Located just across the street from Po Kong Vegetarian and just a few more steps from Do Chay, this would seem to be the most vegetarian-friendly block (Kingsway between Knight and Fraser) in Vancouver, so far.
Their menu declares, " Eat Right. For the love of our animal friends and for our beautiful planet." Very nice! We arrived Sunday morning for the dim sum menu although they offer a full menu of vegetarian delights. We started with the familiar Deep Fried Taro Dumplings. This was crispy and hot on arrival and had a savoury filling of what I assume included mushrooms and bamboo shoots among other things. I always believe that when vegetarian restaurants offer some deep-fried dishes they will be able to reach my heart.
The Pumpkin Congee was chock full of tasty Kombucha squash. Rich and comforting, this dish would not have profited from meat.
Definitely at the creative end of the scale, was Mango Green Tea Mini Pancake. Halfway between rice roll and dessert, this pancake being almost tortilla-like while the filling was cold and sweet. Definitely, something we would order again and just a bit off the beaten path.
Also in the rice roll area, were the Red Rice Rolls. other than the obvious (being red) this came close to the rice rolls we are used to. Again, they had a mixed filling but must have included some Chinese donut as they had some crunch.
The Xia Long Baos were a bit of a miss as far as purists might be concerned. They were tasty and I would try them again but the soup had completely leaked out by the time they reached us. I think the problem might have been with the dough as they were quite sticky and were difficult to get off the paper in the steamer. Still, they were texturally and even in the thickness of the dough, decent enough. Just no soup!
Another deep-fried dish was Deep-Fried Bean Curb Skin stuffed with Burdock. Served with vinegar on the side, these again fulfilled our fatty, crunchy cravings.
Finally was another near-miss with Siu Mai. Listed on the menu as corn and oatmeal, for some reason, I was expecting a different texture but they were definitely of an oatmeal texture. Not bad just not something I would order again.
All in all, it was nice to know that this Chinese custom is available for the vegetarian community. The back corridor has a few pictures of well-known vegetarians and their sentiments that should give us pause to reflect. The foodie community needs to come out more to promote this healthy, earth-friendly and humane style of eating. Meatless Monday just seems a little weak these days. I will be the first to admit that it is not easy but seems more and more the right choice to make.
For what it's worth, we give Sun Bo Kong Vegetarian 3 1/2 out of 5.
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