Road, Richmond, BC

Soup at Strike | Image by Michael Kwan

If you’re in the mood (and have the stomach room) for a beef noodle soup showdown, you can wander over to Strike, located in the food court of Aberdeen Centre, for comparison. While the stall has a limited menu for expedient chowing down, the full restaurant on Garden City Road has more extensive options (like Taiwanese three cup chicken or octopus pancake). And of course, there are plenty of bubble tea options, like passion fruit black tea, for refreshing sips.

Strike’s beef noodle soup can’t be customized, but what you get is phenomenal. After all, who needs choices when the chefs have crafted the ultimate bowl? The sliced beef shank is tender and flavourful, while the abundant noodles are perfectly al dente. The broth also doesn’t stint on taste, with a dark flavour profile that embodies the robust nature of homestyle Taiwanese cooking.

Newton Beef Noodle House
150-8191 Saba Road, Richmond BC

Soup at Newton | Image by Tara Lee

With “beef noodle” in their restaurant name, Newton is intent on winning the stomachs of niu rou mian devotees. And indeed they are, one bowl-full at a time. Once you enter, you’ll be greeted by sleek dark interiors and by staff who are helpful and quick on their feet.

While the menu is primarily noodle focused, you can also order appetizers, like deep fried squid tentacles and as rice dishes. Non-soup noodle selections include homemade sesame sauce on noodles, as well as cumin beef stir-fried noodles. A range of teas, slushies, and fresh juices round out the offerings.

As for the beef noodle soup, customers can choose from the regular or spicy broth, as well as versions that include various combinations of beef shank, brisket, tendon, and tripe. Thin, thick, green bean, and rice noodles are available, depending on your carb preference. What arrives in front of you will not disappoint: the broth has an intense savoury, sweet, spicy, and slightly aromatic quality to it – all offset by the pickled mustard greens. The braised beef shank is toothsome and the noodles springy.

Pearl Castle Café
Two locations:
1128-3779 Sexsmith Road, Richmond, BC
Richmond Centre, 1782-6060 Minoru Boulevard, Richmond, BC

Soup at Pearl Castle | Image by Michael Kwan

This hip Taiwanese establishment began over two decades ago as a food court stand at Parker Place before morphing into a fixture of Richmond’s vibrant eating scene. Their winning formula (evidenced by four consecutive wins as Best Taiwanese Café for the Chinese Restaurant Awards Diners’Choice Awards) boils down to the modern décor, lively vibe, and impressively diverse menu. Snacks like fried chicken nuggets are addictively good, while the beef noodle soup is satisfying.

Versions here include house special beef noodle soup, tomato beef noodle soup, and, for those wanting real heat, extreme spicy beef noodle soup. Noodle selections consist of thin or thick noodles and vermicelli. With Pearl Castle open late on Fridays and Saturdays, it’s the perfect spot for a late night snack, especially if you’re craving a piping hot, generously portioned bowl of niu rou mian before braving the cold weather again.

By Kristi Alexandra

Tucked away just behind Burnaby’s landmark shopping epicentre, Metrotown, where there’s no shortage of food to wares, is a small culinary enclave to satisfy any sweet tooth.

Beresford Street, between Dow and Willingdon Avenues, is home to several cafes boasting homemade sweets with the saccharine quality of authenticity. From bubble tea and waffles, to gourmet soups, fresh pastries and handmade chocolates, this gastronomic haven is the gourmand’s secret gem — it’s a place to dine, sip, and study in relative quiet just steps away from the bustling crowds.

EStEA Café | 4466 Beresford St. 

An EstEA Café must-try

EStEA Cafe is the eatery to frequent whether you want to stay for five minutes or a few hours. The quaint cafe recalls a Riverdale favorite, Pop’s Chocklit Shoppe, with a modern Taiwanese influence. Seating less than 20, the cafe has an ambiance as adorable as its treats – with spiraling pink art adorning the walls. Bring a date to sit down and share the shop’s staple: A Bubble Waffle cup with ice cream ($6.75), and a side of bubble tea and cakes. If you’re looking for more of a full meal deal, the eatery also serves up fresh hot pot, Taiwanese chicken and rice dishes, and braised beef noodle soup. That meal would not be complete without starters, for which the shop offers up seaweed takoyaki and fish cakes, among others.

Fondway Café | 4462 Beresford St. 

