10% Off Combos Tuesdays

A Ri Rang Tofu House 阿里郎嫩豆腐
140 - 5960 Minoru Blvd Richmond, BC (604) 285-5960 

A Ri Rang Tofu House 阿里郎嫩豆腐 on Urbanspoon

Came here with V one day after work. Was really impressed with the interior, really simple and clean with a touch of traditional decor.

After going through the menu, we got the bulgogi and seafood + beef stew combo ($16) to share thinking it would be big, turns out we were very wrong. The combos we saw on the menu compared the the actual dish was significantly smaller in size. As for the appetizers, there was literally less than a spoonful of bean sprouts on the appetizer plate.

The seafood and beef stew (medium spicy) was more spicy than "seafood", in fact you could barely taste the seafood at all. The combo came with an uncracked egg, not knowing what to do we asked the waitress who kindly told us that it is to be put into the soup. By the time we added the egg to the soup the pot was no longer hot and bubbling and the egg was left undercooked. Moreover there was very little beef in the soup that it'd probably be equivalent to one slice of hot pot beef.

When we went to pay, the man subtly hinted that we should have ordered 2 separate dishes/combos, saying that the combo was actually for one person.

Price:  $$

ConclusionThe frugal me wanted to come here in the first place because it sounded like a good deal and it just happened to be a Tuesday. Maybe I'll give it another try sometime down the road, but would probably not order a combo again.

Best Mediterranean Food

Cioppino's Mediterranean Grill 
 1133 Hamilton St Vancouver, BC (604) 688-7466 | www.cioppinosyaletown.com

Cioppino's Mediterranean Grill on Urbanspoon

Came here for A's birthday a while ago... will let the pictures speak for themselves because words can not describe how good the food was.

Digby Scallops
Oven roasted , sweet tomato confit , tender artichokes
This dish was the most delightful in my opinion, as you can see it came with 3 big scallops. With the pairing of either the sweet tomato confit, tender artichokes or both, each bite had its own unique taste.

Beef Carpaccio
 Sliced AAA Canadian beef , Parmigiano , Harry’s bar mustard dressing
I'm a big fan of Japanese beef carpaccio, so this was definitely a must try when we saw it on the menu. Unlike Japanese beef carpaccio, this was more rich and savoury. A wonderful start to a wonderful meal.

Foie Gras
I have to say that foie gras has never been something I go crazy for, partially because I dislike the powdery texture of cooked liver. But then again that was before I tried the foie gras at Cioppino's. The foie gras here is cooked to perfection. There was nothing powdery about it, in fact from the minute it entered your mouth it melts and disappears, leaving you with the sweet aftertaste of the sauce. One order may not be enough.

Boar Meat (Special of the day)
The words boar meat sounded so intriguing as it is very rare to find it served at a restaurant, so we just had to try. To our surprise it was unlike what we thought it would be (tough meat, smelly) it was soft and delicate with the right fat-to-meat ratio - Another must try  

Linguine - Atlantic half lobster , tomato-cream-lobster sauce
Was very impressed with the size of the lobster. The lobster to pasta ratio was perfect and you can clearly tell that the lobster was not a side and was in fact a part of the meal as a whole.

Classic Lobster Bisque - served with Pacific crab-apple-celery root rémoulade
This is another must have at Cioppino's, the richest most savoury lobster bisque I've had so far.

Price:  $$$$

Conclusion: Good food, wonderful service, lovely atmosphere. What more can a girl ask for?  Undoubtedly one of the pricier restaurants out there, but surely it is worth every penny.

*** Please note that items with a "*" are items I was too hungry to take pictures of, but reviewed anyways. 

Uncle Lu

Uncle Lu 安可盧萬巒豬腳
3779 Sexsmith Rd Richmond, BC (604) 370-0250

Uncle Lu 安可盧萬巒豬腳 on Urbanspoon
To be honest, based on what it looks like from the outside, I really thought this was a fancy tea shop for the longest time. Which is why I never bothered to try it. Until recently.

