Dim Sum at Sun Sui Wah
I love Dim Sum. It’s the perfect way to gather a gang of good folk and sample a wide range of snack-sized plates. There is a catch, however. Much like grocery shopping, if you do it on an empty stomach, you may buy too much. With four empty stomachs, it’s inevitable.
Sun Sui Wah is amongst the vanguard of Vancouver Dim Sum restaurants. If not the best, it is certainly one of the most popular. On a Sunday afternoon the place is teeming with several hundred diners and a small army of servers.
Upon entering the room I was stunned at the sheer size of it and the vast amount of people. Luckily, one of my friends keeps his head shaved so it wasn’t a problem finding our table. Gotta say, so far that’s the best reason for keeping a clean melon that I’ve come across.
Along with a colorful, pictorial version, there is also a menu checklist.
With a light and crispy taro exterior, the inside is a mix of ground pork, mushroom and pine nuts. The version here is somewhat average. Although the wrap was nice and crunchy, the inside of it (the wrap) was a bit too pasty. The filling decent, a bit bland.
Gau Choi Gau (Pan-fried Shrimp and Chive Dumpling). These tightly wrapped bundles were fantastic…a healthy portion of fresh, snappy shrimp with a load of full-flavored oniony chive. After a good steam, they’re given a sear on their bottoms for a nice balance of textures.
Our next selection was a duo of Cheong Fan (Rice Rolls).
The beef version had a bit more personality, cilantro-wise.
Dishes are coming fast and furious now. Our rather small table-top is hitting its max and we’re not even at the half-way point, not even close. Fortunately, our gang had enough power-eating skills to match the onslaught.
The Pai Gwat Shu Mai (Steamed Spare-Rib in Black Bean Sauce) were a ten on the flavor scale and about a five on the quality scale. The meat-to-bone ratio too much in favor of the bone. Trying to pry off the bits of pork amidst the excess fat was one arduous and messy process. On the bright side, the phenomenal sauce was great for flavor-boosting other dishes.
Some really good Sing Chow Mai Fun (Singapore Style Fried Vermicelli). Lots of crisp prawn, bits of BBQ Pork, a bunch of julienned veg tossed in light curry. A slightly bigger platter would’ve been nice but considering our ever-shrinking table space, this worked just fine.
A savory mix of pork, mushrooms and glutinous rice is seasoned with ginger and soy then wrapped in a lotus leaf. It’s then steamed, infusing the rice with the fragrance of the leaf. This version was delicious but a bit shy on the pork.
I’m starting to get full just writing this! By this point the chopsticks feel about a pound each. Gotta plow on though…the hits keep a comin’.
Gānbiān Sìjìdòu (Green Beans with Minced Pork). All around the table, this dish was a home-run. Smoky beans and minced pork swimming in garlic heaven. Absolutely brimming with Wok Hei, this dish could in no way have been improved on. Sensational.
As if all these dishes weren’t enough, we were informed that we
should have to have dessert. After much groaning and moaning it became apparent that no was not an option. Alrighty then, Natty. Bring it on!
Even better were the Mango Pancakes.
Gotta say, that was an insane amount of food! Some great, some good, some meh. Considering the scope of the room and the vast sea of diners, the service and speed of delivery was very good. Being short on time, we packed all this into ninety minutes. A feast like this should be spread out over three hours, at least. Naptime, now.