Cafe de Waraku 和樂屋

When I first found out about this place I was super excited. Because finally you can get Japanese style pasta in Vancouver, they were the first one to open in Richmond (even though they are not opened by Japanese). This restaurant has been here for almost 4 to 5 years as I remember correctly, they used to only sell Japanese style pasta but later become a dessert café as well.

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They have special lunch/dinner combos where you can get a toast, salad/soup, pasta for around $12-16 dollars depending on which pasta you select.

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Their pasta is always cooked to al dente (perfect chewiness). I especially like their light/clear sauce. Usually toss lightly in a frying pan, great alternative to traditional Italian pasta.

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I always get a matcha latte from them because they are never sweetened. (Usually how I like my drinks, you can adjust your own liking.)

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This is a durian cheesecake. It is something that I ALWAYS ALWAYS ALWAYS get when I come here. I would not suggest it if you do not like durian (an exotic and strong aroma fruit from Thailand). But being a durian lover, I simply cannot resist it. Smooth, rich in durian flavour. There is nothing not to love about this cake.

I love this cozy quiet family run business, which I always get great service here. Never too too busy, great chat spot if you need to catch up lots.

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Maji Restaurant 麻吉台式熱炒

This new addition on Alexander Road in Richmond, BC has been creating a lot of noise recently among the locals. I went there two times before I wrote this review, because I wanted to try out a little bit more dishes before I say anything. According to a few Taiwanese friends of mine, their food is very authentic.

Here are some of the dishes that I get to try (some I do not have photos because I was seated in a very dark area.).

Ginger Chicken – chicken leg stir fried with ginger sauce and green onions

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First thing my friends noticed was that, wow that’s a lot of ginger. Which got me excited for a moment, because I was trying to imagine in my head how gingery it will taste like. But it didn’t. It tasted like soy sauce, lots and lots of ginger but none of the flavour came out onto the chicken. I can see it but cannot taste it.

Hakka-Style Pork and Squid – shredded pork belly stir fried with squid, bean curd, dried shrimps and chili

Spicy stir fry of thinly cut squid and pork shreds along with crispy dried shrimps. I liked this dish, very flavourful and full of different types of textures all in one dish. This is quite a spicy dish, I would suggest you ask for mild if you cannot handle spicy.

Shrimps with Egg – shrimps stir fried with egg and green onions

This dish was very interesting, because when I first saw it sit down on the table I immediately thought “Where is the egg?” I see lots of shrimps, then I realized it was deep fried bits of egg stir fried with the shrimp. I personally liked this dish because it gave crunchy texture to the shrimps and no slimy egg-sauce like most places would do.

Stir Fried Vegetable – season vegetable with garlic

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Pi-Egg Tofu – silken tofu drizzled with thick soy sauce, sprinkled with green onion and dried pork floss

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This is a very classic and easy Taiwanese family dish. I would recommend it if you have never had such dish anywhere else, it is one of my favourite Taiwanese homemade dish. I often make this at home when I am feeling lazy and a perfect summer dish. 🙂

Chinese Yam Chicken Soup – clear broth with fermented glutinous rice, Chinese yam, chicken leg, chicken date, goji berries and mushrooms

This soups sounds so healthy for your body that I really had to order it. Soup was not too salty and has light aroma of fermented rice. Chinese yam had been cooked so well it tasted like mash potatoe.

San-pei Squid – squid stir-fried with San-Pei sauce; tossed with basil

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If you have tired San-Pei Chicken (which means three sauce chicken) it pretty much taste exactly the same instead of chicken they used squid. I need to give prompts to the squid, they were tender and chewy at the same time. Perfectly cooked to the right tenderness.

Golden Fried Rice – friend rice with diced ham and corn

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It is basically what it is, very simple but instead of bowls of plain rice we got fried rice instead.

Overall, I have to say their stir fries are generally good but I noticed they are all very oily and full of MSG? I became super thirsty while I was having these dishes (both times I was there). But some dishes are great ideas and they are perfect with a few beer. A very traditional way of eating these dishes at late night in Taiwan.