Uncle Lu aka sister store of Corner 23 is always packed with people. At times you really have to seat yourself, and the food takes a while to come out, so I would not suggest coming here if you are in a rush.

They tend to alternate their teas (sometimes within the hour which bugs me as I do not appreciate drinking a mixture of red and green tea, I am a food purist in that sense) but I absolutely love the aroma of their red tea.

Below is a compilation of the foods we have eaten as I have been here too many times.

Chicken With Thai Style Spicy Chili Sauce
I expected some special Thai sauce made in house, but this was literally the Thai Spicy Chili Sauce you can buy at the market

Fried Pork With Sweet and Sour Sauce

Taiwanese Style Pork Sausage

Sliced Pork With Garlic Sauce
Classic Taiwanese Dish! :)

Wan Luan Pork Hock
First time having this dish so I can't compare it to much, but very well marinated and the sauce definitely hit the spot.

Chicken With Three Spice Sauce
My All Time Favourite, Really impressed as I can say Uncle Lu is probably one of my top 3 go to places for this dish

Malaysian Fever

Ipoh Asian House
2128 E Hastings St Vancouver, BC (604) 251-3322

IPOH Asian House on Urbanspoon

Finally got the chance to come here after hearing my parents rave about Ipoh for months.

As a family, we usually go out for Vietnamese food, but recently they've caught the Malaysian fever. We have been having Malaysian food every week now.

Anyways, Ipoh has a really simple modern look.

In short: Chinese owned, Chinese chef, BIG portions, affordable prices :)

Quick snap of the menu

Fish maw soup
Not bad at all! Lots of fish maw and enough for everyone to have seconds. (4 of us)

Crab (Forgot which style of crab)
We were supposed to dip the crab in "sauce" (the paste of sauce leftover from cooking), when asked "what sauce?" the waitress brought over curry for dipping.

We also had Roti Canai, a veggie dish and $1 Chicken (their special at the time).

* The rest of the pictures are MIA as the owner of this blog may have been too hungry.

Price:  $$

Conclusion: Nice place to go for lunch/dinner. A good alternative to taiwanese bubble tea houses. Go for their big portions, but don't expect to have authentic, authentic Malaysian food here.

Oats, Crackers, Cookies and More!

Oh where do I start...
Snacking has been a guilty pleasure of mine ever since I could remember, 
When I'm bored or stressed or simply hungry I would snack on pretty much anything that looks appetizing.

So when I saw that Narin's was offering an opportunity to review their line of Scottish oat crackers I could not wait to sign up.
Since receiving the product samples, I have gone from snacking on instant noodles and junk food to nibbling cookies and crackers from Narin's. They have a great selection of crackers and cookies that contain oats (for those who don't know, oats are a great source of fibre which we all need in our diets, more benefits listed below). I have never been a huge fan of vegetables, especial those with little to no sauce or dressing so these crackers and cookies is a wonderful substitute for me. And the only time I eat oats is in oatmeal raisin cookies, or granola bar.. you se the trend.

According to The Whole Grains Council, Some benefits of oats include:


Information above was taken directly from The Whole Grains Council website. Read more about this in detail here.
Opening the box, I noticed that Narins products were packed in smaller portions, I  really love this as it is so convenient to take out and share with the people around me. This is also a good way to prevent your snacks from going stale if you forget to eat it and can help in portioning your snack size so you over eat (or so I don't over eat).
The cookies came in three different flavours:
- Dark Chocolate Chip
- Mixed Berries
- Stem Ginger

They were not too sweet and made a perfect afternoon snack. I did not put any toppings on this as it had enough flavouring, but you may add jam or cream cheese if you like .
There were four kinds of crackers:
- Scottish Oat Crackers Organic
- Scottish Oat Crackers Cheese
- Scottish Oat Crackers Roughly Milled
- Crisp Baked Oat Crackers with Sunflower Seeds

 These did not have overpowering flavours, which makes them the ideal candidate to put toppings on. 
Some of my favourite toppings are:
- Blue cheese and honey
- Tuna and mayonnaise topped with caviar
- Cheese, tomato and balsamic vinegar 

* Trugs Gourmet Garlic and Onion Jam (It maybe smelly at first but its so, so good)
If you do happen to try these combinations, please comment below. I would love to hear from you all!