Soup at the Fondway Café

Just a shop over from EStEA Cafe is another haunt for tea drinkers with a sweet tooth. Brunch, lunch, snacks, and desserts are a hot commodity in this woodsy but industrial cafe. Decorated with expertly placed knick-knacks and curios, Fondway Cafe has the homey vibe that welcomes coffee drinking students and the office lunch crowd. Daily homemade soups include the pumpkin chicken, clam chowder, Mediterranean vegetable, and French onion with a croissant, coffee, or pastry on the side. For more sweet toothers, there are combos–aptly named “Waffle Parties”– like the chocolate and banana or the matcha red bean paired with drinks, salads, and more.

Fondway Café snacks

For those who like to pick and choose, there are free-standing desserts like fluffy cheesecakes and creme brulee, and pre-wrapped sandwiches and fresh pastries for the grab-and-go lunch crew.

Mon Paris Patisserie | 4396 Beresford St. 

Treats at Mon Paris Patisserie

You’ve never had chocolate like this before. This Parisian-style confectionary shop knows the meaning of indulgence, and you can taste it in their handcrafted chocolates. With flavours like raspberry balsamic ganache to the earl grey infused dark chocolate, even the healthiest of eaters can spare an indiscretion for these treats. Box up some chocolate gems in pairs of 5, 9, and 12, or snag a few to enjoy in the shop with a stunning view of the Eiffel Tower mural. Besides some seriously rich chocolates, dessert lovers can pick up individual-sized cakes, and the ever-trendy (and oh-so-soft) macarons. The ambiance calls for a stay that’s akin to the patisserie’s treats: small, sweet, and thoroughly enjoyable.

By Tara Lee for VisitRichmondBC.com

Richmond, BC, is a food lover’s paradise with more than 800 restaurants in the city, and you can see for yourself why Richmond’s been visited by many food critics and has made a real name for itself as a foodie destination. Over 400 of the city’s restaurants serve Asian cuisine and Frommer’s notes that Richmond is “arguably the Asian food capital of North America.”

Whether you choose to dine at restaurants, cafes, food courts or at one of the night markets, you won’t be disappointed. To help you on your dining adventure here are my top 10 dishes in Richmond:

1. Steamed Crab Dumplings at Golden Paramount

1_ golden paramount _steamed crab dumplings

Whenever a friend asks me for a dim sum recommendation, I end up raving about Golden Paramount and the incredible talent of dim sum chef May Chau. The steamed crab dumplings ($4.98) look deceptively simple, but showcase a paper-thin, translucent wrapper and finely minced Chinese mushrooms, bamboo shoots, pork, crab meat, shrimp and cilantro. You can taste the artistry with each bite.

Location: 8071 Park Road

2. Three Cup Chicken (san bei ji) at Delicious Cuisine

2_three cup chicken_delicious cuisine

This classic Taiwanese dish is wonderfully hearty, especially on a cozy sweater sort of day. I tried many versions around town, but the one at Delicious Cuisine truly lives up to the restaurant’s name. The chicken is moist and coated with a caramelized sauce of soy, sesame oil and rice wine. Eaten with white rice, the dish ($12.50/large $23.95) will satisfy any discerning appetite.

Location: 100-7911 Alderbridge Way

3. Bangsilog Breakfast Plate at Kumare Restaurant

3_bangsilog-breakfast-plate_Kumare-Restaurant

Who wants cereal for breakfast when you can try a home-style Filipino breakfast platter! Kumare’s bangsilog combo ($9), which comes with fried boneless milkfish, a fried egg, a heaping portion of garlicky rice, and chopped tomatoes and onion. Bonus: coffee or tea is also included.

Location: 8130 Park Road

4. Fried Diced Lamb at Silkway Halal Cuisine

4_Silkway_Halal_Cuisine_033-670x446

Beware: it’s hard to stop eating this dish of fried diced lamb ($15.95) from this destination for Hui cuisine. It’s basically like popcorn lamb, coated in whole and ground cumin and chili powder, and deep-fried until perfectly crisp. The meat itself stays juicy.

Location: 110-8188 Saba Road

5. Grade “A” Ribeye Beef Teppan Rice at Teppan Kitchen

5_Beef Teppan Rice _ Teppan Kitchen

Teppan Kitchen in Aberdeen Centre’s food court features Japanese iron griddle cooking. The rib eye version comes with slices of beef, corn, green onion, rice and egg ($8.95 with miso soup), which you then mix together until the ingredients are cooked, and your rice is crispy on the bottom. If the dish gives you a hankering for more teppan, visit Pepper Lunch  (150-5951 Number 3 Road), whose first Canadian location took Richmond by storm earlier this year.