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Yuu Japanese Tapas 優

I was here, a long time ago (like couple years ago) when it first opened. I remember long long time ago it was Chinese sweet soup place, then when it first got switched over to Yuu I gave it a try. Food was good and it was the first place I would say during that time with wide variety of Japanese dessert. After couple years I came here with lunch with a friend.

The place has changed, renovated and furnished. I also believe the owner is different? Though that I cannot be sure.

When I got the menu I noticed right away a lot of their items have changed. But they still have matcha latte with black sugar! So of course I ordered it. :3

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It was tad sweet, but just a little bit. I believe for most people it will be just right. Smooth and hot, I find this one hotter than most places I have been to. Which means it will stay warm while I am enjoying it through the meal. *happy* Because just like coffee, who likes it cooled? 😐

My friend ordered burger patty in curry sauce with rice. If you haven’t tried a dish like this, you should. This is not regular patty since it is usually hand made by the restaurant, therefore the meat tend to be looser and more tender and more juice. It also is a very popular home made dish in Japan, lots of Japanese moms would know how to make this and children usually loves it. I tried a small bit, it is similar to the one I have tried to downtown two years ago. (The restaurant is now gone and was owned by authentic Japanese.) I missed this! It was tasty, I almost wanted to trade my friend for it. 😛

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For myself I ordered teppanyaki chicken with vegetables, I didn’t feel like carb so I just had chicken and vegetables. I would say other than the chicken the vegetables are quite bland. Now as I recall eating teppankyaki in Japan there should be some sauce (or at least soy sauce) fried with ingredients first. But don’t get me wrong, it is fine cooked just right but just lack flavour.

I wouldn’t mind returning.
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Memory Corner

My friend first recommended me to go try out their ‘plant’ dessert. I know this sounds a little confusing, but you will see when you get there and order it yourself. It is named “Potted Style” on their menu. She told me how adorable they look, so I said to her sure we will go and give it a try.

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This newly opened bubble tea place across of Richmond City Hall named Memory Corner has very interesting décor inside. Heard from a friend who knows the owner that original owner is from Taiwan, they ran a small noodle place in Taiwan and now their children and grand child opens this one to continue the flavor from the past. The first thing I noticed about the store is the two giant dolls at the back. (Which I did not take photos of, but go see yourself!) They looked beautiful! There are also small little doll and authentic Japanese and Taiwanese décor throughout the restaurant. I liked the simple rustic feeling it gives.

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It was early dinner time for me, was going to order the potted style dessert (which is ice cream at the bottom with Oreo cookie crumbs on top and a little basil leaf on top to make it look like a potted plant) but the sea salt milk cap tea caught my eye. I ended up ordering the fresh fruits sea salt milk cap tea with a bowl of Taiwan style minced meat on rice.

Fresh Fruits Sea Salt Milk Cap Tea – made with fresh fruits (bits) black tea with a layer of foam on top. Let me introduce you to milk ca: this is brought over from Taiwan, very very popular new drink over taking bubble tea already couple years ago. It is made from whipping cream and sea salt. It is very interesting, they will always provide you with a straw but you should try to drink it without. So you can get the flavor of the sweet tea and a bit of the foaming milk cap along with sea salt after taste. I know it sounds weird but it is a very good combination. Try it, any flavor you like.

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My minced meat on rice took a very very long time, because they forgot my order. But the waitress was very apologetic about forgetting my mail and delivered it right away after I asked her about it. This is a very classic Taiwanese dish, easy and fast. But I like how this one isn’t too fat or oily and also has a little bit of over cooked rice bits (if you had rice cooked in clay pots by any Cantonese restaurant you will know this is gold).

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This restaurant sells authentic Taiwanese food, I would say their food is good. (I also get to try a bit of my friend’s sesame oil chicken noodle soup.) Maybe I little salty I would say but I would say all Taiwanese food is on the salty side. However if you are looking for a quick bite I would suggest some where else. Because the kitchen is ran by one lady and the food does not come out fast. You need to wait…. For a while….

