When we read this New York Times article about Richmond, BC’s Asian cuisine scene, we were like, “Yup, exactly!” The article, which claims that Richmond’s Asian food is the best in North America, is a straight-up love letter to the city’s dim sum, Chinese barbeque, bubble tea, and stir fries.
The fact is, Richmond does have the best Chinese food in North America. Here’s why.
First, about Richmond
Richmond, BC, is a truly fascinating place. Once a sleepy suburb of Vancouver, it’s now a genuinely vibrant multicultural centre. In fact, its population is 74% ethnically Chinese, as compared to 20% in neighbouring Vancouver.
How did this place end up as the home to so many immigrants from Taiwan, Hong Kong, and mainland China? There are many theories, but none of them are conclusive. Some say it’s because the name Richmond translates to Fu Gwai Moon, or “Fortune’s Gate”, which is perceived as a lucky name. Some say it’s because the airport right beside Richmond resembles a pearl in the mouth of a dragon. And then again, maybe the nearby airport is a big draw for immigrants who want to visit their countries of origin from time to time.
Regardless of the reasons why, Richmond is now home to a huge concentration of ethnically Chinese people. That means it also boasts 800 Asian restaurants and the best Asian food in the Vancouver, BC, area.
Why the Chinese food in Richmond is the best in North America
Quantity means quality
First of all…did we mention 800? With that many restaurants to choose from, you’d better believe the odds of getting the best dim sum in Metro Vancouver are high in Richmond. This profusion of cuisine means you get places like Jade Seafood Restaurant, with its pickled ginger with century egg and mushroom dumplings. It means you get Chef Hung Taiwanese Beef Noodle, with—surprise, surprise—their top calibre beef noodle soup. Fine Chinese dining is thriving in Richmond.
It also means variety
If you want a deep dive into Chinese cuisine, Richmond is the place. This is a place of true variety. Of course, we all want to eat the best dim sum in Metro Vancouver, but what about the obscure dishes, cuisine from off the beaten track? What if I want an oyster omelette or bird’s nest soup? If you can eat it in China, you can find it in Richmond.
It also means authenticity
Richmond is a place where you can walk around without hearing a single word of English for blocks. There is Chinese signage, for Pete’s sake! Here is where Chinese culture is well intact; people aren’t making a Western-friendly version of it. In other words, if you want authenticity, it’s here. That definitely goes for the food. We love being somewhere where we can taste flavours as tradition intended them to be. It’s thrilling.
Does Richmond have the best Chinese food in North America? A thousand times yes. It’s why, although we are based in Vancouver, we do our Authentic Asian Eats food tour in Richmond. This 3-hour walking experience takes you on a delectable and fascinating tour through the best Asian restaurants in Metro Vancouver. If you want to try that next-level dim sum, reach out!