Food Vancouver Select Guide: Cuisine Sampling in Richmond, BC
Arriving in Richmond is the easy part, due to the convenient location of the Vancouver International Airport, BC Ferries and the US Border. The hard part will be deciding which cuisine to try as Richmond features a multi-ethnic community that is a true foodie’s dream. The following article is a 48 hour recount of tasting in Richmond, BC that should assist you with your decision.
Friday - 5:00 PM
Once you’re in Richmond, kick things off by checking into one of the many hotels. This is your home away from home, and no matter what your budget is, you can find something to suit your needs and wants.
Whether you are looking for true 4-star luxury, casual and comfortable, or a cozy bed and breakfast a short walk from the water, you won’t have a problem finding a place to stay. In fact, you can’t miss the 26 brand-name hotels here.
Check out Richmond’s accommodation options.
Once checked in and freshened up, it’s time to start tasting. Ease into the food scene with something uniquely West Coast. Right on the waterfront is Blue Canoe Waterfront Restaurant, a modern, upscale yet casual restaurant using the best local ingredients to create simple, balanced, and creative flavours and dishes. All paired with an extensive wine list. And speaking of wine, if that is your thing, check out Gudrun – a modern wine bar that is a special combination of local flavour and social atmosphere.
Another option to get a true taste of the West Coast is Tapenade Mediterranean Bistro. This urban bistro focuses on Mediterranean cuisine with a modern, coastal flair. If you would rather jump into the Asian tasting experience, a good place to start is Jade Seafood Restaurant – a Cantonese restaurant perfect for fine dining or that special event, all with the quality service to match.
Saturday - 11:00 AM
It’s Saturday morning. The birds are chirping, and Richmond is coming alive. Before you head out for the whale-watching adventure of a lifetime or a stroll on the boardwalk, it’s time to fuel up. Start with a charming breakfast at Cimona Cafe. With great breakfasts and European style coffee this is a real crowd pleaser that can be enjoyed on the patio or inside next to the fireplace.
Save some room for another cup of coffee at Robusto’s Cigars & Coffee. For some post-breakfast activity, check out London Heritage Farm, where warm scones complement a tour of the home and gardens of this beautifully restored 1860s farmhouse.
In the afternoon, another good place to engage your taste buds will be sampling freshly picked fruit and fabulous fruit wines at Sanduz Estate Wines. Richmond’s first farm-based winery was created as an extension of an already successful blueberry and cranberry farm. It is now British Columbia’s largest fruit winery. Owners Dave and Neeta Sandu hold bragging rights to BC’s largest selection of fruit wines. Not to be missed are the truly unique blueberry and cranberry varietals.
Okay. It’s time for some of that famous Chinese food. You have many options in Richmond – more than 200 authentic Asian restaurants can be found here. You can take the more traditional route at Shiang Gardens Seafood Restaurant, an elegant teahouse restaurant. Or take modern flavours for a spin at Hakkasan Contemporary Chinese Cuisine – serving original Chinese food with a very contemporary twist. This is food as artwork.
There’s lots more than Chinese food as well. At Tsujiki Japanese Restaurant you’ll find imported fish directly from the world’s biggest seafood market in Japan. Savour the most delicious lamb popsicles, grilled and marinated in ponzu sauce or sample the sashimi and sushi creations.
Run, don’t walk, to a Richmond tradition. Part festival, part carnival, and part food lovers’ heaven, the Summer Night Market in Richmond has been wowing locals and visitors since 2000. Make room in your stomachs and your bags for the delicacies and treats at over 250 vendor booths. You can find everything from trinkets and toys to foods like meat on sticks. Don’t forget to sample the dragon beard candy; it simply must be tried. This is very much like the authentic night markets that can be found in China, but as always, with a West Coast twist.
Sunday - 11:00 AM
You might still be full from the Summer Night Market, but now is not the time to look back. Brunch must be had, and dim sum must be experienced. Dinesty Chinese Restaurant is a hot spot for specialties from Taiwan and Shanghai, including some extremely delicious dim sum. Another great option for your Sunday morning dim sum is Fisherman’s Terrace, a Cantonese restaurant with a modern and contemporary style that will please just about everyone.
After brunch, go for a tasting at the Lulu Island Winery. With their Blossom Wine label, they have been leading the charge of British Columbia exporters, making fine raspberry, blueberry, and ice wines. Owner John Chang learned winemaking on his grandmother’s knee and brings in touches of Chinese medicine and antioxidants to his winemaking. It’s wine as philosophy. The winery now has a 15-acre site including a 22,000-square-foot facility and 3-year-old grape fields for you to tour and sample.
Stop in Steveston before heading home to add goodies to your take-home bag. Get fish fresh off the boat at the dock or check out the abundant supplies of fresh produce at the Steveston Farmer’s and Artisan’s Market, where over 50 vendors have the best local produce, healthy foods, flowers, and plants on offer. Unique local artisans display their work as well, so you can stuff your bags on the way home.
While you’re in the area, make a point to check out the market at Papi’s Ristorante Italiano. Technically this landmark is actually three venues in one – a fabulous Italian restaurant, a world-class wine bar, and a charming market, featuring a celebration of Italian culture and cuisine.
Oh, and one last belly-stuffing experience needs to be accomplished. On the boardwalk at the Government dock is Pajo’s Fish & Chips. This award-winning local joint has been a tradition since 1985, serving up golden, battered, and deep-fried fish and chips on their patio to the masses. Soak up the West Coast lifestyle and fresh air before heading back to wherever home is.
Thirsty for more?
See our full listing of recommended food partners.
Photos and article courtesy of Tourism Richmond
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