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Next time try out that ice cream in pot! 🙂

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L’Opera Patisserie

I visited this cake shop several times in the last month.  I have to say I quite liked their beautiful decor! It’s perfect for photos. 😀  Tiny little cafe that only fits four tables with the looks of royalty, you do feel a little royal while you are in there. 😉

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First time I went it was fully packed with tables of high tea services. So the three of us sat at a tiny table right by the entrance ordering individual cakes and macarons to test out.

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Blueberry Tart with an adorable lady bug chocolate – like their other cakes, every one of them are decorated with care.

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Mille-Feuille (Napoliean) – Previously I have had napolieans at lots of Asian bakery places and most of the time I don’t like it. Reason is the fluffy pasty is usually inside with cream around and very little fruits and lots of almonds.. and I think you can imagine how soggy the fluffy pastry will become after it sits with the cream for a while. So I sort of had this fear towards napoliean… XD But when I saw this one I thought maybe I can give it a try. I did not regret it at all. Napolieans are always messy to eat because the fluffy crispy pastry on the outside usually shatters and this one did too. But I loved the fresh raspberries to divide the pastries not to touch the cream. I loved this!!! wpid-dsc_0222

I ordered their raspberry rose macaron, with a beautiful fragrant of rose and sweets of raspberry in the middle. I absolutely adorable this macaron. What I liked the most, they are not too sweet! I think I just let it out win all macarons that I have had so far. Sorry for cheating. 😛

Second time back for a quick tea with a girlfriend after work, once again I ordered individual cakes.

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It was a boiling summer afternoon, I just couldn’t get myself to have hot tea even though I drove. So I ordered an iced L’Opera tea – I am not sure is it because I kept poking my lemon so my L’Opera tea that is suppose to have hint of smell of chocolate just tasted like lemon iced tea. 😛
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My girlfriend’s Mango Religieuse (they actually have other flavours decorated with different colours)  – basically two pastry dome with flavoured cream inside. The mango flavour is nice and strong.

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I ordered it again… XD

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Blackberries Charlotte – look at the beautiful chocolate butterfly!!! I just love their cute edible decorations on the cake. Blackberry mousse filling layered with sponge cake with lady finger like shell. Oh how come I never tried this cake anywhere else? Delicious mousse filling!

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Finally I came back for high tea (okay, maybe it is a little obsessive :P) I can kind of see why this place is always so crowded. Their prices are not outrageous for their high tea service ($25.00/person). They have good service, the staffs are friendly and kind.

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Lots of miniature pastries in their high tea – mini blueberry tarts, caramelized cream puff (surprisingly yummy with the caramelized sugar on top), mille-feuille.

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I tried out their sesame macaron, equally yummy but I think my favourite is still raspberry rose. :3 The only thing I don’t like is the scone… it was SOOO hard. Like literally hard… I don’t really know what happened there. I will revisit, I just love this little cafe to bits!

L'Opera Patisserie on Urbanspoon

Choi’s 蔡家驰名盐焗鸡 – Empire Plaza 帝國中心

You probably won’t know or notice this place unless you know someone who does (like me) or works in this plaza and no one ever visit. 😛 Anyways this Choi’s specializes in chicken dishes and their most famous one is the this one:

Salt Baked Hand Shred Chicken on Rice

So basically how this is made (I am guessing) is that the chicken was baked with salt only and then shredding into strips by hands. Why by hands it’s because it doesn’t destroy the texture of the meat like cutting it.

It is delicious, I have eaten similar items elsewhere and it’s nothing like this one. I just couldn’t resist the tenderness of the chicken with cabbage on the rice and drizzled with sweet soy sauce. My mouth is watering just writing this. :9

It is definitely a must try!!

YVR Fairmont Afternoon Tea

I got a voucher for an afternoon tea service. I had been to one located inside Fairmont in Downtown and thought I would give this one a try. I personally had never been to the YVR Fairmont, so this is my first time. I loved the entrance to the restaurant, I just needed to state how beautiful the entrance lights are hung. Should check it out if you are ever going to be at the airport.


