I'm from Southern California (born and raised in San Diego, uni in LA area) and my friend is from Georgia. We're both planning to visit Vancouver July 27-30/31 as part of a Vancouver/Seattle trip and we're so excited!
Since he's from Georgia, I really want him to get a good taste of East and Southeast Asian food, particularly Chinese food and those cuisines non-existent west of the Rockies (i.e. Burmese, Filipino, Cambodian, etc). It's his first time to the West Coast (of either Canada or the US) and I really want to make a culinary impression on him.
After a copious amount of time researching on this board, guides, yelp reviews, urbanspoon, and the like I wanted to get more insight from you all on my planned culinary tour of sorts, sorted by cuisine type below. To note: we won't have a car, but are more than happy to travel the Canada Line to Richmond from our airbnb place around Davie St. / West End.
Dim Sum/HK style seafood - Looking at all the various comments and reviews I'm inclined to go to both Kirin and Sun Sui Wah, one for dim sum and one for dinner. For dinner, price is really no object (I am planning to order some geoduck and/or dungeness crabs), but I'm wondering which one would be best for dinner? Or should I try out Jade or Dynasty instead (though not Sea Harbour as I kind find that in LA)? Also, if I go to Kirin (likely Richmond or downtown locations), do they accept your reservation on the dot or do you still have to wait?
Shanghainese/Taiwanese - All the guide books and reviews seem to point to Shanghai River but the 'hounds seem to prefer Dinesty. Given that we can walk closer to Dinesty's Robson location, would that be better?
HK Style Western Food/Cha Chaan Teng - Okay, so I know the food at HK style cafes aren't the best, but I really want to show him kind of a slice of what I grew up with. Likely I'll order Hainanese Chicken Rice or HK style pork chop, thick toast, and HK style milk tea. Reading Sherman's blog is looks like Alleluia Cafe in Richmond or the Boss in Chinatown would have both decent food and public rail transit accessibility. Any other recommendations?
Burmese - It looks like I can find decent Burmese food in Vancouver but I have no idea if any of the food is accessible by train and/or foot. I am willing to taxi/uber/etc for good food if there's a Burmese place that's great, especially with mohinga, which a family friend of mine made for my family when I was a kid.
Filipino - Again, it looks like there's decent Filipino food. I know Filipino restaurants are few in the first place (even In San Diego with the many Filipinos) and even restaurants are not as good as the homemade meal, but I would love to introduce my friend to pancit bihon, palabok, lumpia, bistek, adobo, sisig, etc. Suggestions?
Vietnamese style Chinese (Hoa or Teochow) - It doesn't look like there's a big Vietnamese Chinese presence in Vancouver, but I'd love to show him a decent place that serves Vietnamese Chinese food, specifically mi hoanh thanh (Vietnamese style Wonton noodle soup). Admittedly I prefer Vietnamese style wonton noodle soup to Cantonese style...even if my ancestors may not approve. There's a ton of those restaurants in CA, but are there any in Vancouver?
Thank you all for reading this long post and helping me out!