Posts in category "- Richmond"

Cora’s Breakfast and Lunch

**Full Disclosure: My friends are the owners of the Cora Richmond location and invited a couple of us to check out this restaurant. The only things that were comped were our drinks**

Cora Breakfast and Lunch is a restaurant chain started by, you guess it, Cora. It first started in Montreal as a family joint and now has expanded to over 120 franchised restaurants. Cora’s philosophy and influence behind her food is variety and healthy quality ingredients. Her menu comprises of dishes that are not your traditional family breakfasts….let’s say some are on the creative hectic side.
When we went, it had just opened but it was already experiencing the crowds and lineups.

At this point, they were still ironing out operations and efficiencies but I’m glad to hear that in the last month or so they’ve greatly improved.  When you enter the big room, you see the hustle and bustle of the large kitchen.  The decor is brightly painted in the signature sunny yellow and decorated with colourful childlike signs….all aspects that point to a very friendly family restaurant.

I didn’t bother taking a picture nor will be documenting my dish because I custom ordered a egg white crepe with a side of fruit.  This awfully boring breakfast was inline with my current health fix. However, I happily snapped pictures of what my friends ate and snagged a few bites.  As you skimmed through the menu, you could tell a lot of their breakfast and lunch items would make any hungry trucker happy.  What I mean is that these plates of food are massive and probably would keep you full until the next day…or at least to dinner that night.  One friend ordered one of their classics: the 1990′s Harvest

It’s literally a hefty plate of a cinnamon-raisin brioche made a la French Toast style then topped with sunny side egg and bacon.  To make you feel less guilty, the other half of the plate was filled with enough fruit to fulfill your daily quota.

Another ordered a sweet crepe jam packed with strawberries, bananas, and chocolate sauce topped with whipped cream.  It was as big as a purse clutch and I was amazed that my friend was able to finish it.

Quoting one friend, Cora’s is few steps above a Denny’s with its vast selection of somewhat familiar breakfast and lunch fares…and with the prices to match.  For sure, it’s not the type of place you could comfortably stumble into after an intoxicated night at the club ;-) One big positive is that they kind-of keep its promise of promoting health with the generous portions of fruit, fresh smoothies, and many healthy options.

Cora’s Breakfast and Lunch
170 – 11380 Steveston Highway
Richmond, BC
Cora's Breakfast & Lunch South Richmond on Urbanspoon

Tsim Chai Noodles

Tsim Chai Noodles is an simple unassuming Cantonese style noodles and congee house. It’s tucked away in a plaza on Westminster Highway filled with pretty decent grocery stores, bbq meat shop, and other specialty stores.

I’ve been to Tsim Chai Noodles for several years now but what makes this little spot special is its noodle soups, especially their award winning wonton noodles. It’s so good that it won an award in the first annual Chinese Restaurant Awards. I guess I took it for granted as it was just another restaurant we would frequent when we’re in Richmond…but let’s take a closer look.

We went with the basic and ordered the Beef Brisket noodles and Beef Brisket and Wonton Noodle soups

In both, the beef brisket was pretty tender with nice fat too it. Both bowls’ broth is a bit darker than the clearer broth you would get if you ordered the regular wonton noodles. The standout that won this place a Gold comes down to their wonton. I know wonton can be found anywhere and just seems like the staple dumpling ..but like a xiao long bao each place has its unique take on it and what defines a good quality wonton. For a wonton, it’s the skin, the filling and the prawn to pork ratio. Here the skin is thin and delicate (a good thing), wonton was almost size of a golf ball, and had chunks of prawn. The noodles were thinner than most places and had more of a crunch upon bite instead of chewiness.

I caved and ordered the spicy deep fried chicken knees

It was super crispy and crunchy. What I liked about these particular deep friend morsels is that it was flavourful and spicy but not overly salty.

Since it’s in a small plaza, it does get incredibly packed in terms of parking. If you want to check out this cheap little joint, should actually park at the Price Mart parking lot and walk over (think you can do that legally ;)

Tsim Chai Noodles
8251 Westminster Hwy
Tsim Chai Noodles 沾仔記 on Urbanspoon

Pearl Castle

Pearl Castle use to be the king of bubble tea cafes in Richmond. But in the past few years, more bubble tea cafes have popped up and staking their claim in the territory. I’ve been to this Pearl Castle for a few years now and have noticed the shift in popularity. It still gets the crowd for sure but not as much as before. We headed there a few weeks ago just for old times sake before some shopping in Richmond.

The room is still bright, clean, and modern. There was a mix crowd of families and young kids happily eating and chatting away over their pots and cups of teas.

To indulge my craving for fried food, the crunchy deep fried chicken knee was ordered

They do remind me of popcorn chicken but with a bit more cartilage.  It’s salty, a bit peppery, and just addictive.  With one chopstick pick up, you pop it in your mouth and few a chews it’s gone..and then you go in for more.

To continue with the deep fried them, we then went for the deep fried tofu

The bite size tofu was easy to eat too.  The tofu was a medium soft texture and was very crunchy but felt the batter was a tad too much.  I favour the deep fried tofu type where the tofu is much softer and when fried the batter comes out more like a crisp rather than a crunch.  This particular dish was accompanied with a sweet tangy soy sauce and small serving of kimchi.

Oh and the grease continued.  Next we ordered a lunch set to share

This very deep fried piece of sole laid in a sweet and sour sauce topped with green onions.  Maybe it was the intention but the fish was so deep fried, you couldn’t really taste the meat.  As part of this set, it included a side selection of pickled vegetables and a bowl of rice.

To end your meal, we finally went for something different: the House Special Beef Noodle Soup

The beef, which I’m guessing is beef brisket, was very tender and not too chewy.  The broth was very flavourful as it tasted like it was well seasoned beef stock.

There’s a number of Taiwanese / Hong Kong style cafes in Richmond but Pearl Castle has been most people’s standby for lunch.  Next time around I’m going to treat myself to one of their many popular milk teas

Pearl Castle
3779 Sexsmith Rd
Pearl Castle 圓香茶坊 (Sexsmith) on Urbanspoon