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A Photo Guide to Dim Sum in Vancouver

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Dim sum, or “Chinese tapas,” is an experience to share with friends-and-family. Experience dim sum in Vancouver and witness a lively and jovial energy, mixed with an array of tantalizing smells.

Dim sum might be best simplified as Chinese tapas that are only served during the morning and early afternoon. For flawless synchronization of service and food quality, Kirin has won the “Best Dim Sum in Vancouver” for six consecutive years. This is a true feat, as Vancouver is regarded as the best place to eat Chinese food outside of China.

The idea of dim sum originates in ancient China, as a relaxing break for the tired travellers journeying along the Silk Road. Dumplings, meatballs, rice cakes, and pastries are served on small plates in threes or fours; it’s a refreshing, interactive, social twist on brunch!

Traditionally, dim sum is served on rolling carts that make their way through the dining room. Yet, the price of real estate in Vancouver is so high, that restaurants choose to fill their space with additional tables, rather than leave a pathway for food carts. As such, you’ll need to know what to order, just by looking at the menu.

We’ve put together a visual guide to dim sum in Vancouver as a mouth-watering, hunger-inducing, foodie-empowering motivator to get you to the table!

Quick Facts about Kirin Restaurant:


  • Speak both English and Chinese
  • Are friendly, passionate people. They are more than happy to recommend items for you, and are delighted to show you “the best of” if it’s your first time at dim sum.


  • Is in both English and Chinese
  • Has accurate descriptions of what you’ll be getting. You might not think this deserves it’s own bullet point, but believe me, it’s an asset that not every dim sum restaurant has.


  • Is beautiful. With high ceilings and natural light, the space is welcoming and bright.


  • Doesn’t come on a cart. This means that everything is made-to-order at Kirin. It comes to you, piping hot and fresh.
  • Several plates are meant to be shared. Use 4-5 plates between two people as a general guide.
  • Tip for bonus cultural points: The person sitting closest to the tea pours the tea for the entire table, and then for themselves.

Barbeque Pork Pastry. A personal favourite!

dim sum in vancouver

Taro Root Puff. Only good if executed well. The ones at Kirin are notoriously worthwhile – crispy, flaky and light! A savoury filling of ground pork hides within.

dim sum in vancouver

Pork Soup Dumplings, aka Xiao Long Bao. Eat it with a spoon – there’s soup in there!


Vegetarian Spring Rolls

dim sum in vancouver

Wontons in spicy sauce

dim sum in vancouver

Shrimp Cake with chives

dim sum in vancouver

XO Sauce – a Chinese delicacy. A mild, spicy blend of dried scallops, dried shrimps, chili peppers, garlic and oil.

dim sum in vancouver

Chicken and Abalone Steamed Buns

dim sum in vancouver

Beef Balls on dried bean curd

dim sum in vancouver

White Lotus Mooncake. The orange sphere is a salted egg yolk, giving you a sweet and salty combination.

dim sum in vancouver

Black Sesame Glutinous Rice Balls with Crushed Peanuts

dim sum in vancouver

Egg Tart – A sweet ending that’s an absolute must!

 dim sum in vancouver

 There you have it. You’re ready to go forth and enjoy dim sum in Vancouver with confidence!

Kirin Restaurant
1172 Alberni St
(604) 682-8833
Monday – Friday: 11:00am-2:30pm; 5:00pm-10:30pm
Saturday – Sunday & Public Holidays: 10:00am-2:30pm; 5:00pm-10:30pm

over 2500 five-star reviews

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