Location: Aberdeen Centre, 4151 Hazelbridge Way

6. Turnip Cake at Shanghai Wonderful

6_Shangahi-Wonderful-turnip-cake

At Shanghai Wonderful located in the Best Western Plus Abercorn Inn I adore the turnip cake ($5.95) available for dim sum. An exterior of rich flaky pastry gives way to shredded vinegary radish, chicken and dried pork. It’s a decadent mid-day treat.

Location: Best Western Plus Albercorn Inn, 9260 Bridgeport Road

7. Takoyaki at Richmond Night Markets

7_Takoyaki_night markets

If you are visiting Richmond in night market season, head to one of the two night markets. I enjoy the usual favourites, such as the rotato, deep fried squid, and pan-fried pork buns. Another addictive night market staple is Takoyaki (6 for around $5.75 pictured above). The jumbo Bakudanyaki is the ultimate snack, but not quite as good for sharing. The mini balls come with diced octopus in wheat flour batter, and are topped with Japanese mayo, as well as seaweed and bonito flakes. You can also find scallop and shrimp varieties at the night market if those are more your preference.

Location: The Richmond Night Market is at 3063-8700 McKim Way and Panda Night Market is at 12631 Vulcan Way.

8. Sautéed Black Bean Sole with Pickled Cabbage at Hakkasan Bistro

8_Black bean sole_Hakkasan Bistro

As pretty much the only restaurant in town that serves Hakka Chinese dishes, I have a soft spot in my foodie heart for Hakkasan Bistro. The wok-sautéed fillet of sole in black bean sauce ($10.95 as part of a lunch combo; $22 à la carte) is rustic fare quintessential of Hakka cooking. Red and green peppers, onion, and crunchy, zingy pickled cabbage add flavour and textural contrast to the fish.

Location: Unit 110 – 2188 No. 5 Road

9. The Godzilla Bite at Mega Sushi

9_Godzilla Bite_mega Sushi

The Godzilla Bite ($13.95) at Mega Sushi for its sheer inventiveness and aesthetic wow factor. The creation has chopped scallop, salmon and tuna atop deep-fried seaweed and rice. Tobiko (flying fish roe) and alfalfa sprouts complete the dish. Tempura crunch with whisky is set alight in the centre of the dish for added drama.

Location: 100-3131 Chatham Street

10. I Luv Strawberries at Well Tea

10_I luv Strawberries_well tea

I had to finish the list of with a sweet treat of fancy toast, which I found to be a major foodie trend of 2015. Fortunately, for toast fiends, Richmond boasts many cafes that serve towering Taiwanese thick toast. The I Luv Strawberries ($8.95) at Well Tea is a hollowed out loaf of sweet white bread, toasted and filled with strawberry jam, strawberry ice cream, fresh strawberries, an Oreo cookie, whipped cream and chocolate Pocky.

Location: 170-4811 Hazelbridge Way

As you can see there are lots of amazing dining experiences in Richmond, this is only 10 of the thousands of dishes out there. Plan your trip and create your own top 10 list!

By Visit Richmond BC

Chowing down at a food court in Richmond is somewhat different compared to the typical North American mall food court; you’ll find incredibly unique mom ‘n pop stalls serving tasty curries, warming noodle soups, creating mouth-watering dumplings, barbecuing meats – you name it, you’ll probably find it in Richmond. Each and every food court in Richmond has a hidden treasure waiting for you to discover it.

It can be slightly overwhelming on your first visit; there are so many options to choose from that you may not be able to decide. To help you out, here are some insider tips about two popular Asian malls and their food courts, including where to go for the best eats and how they compare to each other in the ultimate face-off!

Food options at Parker Place
Food options at Parker Place

The Contenders

 

Parker Place
Established in 1993, Parker Place Mall has become a shopping landmark in downtown Richmond. At this mall you can dine on the tastiest cuisine and shop for the trendiest fashion, the coolest toys and gadgets.

Yaohan Centre
Yaohan Centre is one of the earliest Asian Malls developed in Richmond. You’ll find over 80 stores selling fashion, health and beauty products, art and gifts; both the Osaka Asian supermarket and food court sell an array of dishes.

Yaohan Centre vs. Parker Place

 

The Mall: First Impressions
Easily accessible from the Canada Line’s Aberdeen Station, both malls are just a five minute walk in either direction (north for Yaohan, south for Parker Place). Both malls also have large parking lots offering free parking, making it easy to stop in for a quick bite.

