Dumpling Trail Richmond – A Vacation For Your Mouth

A vacation for your mouth… I love that! Smart marketing campaign, Richmond BC!

A Dumpling Trail. Can you imagine my excitement when I came across it on Twitter? I still didn’t realise it was an actual campaign, I thought it was just some bloggers in Vancouver going to town with the dumplings and making up hashtags.

Then I found the website… I may have squealed with excitement. And just like that, I knew what I was doing the next day!

The website is a fantastic resource – there’s itineraries, maps, fast facts. It’s a hive of information and I wanted to devour it all! It was like they had created a marketing campaign just for me and luckily other people would enjoy it too.

I checked out the dumpling itineraries on the site and came up with my own. I’m a huge fan of Xiao Long Bao (XLB soup dumplings) which automatically added R&H Chinese to my list. I also can’t go past a spicy wonton option – those bad boys make my mouth water when they’re done right! Xi’an Cuisine was rumoured to have the best ones around so they went on the list. I had a third option too, Golden Sichuan for more spicy dumplings, water boiled ones. I never made it there though as I was so full! I recommend taking a friend so you can get through more dishes.

R&H Chinese is at Lansdowne Centre Food Court. you get off the skytrain and turn right (I turned left, oops – lucky I enjoy walking and the sun was shining) to head into the small foodcourt. You go around and around and end up in the food court. There there was a large line up for the outlet already, turns out there’s no secret that these are fab dumplings. It took all my willpower not to order a bunch of plates and just the XLB. You can watch the staff make the dumplings right in front of you by hand while you wait. The wait was worth it, the XLB was delicious and full of soup! The wrappers weren’t too thick or thin, the broth was flavorsome and steaming hot. Perfect!

I walked to my next spot, Xi’an Cuisine at Richmond Public Markets.  It’s a very unassuming place. You have no idea about the buzz on the inside from the outside. It’s a plain building, I thought I was in the wrong place! You enter, go up some stairs and come out in an open spaced hawker-style market, bustling with people and stalls and eateries. I ordered my spicy wontons (again, so many things I wanted to try) and waited, people watching. These are hands down the best spicy wontons I have eaten. And believe me, I have eaten soooo many spicy wontons! They were soft and silky with a delicious filling and the sauce, oh the sauce!!! I actually drank it from my spoon when I was finished. It was both spicy and sweet, not too hot though. I was in a very happy place right there.

A very happy place and a very full place. I couldn’t eat any more if I tried. That was the end of the dumpling trail for me unfortunately, although fortunately for my waistline.

Awesome tourism idea – I loved it and wish I had more time to sample the entire list of twenty!

Check out their website here and create your own dumpling trail – awesome day out for a group of friends who love those little parcels of goodness that we call dumplings.

Last weekend in BC

To celebrate my last weekend in Vancouver, I left. Haha I ended up in Whistler with three of my fave people, Jay, Ka Lei & Kieran.

We hired an apartment (no small feat when it’s a long weekend and you’re booking last minute) in the village for Saturday and Sunday night – yay for Family Day stat holiday – and took the beast down Saturday.

Such a gorgeous drive from Vancouver to Whistler, I spent most of my time taking photos.

Apartment was lovely, with a fire and hot tub, even though we never used the hot tub it was nice to know it was there. Ka Lei couldn’t be convinced to hop in nude.

Saturday and Sunday were gorgeous days, clear blue skies. We just hung out in the village drinking warm beverages and looking around. Apart from Sunday. We stayed in bed all day almost after a massive night on Saturday.

My friend Sunny and his wife, Carol ended up being in town Saturday night. I should know this means it will be a big night! We met them for dinner at The Mix in the village – great place for cocktails and then went on to Ric’s Bar & Grill for dinner.

We shared dip, oysters and Caesar salad then I chose the 6oz filet with a lobster tail cooked rare mmm amazing.

Next up, Barefoot Bistro, or rather the ice bar next to it. We were given massive coats to put on for the freezing temperature in the room, which probably matched the temperature outside and had vodka tasting. I was half cut by this stage and evidently we were all being a ruckus, not listening and taking a bunch of photos, as intoxicated people do. Only thing was old mate, the one running the tasting got pretty upset about it all. I did three of the shots and left the fourth, that’s enough straight vodka for me!