They do have a wide variety of tea to choose from. Or I am just very used to high tea places that offer over 30 types of tea. 😛 Since their selection is limited and very basic, I have tried the same type of tea elsewhere. So I just picked a berry tea. They taste very yummy with milk and honey. :9

After selecting our tea, we were served with fresh berries in syrup.

Though they really taste like berries in syrup that has been in the fridge for a while. Not the type of fresh I was expecting. (I was expecting fresh cut berries when we were seated. :P)


Here is our set, from top to bottom (sweet, scones and savories).

Sweet tier includes Vanilla Cream Puff, Lemon Tart, Hazelnut Chocolate Tart and Cheesecake. Every piece of sweet is a little above average, but I wouldn’t say amazing. However I must say I was afraid the cream puff to be a Costco cream puff, good it wasn’t. Very creamy vanilla filling with good pastry. I like this one. 🙂


Middle Tier – Cranberry Lemon Scones comes with whipped butter (nice thick creamy texture) and strawberry jam. I liked the butter and the scones are very fluffy (to my surprise) Wasn’t overly sweet. I quite liked it. Though I wish it was a little bit more lemony. 🙂


Savory Tier: Egg Salad Croissant Sandwich, Curry Chicken Openface Toast, Smoked Salmon Sandwich. I don’t know if it is because I already had these at the Fairmont downtown and other high tea places. This tier is nothing special to me. However the egg salad croissant sandwich is very crispy.

Overall, their tea set is a little above average and I’m sure it’ll be really nice if you sit right next to the window and watch planes take off. However I highly doubt I’ll go for afternoon tea service here again due to parking and nothing really stood out to me. There are a lot more places for high tea in Vancouver.

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Suhang Restaurant 蘇杭人家

After hearing about this restaurants numerous times from various of people and seeing line ups every time I pass by. I decided to really give it a try. So I arrived on a Saturday evening with two friends around 7:30pm, we had to wait for about 15 mins for our seats (there were also other big tables waiting but of course those are much longer wait). It’s a very tight and stuff restaurant, it was a summer day and the AC is just not strong enough. And tables are very packed right next to each other. So if you don’t like crowds, I wouldn’t suggest you go.

So we ordered a few dishes to share.

Stir fried ribs with a sweet sauce, all of these ribs have no bones (but have soft bones). All cooked to the perfect tenderness with flavour of the sauce. I really liked these ribs. They are so yummy!


Then it’s the must get stir fry Shanghai sticky rice cakes. The rice cakes were cooked just right which are soft enough but still keep the chewiness. I always like Shanghai sticky rice cakes (my mother is from Shanghai and she always tells me that these sticky rice cakes are not as easy to make as they seem). These ones also tasted extra flavorful with fermented veggie and shredded pork strips.


How can you not order these soup buns when you go to any Shanghainese restaurants? These are classic dishes that you must order and can easily tell if the restaurants’ chefs know what they are doing. These ones are good, freshly steamed with enough soup inside the dumplings. (They will always provide black vinegar but ask them for red vinegar and you won’t regret it. :))


Last we ordered these “Crab Shell” pastries for dessert. Please don’t be fooled by the name, there is no crab in this dessert. The name is only because the dessert itself looks like a crab shell. 😛 But what you want to look for is good fluffy shell (possibly seeing layers once you tear it open). And they do have it. Though I think the fillings (sweeten shredded coconuts) are just a tad bit sweet, really just a tad bit. Is acceptable if you eat with tea they provide you.

I liked the place aside from the noise from the crowds, but the staffs are friendly and food is great. Though I would probably reserve next time if I have any bigger size tables.