Each mall has a few different entrances, but both food courts are easy to find. Parker Place has lots of Asian stores selling various items from rice cookers to fresh fish. Yaohan is home to Osaka Supermarket; if you have not been to an Asian supermarket before, this is a good one to look around and grab some cooking sauces, teas and candies.

Parker Place food court
Parker Place food court

The Food Court
Parker Place’s Food Court is long and narrow with food stalls on both sides and seating running down the centre. They have big tables, ideal for groups of friends and family and it is light and airy, making for a comfortable dining environment.

Yaohan Centre’s Food Court is quite spacious compared to Parker Place’s food court, with food stalls on three sides and plenty of seating in the middle. They have a nice path to walk around and view all food stalls.

The Food Stalls | Parker Place – Our Favourites:

 

Parker Place Meat & BBQ

While not formally in the food court, we would be remiss to leave this off the list of favourites. Found at unit 1020, Parker Place BBQ Meats is a small butcher shop selling freshly barbecued meats (chicken, duck and pork) as well as a variety of ready-to-go BBQ meals for under $10. Arguably serving up the best BBQ duck in Richmond, there are often long line ups so patience is necessary – we promise that the BBQ meats will be well worth the wait!

Lai Taste
This unassuming Vietnamese food stall offers tons of items including a huge selection of noodle soups and lemongrass dishes, but the star at this stall are the foot-long Vietnamese subs, or Bahn Mi, available for under $5, including tea. The buns are light and crispy and our top picks are the fried fish and pork sandwiches.

Joy’s Taiwanese Kitchen
For those looking for a traditional bowl of beef noodle soup and a side dish of onion pancakes, or some savoury beef wraps, Joy’s Taiwanese Kitchen serves up traditional Taiwanese fare in generous portion sizes. The value here is fantastic, with every dish available for under $10.

Honorable Mentions:

 

Shanghai Goodies
Has a good choice of noodle and rice dishes, desserts and Shanghai snacks. We recommend you try their Tan Tan noodles.

Rainbow Café
Visit this stall for sweet treats and bubble tea. It’s the best place for bubble waffles and a delicious treat made in-house, the dragon’s beard candy.

Food options at Yaohan Centre
Food options at Yaohan Centre

Yaohan Centre | Our Favourites:

 

Curry House
Curry House’s Laksa is one of the best in town. Not too spicy, not too creamy and with a good amount of noodles, chicken, egg and tofu puffs, this laksa is sure to fill any curry cravings you might have. They also serve up delicious Malaysian dishes for under $10, such as curries, Hainanese chicken, char kway teow and roti.

Wah Yuen Noodle House
This place offers almost every kind of congee, noodle, noodle soup, and noodle with meat combo possible. The wonton and BBQ pork noodle soup is always good – pair that with a Chinese donut or Chinese donut wrapped in rice noodle and you’ll have a very tasty lunch/dinner for under $10.

Chun Hing Cuisine, Golden Rice Bowl and Pak Tak
These three stalls are next to each other and offer a smorgasbord of Chinese dishes. You can choose from two or three dishes with rice or noodles from $6.99. They pile the plate so high, you’ll have enough to feed a family of four. All three stalls offer similar dishes, so take a look and see which one tickles your taste buds. Insider tip: go after 6pm and you’ll be able to get FOUR items plus rice or noodles for a mere $5.50.

Yaohan Centre food court
Yaohan Centre food court

Honorable Mentions:

 

Little Bean Tea Station
Serving bubble tea, shaved ice desserts and other sweet treats including Wheel Cake, which is filled with red bean or custard – your choice.

Datang BBQ
Head here for tasty BBQ meats, including duck, pork and quail. They have a variety of mix and match combos.

Our Verdict

 

Although both food courts serve up staple dishes and desserts you’d expect at a Chinese eatery, each have their own highlights. You won’t find barbecued meats as succulent as the ones at Parker Place Meats & BBQ serves up, but if you’re looking to feed a family, the three food stalls at Yaohan offering triple decker combos will beat any offering from Parker Place’s food court.

Having said that, we think both food courts are well managed. The stalls are diverse, with a lot of Asian cuisines represented. Each one has their own highlight and go-to dishes. Both are well worth a visit and both offer amazing value for their food. Our suggestion? Have lunch at Parker Place and dinner after 6pm at Yaohan to help stretch your travel budget.