Buffalo Bills was fun as always, lots of dancing. We partied on until it shut then grabbed a pizza at Fat Tony’s – heaven in a box. Well in my intoxicated state it was anyway!

Sunday we spent mainly in bed around about 3pm. We all needed to relax. We then discovered Pure Bread on a walk around the village – amazing!

We had a delicious platter at home and had a few drinks. The cards came out and suddenly it was 11pm! Such a good night.

Ka Lei broke out in some crazy rash, she was probably just allergic to losing! Just kidding Ka Lei, I know you’ll read this haha.

Monday was a public holiday. We checked out & wandered around the village, it was snowing heavily and watching the snow flakes fall was gorgeous.

We just wandered from store to store, grabbing hot drinks. Started with a chai latte and finishing with a mulled wine.

Lunch was a bit of a disaster, the places we chose weren’t open so we decided to eat in Squamish (which I have taken to calling Sasquatch) but due to heavy snowfall, treacherous road conditions and an ill, Jay we went straight through.

The drive back was a contrast to the way there. The gorgeous green and blue traded in for a beautiful blanket of white.

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Rodney’s Oyster House Yaletown

We got in just in time for the ‘Low Tide’ menu.

We ordered a dozen raw oysters, the steamed mussels, garlic butter prawns and oysters Rockefeller.

Bread was served first – baked with cranberries, scrumptious. Can’t fault anything we ordered, it was all delish!

Had a pinot noir, it was average but it was a cheap one. It was poured in a short cup too – unusual.

The best thing is the atmosphere. I actually asked if I could get the soundtrack when I left it was so good! I love the layout of the place, we sat at the bar and it’s very social dining.

Great T-shirts you can purchase too! “‘Suck me off’ … the half shell at Rodney’s Ouster Bar”

Great place, I would def go back again!

I’m on a bread ban however so I’m writing this in the cardio bike to work it off – multitasking!

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Rodney's Oyster House on Urbanspoon

Urban Thai Bistro Yaletown

Dinner with the Ceola’s was at Urban Thai Bistro in Yaletown.

Conveniently a block from my house!

My cocktail was amazing. Almond colada – like a piña colada but with amaretto and all coconut juice instead of pineapple – amazing.

Appies were great – we got two platters of four with all different plates to share.

My entree however, wast that great. I ordered Pad See Ew, my fave, but it tasted like someone dropped a container of pepper over it.

Everybody else enjoyed theirs, Jay’s yellow curry was incredible.

Go lighter on the pepper next time eh, guys!

Urban Thai Bistro on Urbanspoon
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We’ll just have a quiet drink.

Famous last words.

Spontaneous nights always seem to pan out to be some of the best.

Last night was one of them.

We decided to go for a quick drink and appies after an average day at work.

We parked and my boss, the shopoholic she is, asked if we could nip into Hollywood Boutique next to the Yaletown Skytrain. I obliged and she ended up purchasing a gorgeous green sparkly dress for New Years.

After much indecision we ended up at the Flying Pig. One glass of wine turned into a bottle and one amazing dish turned into four.

Part way through the evening I realised I was missing something. My bag. My entire purse. Filled with everything I need. Including my cards, ID, contacts and my keys. I ran back to the shop but it was closed. With a heavy heart I went back and told Yvette. By now she was crashing at my house… But without keys we couldn’t get it.

Of course my phone was dead but I eventually got through to my roomie Scott who was I’m Kits at a bday party as would be at least another hour.

With thy in mind Yvette suggested we check out The George for cocktails since I hadn’t been there. The place was dead, only one other guy there. Luckily the bar manager, Andy, took a liking to us and upon hearing out horror story shared a shot with us.

We ordered cocktails and Andy warned us that at 10.30pm 100 people were going to show up. We laughed at him.

11pm we’re giving Andy crap about all these people not showing up when low and behold 100 people waltz in the door! It was part of an annual scotch train pub crawl and they were all quite merry. I even knew a handful of them.

We ended up crawling into bed about 1am rather merry ourselves!

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