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Sakura Sushi

Summer is really the time for sushi. 😛 It’s hot out, so nice to eat something cold. 🙂 This place I kept going and they kept closing. Haha, and finally I went on a day that they were open so finally went in to try. This is a very small sushi place, I believe they mainly do take outs during lunch hours. Also if you visit their website, they have coupons that you can free rolls. (But you must print and bring it in, I tried to show the waitress online but she insist on me wasting paper. o.O)

So of course on a hot summer day, I ordered sashimi.

This sockeye salmon is not so sockeye haha. Maybe I was expecting something redder. But good that it wasn’t served frozen – I hate frozen sashimi with a passion.


Hamachi in Yuzu sauce – summer special. The yuzu sauce is definitely refreshing. 🙂 Hamachi was a little chewy, but still okay. Also I think the sauce is a little overwhelming. Yuzu sauce is very strong, lemon, soysauce and oil. I think they put a little too much sauce or too much lemon in their sauce, very very sour. Covered the taste of hamachi.


Spicy chopped scallop roll – woh this is spicy. Whatever hot sauce they are putting on top is pretty strong. I eat spicy but this one is almost to next level. 😛


Saba Oshi – pressed sushi with saba and a thin layer of jello(?) on top. I don’t know that clear jello-y layer is, it’s sweet but comes right off when I eat the sushi. I was hoping it’ll stay on the saba so I can eat it together. But aside from that this is really yummy.

Overall this place is decent, their prices are reasonable and good sushi. Though I felt it is a little lack of service – not rude just not attentive. I would revisit if I need a quick sushi fix in the area.

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Richmond Night Market

Every year summer night market is a must attend event. This year the new Richmond night market by River Rock Casino brings up more hype and live to the city of Richmond. There are always tons of food stands that is impossible to try all. So I picked a few ‘easy’ ones.

First off I went to Daikichi Bakudanyaki for something that would fill my stomach. I got the wasabi. Bakudanyaki is pretty much a giant takoyaki – inside it has squid, quail egg, cabbage, green onion, red ginger and corn. To get the true essence of this bakudanyaki you need to tear and stir it while it’s hot. Then mixed with sauce and mayo and dried fish flakes on top, it is truly a yummy satisfying treat. If you have had Tenku (food cart in Richmond on Charles Street) before, this is from the same creator! So quality is still good. 🙂

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Next off my friend got the Fresh Squeezed Lemonade. I had a sip of the original flavour and surprised me that it wasn’t overly sour or sweet. Very refreshing. They have jumbo size for $6.00 but that size is good enough for the whole night market round.

While my friends lined up for egg waffles from Egg Puff (20mins wait), I went to get there skewers from It’s All About Grill – garlic chicken, bacon sausage, spicy pork. I tried this place last year at the old summer night market and it was good. I have to say I was pretty disappointed this year. Half of the chicken was burnt and tried, couldn’t really taste the garlic. Bacon sausage was so salty and oily. The pork, yes it’s pork but not spicy.

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Finally got the egg waffles. My friends for strawberry and chocolate. I liked the strawberry, it was a really nice fragrant aroma – similar to a strawberry cracker. It surprised me a little bit.  🙂 Also good that they were soggy (I hate soggy egg waffles. 😦 ) But I think being a traditional Asian girl, I like the traditional egg flavoured. 😛

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Then my friends came with a banana chocolate spring roll. It was so hot (first bite :p). It was actually not bad, wasn’t overily oily. A little on the sweet side.

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I got thirsty so I went for Mangoo for a Mango papaya slush. It was nice and slushy feeling, though I really wish it taste less of the canned mango paste. I thought it was going to be fresh mango…

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At one of the many aisle corners, there was this tenpanyaki squid. Very spicy but actually pretty good. Wasn’t dried out, good chewiness to the squid. But once again I must warn, it is very spicy. Buy a drink if you are going to eat this.

Last we hit I Tofu stand for some fresh soymilk. Yes it was fresh not from a store container. One of those store grinded soy milk. I liked it! I think next time I go there, I’ll get a large one for the night. 🙂

Too much food need to go few more times to try it all.

PS: Sorry for the quality of photos, I was using phone camera. 😛

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