Don't forget to Like Narin's on Facebook and tweet them (@NarinsOatCakes)


Hu Tong
2942 W Broadway Vancouver, BC (604) 559-6622

Hu Tong 胡同北京家庭菜 on Urbanspoon

It was date night, and K wanted to take me to this place that had good Hainanese Chicken on Broadway, but as it turns out the place was closed so we decided to go for a stroll.

That was when we came across Hu Tong, The exterior reminded us of those "old towns" in Taiwan, we didn't think much about it but the smell was what caught our attention. If you weren't hungry to begin with, the aroma of the food will make you hungry. K and I both have never had traditional Beijing food so we decided to give it a go.

K is a fan of really traditional Chinese decor, if he had a house this may be what he would want it to look like.

Bacardi cups for water? Why not?!

Spinach with Peanuts and Sesame Seeds
The waitress made it sound so saucy, but in reality it was kind of sour and did not see any sauce, was upsold.

Lamb Hot Pot
We were told this may not be enough for  people, but it was more than enough for us, intact we had leftovers to take home. 

Price:  $$

ConclusionCan be a little pricey, but everywhere you go for "traditional food" is a little pricey. I would most likely come back again sometime.

Hidden Gem in Kerrisdale

George's Pizza
6109 West Blvd Vancouver, BC | (604) 266-0411

George's Pizza on Urbanspoon

So I've been hanging out in Kerrisdale for many years now and for some odd reason I have never noticed George's pizza until recently. Maybe it's because it's located in the outskirts of Kerrisdale away from where all the shopping is, but I'm telling you if you're looking to get away from Vancouver for an hour or two this is the place to go!

It's friendly staff knows exactly what to suggest for you, and the interior of the restaurant accompanied by the Italian-esque melody being played in the background places you right in the middle of Europe.

Spinach Tortellini
Never been much of a pesto/green sauce fan, but if I had to choose, this would be my favourite green sauce pasta.

1/2 Greek 1/2 Hawaiian
Please don't make me choose between the two, they are both so good!

Dinner Special of the Day: Penne with Chicken in Rose Sauce
K doesn't like red sauce pastas, but he loved this one, couldn't stop talking about it for days.

George's Special (minus green peppers)

Price:  $$$
Food:     ☆ 

Conclusion: Usually I would say something along the lines of I will be coming back. But in this case, I have already been back.

We probably stayed here for hours forgetting the time, the staff here as so amazingly friendly, I swear I brought friends here and stayed for over four hours (until closing) and even though all the customers already left and they were closing up, they did not come to our table to ask us to leave once. We had such a good time here we lost track of time and that has never happened anywhere else.

Portland: Via Tribunaili

Via Tribunali
36 SW 3rd Ave Portland, OR (503) 548-2917

Via Tribunali on Urbanspoon

So my pizza craving took me to Old Town, Portland. We were on our way to Voodoo Doughnut when we learnt about their 45 min wait, so we decided we should probably eat before we go wait in line. We chose this place as it looked authentic, with a stone oven for pizza. 

Via Tribunali - Specialita' Della Casa 
(provola, ricotta, rapini, sausage, cherry tomatoes, arugula, fresh mozzarella, basil, grana padano)

Quatro Stagioni 
(prosciutto cotto, oven-roasted mushrooms, salame piccante, pomodoro, fresh mozzarella, basil, grana padano )

We also had Bruchetta, however I did not get a chance to snap a picture.

Price:  $$
Food:     ☆ 

Conclusion: Best pizza I've had! We came here not knowing the size of the pizza, when we asked if 2 was enough for the 3 of us we were told that each one was made for 1 person. We were not that hungry so we got 2. It was still too much, we were all stuffed, leaving no room for doughnuts.

