First Look: Brave New Ramen at The Ramenman in the West End

There is scant information about this brand-new ramen place, The Ramenman, that opened up just a block away from Ramen Santouka. They’re now in their soft-opening phase. They opened quietly on Sunday, October 18 and I visited then on their third day of operation to check them out. Much thanks to Sean (Sean’s Adventures in Flavor Town) for the early intel — which you can view here, here, and here.

As with all of my “First Look” posts, take all these details with a grain of salt. Menus, prices, food, everything may change in the coming days, weeks, and months!

Continue reading First Look: Brave New Ramen at The Ramenman in the West End

Chowing Down Chiu Chow with Chowhounders at Double Double Restaurant in Richmond

Ah, the good ol’ Chowhound BC forum…we’ve been beaten down with heavy-handed moderation and ugly site redesigns, yet we still go back like dogs to vomit.

I’ve only met a couple Chowhound people in person. You know “tweetups”? Well, sometimes there are “chowdowns” where we meet up in real life to take photos of our food and eat food while talking about other food. A few of us Chowhound members met up at Double Double in Richmond recently and it was a night of firsts. I had never been to a chowdown (nor eGullet meet-up) before, and I had never been to Double Double before. I’d do both again.

TLDR: This dinner goes to show that most restaurants aren’t all good or all bad. It’s usually a matter of finding the best dishes that suit your taste. I hope this post helps you with that!

Continue reading Chowing Down Chiu Chow with Chowhounders at Double Double Restaurant in Richmond

Celebrating 5 Years of Pork: Swinefest 2015 at Hog Shack in Steveston

Hog Shack just celebrated it’s 5th anniversary on Thursday, Oct. 15, 2015 with Swinefest, a “competition-style” barbecue buffet that included a glass of Driftwood’s fresh hop Sartori Harvest for only $35! It was a sweet deal that probably flew under a lot of people’s radar, but it sold out well ahead of time anyways. We were there to celebrate and indulge, so here’s the recap. Enjoy!

Continue reading Celebrating 5 Years of Pork: Swinefest 2015 at Hog Shack in Steveston

Mouthful of Wang’s: XLB at Wang’s Shanghai Cuisine

The restaurant space next door to London Drugs on Kingsway near Joyce has been a restaurant black hole over the past 20+ years. In the 90s the space used to be a Taiwanese restaurant called “Lingering Flavour” which was really quite good. After Lingering Flavour closed down, the space turned into a few different restaurants before becoming a Bubble Waffle Cafe location last summer (review here). But then that closed down and became something else (possibly dim sum-related?), but NOW for the past month it’s been a Wang’s Shanghai Cuisine. I really hope they stick around because their xiao long bao (XLB) are great.

Continue reading Mouthful of Wang’s: XLB at Wang’s Shanghai Cuisine

Funk as a Flavour: Pig Intestine at South Castle Korean Restaurant (North Van)

Quick little post about a weekend lunch. No big revelations, just good funky Korean food with guts!

We had actually wanted to try out VanSoba but we got there at 12:50pm and they were already sold out of their handmade soba in little over an hour!! Their posted hours are 11:30am – 4:00pm, so that was a bit of a disappointment. 🙁 Ah well, next time. (See Kinome review for a taste of handmade soba.)

We googled for something else to eat and came up with South Castle Korean Restaurant on 2nd St. near Lonsdale Ave. in North Vancouver. We’ve actually been to the South Castle location in Coquitlam way back in 2012. Turns out this North Van location is the “original” and that they licensed the name for the independently-owned Coquitlam location. Menus are slightly different between these two locations, but both locations sell Korean sausage that is actually stuffed intestine. Food with guts!

Continue reading Funk as a Flavour: Pig Intestine at South Castle Korean Restaurant (North Van)

Great Handmade Buckwheat Soba Noodles and More at Kinome Japanese Kitchen in Kits

Buckwheat soba noodles is just one of those things. Waaaay less popular than ramen or even udon, you eat a serving of it and feel hungrier than when you started! But I’ve always had a fascination with it — the simplicity that hides layers and layers of complexity. The textural eating experience of the liquids meeting solids in your mouth — amazing. How the noodles act like the shittiest sponge, forcing you to dip your cold soba into the broth then slurp up fast. I love making that noise. Somehow that combination of a plain-looking plate of noodles plus a generic-looking dipping sauce can add up to something more than the sum of its parts. I really hate that overused phrase btw…but it really is apt in this case. If you can appreciate the quiet beauty of a Three Musketeers bar, then you can appreciate buckwheat soba noodles.

Continue reading Great Handmade Buckwheat Soba Noodles and More at Kinome Japanese Kitchen in Kits