of the most remarkable facets of our city is the way that many diverse ethnic
cultures happily co-exist in close quarters, and then fuse and combine in
exciting and novel ways.
Wild Rice is one of the best examples of "East Meets West" and
really typifies the energy of Vancouver's young, but sophisticated,
culture-seeking generation. Take ingredients and traditions from China,
transform them with modern West-coast cooking techniques, and situate this
delightful fusion of flavours in a room designed and conceptualized from the
ground up by visual artist Terri Storey.
The effect of all this is simply mesmerizing. Be prepared to taste culinary
creations that will surprise you with their innovative use of ingredients, but
this is an innovation that is clearly done with careful purpose, to make your
dining adventure a rewarding one.
Pictured above is the dish "Chinatown Sweep" ($14) which is
"four spice blend dusted BBQ pork, with East-West stir
fry on fresh chow mein". Also pictured below are the "deep
fried crispy wontons" which were arranged artfully on the plate and over a
base of a sweet fruit reduction and fresh herbs. One of my favorite appetizers
(not pictured) is the "Saute of Tied Long Beans and Capsicum" ($5)
with chilies and sesame almond brittle - the beans were the longest I have ever
seen and were sauteed to just the right tenderness.
The ambience of this restaurant is set with the muffled
but ever present beat of a subwoofer, the rhythm reminding
us of the urban life that continues on around us - but inside Wild Rice, time is
for a moment suspended, as we enjoy what has been described for three years in a
row as the "most innovative menu" in Vancouver by the Georgia
Straight. This restaurant really speaks to what Vancouver is about - an openness
to new cultures, recipes, and friends. I'd definitely recommend Wild Rice to
visitors who want an experience of East/West fusion that only Vancouver can
|Crispy wontons appetizer
||A view of Wild Rice's bar from the second floor landing.
The space was designed and conceptualized from the ground up by visual
artist Terri Storey.
Reviewed by: Geoff Peters
Last reviewed: Feb. 25, 2005