Rice Cakes & XLB @ Dinesty Chinese Restaurant 聚

Dorothy wanted some dim sum, and I thought she meant Hong Kong style dim sum initially. But wait, she's Shanghainese so I guess it was natural for her to allude "dim sum" to Shanghainese dim sum. Anyways, since the last time at Shanghai Wonderful didn't satisfy my xlb craving, we went to Dinesty.

I hadn't been to Dinesty for quite some time now, even though I really want to go there for dinner a lot of times. However, everytime we pass by it's quite packed and I don't want to bother with long waits. This time we made a reservation for lunch.

The first thing to come was actually not the xlb, but the stir fried rice cake with salted vegetable and pork (雪菜肉絲炒年糕, $7.95). This came in a huge plate and was quite good and filling. Good lunch item to share since it wasn't as hard to split as noodles are, and everyone can just scoop it easily whenever they want. There was a lot of preserved vegetables, and it was a good vegetable to rice cake ratio.

The xiao long bao (小籠包, $5.95 for 8 pieces) was next to come. They were a bit smaller than other restaurants and I think this was the reason why there was less soup inside. I was not as pleased because that's my favourite part about xiao long bao! Other than that, it was okay I guess. One thing I really liked about Dinesty was that they gave a saucer of vinegar for each guest, rather than one to share between everyone. Hurrah for worry-free double dipping!

Dorothy requested we order the tofu with century egg (皮蛋豆腐, $4.95). It was pretty good -- the tofu was really smooth and soft, but what really tied everything together was the sauce and the shredded pork. The sauce (similar to a thick version of sweet soy sauce) wasn't too strong that it covered the century egg and pork provided a nice texture against the tofu. This is pretty much a very simple dish anyone can easily fix at home, so I'm glad I tried it there for inspiration.

The green onion pancake (蔥油餅, $2.75) was not bad.  It wasn't super oily, but I wished it had more green onion flavour to it.

Last thing to come was the hot and sour soup (酸辣湯, $3.75 for small). What was interesting was the servers kept reminding us by asking "the hot and sour soup still hasn't arrived yet?" After a long while, it finally came. It was a pretty standard (unlike the one from Wild Rice) and I liked the amount of vegetables inside -- not too much, yet enough to get my money's worth. I really hate it when there's so much vegetables and tofu that it seems like I'm eating vegetables with soup rather than soup itself.

Overall, everything was not bad and I really liked the rice cakes.  It ended up being quite a cheap meal (around $7-8) per person, which is pretty much a steal (compared to the last Shanghainese dim sum experience at Shanghai Wonderful, which was around $12 per person).  The food is good, and the cheap prices are super attractive.  Plus, the place itself is pretty clean and well-renovated!

Dinesty Chinese Restaurant 聚 
8111 Ackroyd Rd
 Richmond, BC
(604) 303-7772
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Whoa! It was only 7-8 bucks per person? Were the items above split between three people instead of two?

@Kirby: Yeah, 3 people but it was plenty and we were really full, especially with the rice cakes! That stuff is filling.

I love Dinesty so much. It's one of the very few restaurants I recommend to everyone that comes from outside of town that's looking for something different from the Downtown Vancouer scene.

I've always find that this place has something for everyone that I've brought no matter what.

The weirdest thing I notice is how the servers are always women.

@Vincent: I find myself recommending Dinesty to people who are looking for food in Richmond as well!

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