The Via Tribunali was a big surprise, we did not to find cheese and veggies stuffed and wrapped inside the pizza. It is rare to find salad pizzas, this has to be one of my all time favourites. 

The Quatro Stagioni was so different from the pizzas I'm used to. It was so thin I could not pick it up and bite, I had to eat with a fork and knife. Don't get me wrong, I am not complaining because it was just as unique and equally good!

Lastly the waiter was so kind! The food came out really fast and he kept walking by to check on us. (I eat in Richmond a lot and good service is hard to come by)

Portland: Sen Yai

Sen Yai
3384 SE Division St Portland, OR (503) 236-3573

Sen Yai on Urbanspoon

Was convinced to come here after learning about the 2.5 hour wait at Pok Pok. After a long day we were tired and hungry and on top of that it was pouring outside. We were all not willing to wait especially for 2.5 hours. 

Browsing on my phone I found someone on Foursquare that said Sen Yai was "Even better than Pok Pok". Plus it is owned by the same owners of Pok Pok, so can't be bad right?

Upon walking in, the restaurant was quite full, however there was no wait. We were approached by their friendly staff and was seated immediately. There was such a big selection of food on their menu it was almost impossible to decide on which one to choose. The exotic food names were rather difficult to pronounce too (I must give props to our server, he had to pretty much read the whole menu out for us)

In the end, we stuck to their best sellers. And Thai Ice Tea, because its so amazingly good. I'm really sensitive to caffeine and can easily get an allergic reaction, but I always down for thai iced tea, extra syrup of course. Everyone just stares at me as if I was a mad woman whenever I ask for it to be extra sweet, I just need my sugar fix sometimes.

Kuaytiaw Reua "Boat Noodles"


Phat Thai Ruam

Thai Ice Tea

Price:  $$
Food:     ☆ 

Conclusion: Best Phat Thai I've ever had and really nice soups. Want to come back again as soon as possible.

Oh Tom Ford, You Complete All My Outfits!

I've never been a lip stick kind of gal. In fact most of the time I prefer to stick to neutral colours, like pinks and nudes. I find it really frustrating because as much as I like nude lipsticks, they don't like me! They don't complement my skin tone or my face one bit, because my skin colour is darker nude lips often makes me look ill.

And so I decided to invest in a good formulated lipstick. After reading Temptalia's blog post on Tom Ford lipsticks, I decided I'd give it a go and brought home Violet Fatale. I was told it had the best stain in their whole collection (aside from bleach orchid, which was discontinued), and frankly, I've always wanted lips that were slightly purple and dark (almost poisonous). Anyways to give you an idea of how long this stain lasted... I applied an even layer over my lip in the morning around 10:30am-11am, woke up the next morning with the half the stain still on my lips.

Violet Fatale looks much darker than it actually is.

- - - - - - - - - -  edit

Confession: I loved Tom Ford's formula so much I out to buy another one! Welcome home 'Flamingo'!

Hidden Gem: Penang Delight

Penang Delight (馬來檳城美食)
1316 W 73rd Ave. Vancouver, BC (604) 559-9898

Penang Delight Cafe 馬來檳城美食 on Urbanspoon

It was D and V's idea to come here for dinner, I had no idea what to expect, in fact I've been living in the area for over 10 years and didn't even know this restaurant existed because its was so hidden!

We arrived to find the whole restaurant packed! All Malaysian people. Thats how you know its good Malaysian food. As packed as the restaurant was the staff was so fast paced that one minute customers walk in and the next out.

The interior of the restaurant reminded us all of Asia, once we placed our order the food came out within 10-15 minutes. I was very impressed.

Grass Jelly Soya Bean


Cantonese Chow Fun

Hainanese Chicken

Penang Prawn Meehoon and Mee (Spicy)

Deluxe Curry Platter (Curry Chicken, Rendang Beef, Rendang Lamb)

(Forgot the name of this, but the fried part is mashed taro and on top is stir fry)

KL Hokkian Mee

Price:  $$$

Conclusion: I loved the atmosphere and the quick service, but certain dishes can be a little pricey.