Saturday Dim-Sum with Stomach's family...and we haven't been here in a while. Previously, the dim sum here was very good and what was more important was the fact that they had different stuff. I remember their shredded chicken salad to be really good. Today we ordered har gow (shrimp dumplings), steamed spareribs (pai gwut), steamed rice rolls with chinese donut, bbq pork puff pastries, sesame balls, steamed beef balls, a dish of beef and veg with rice noodles, sticky rice in banana leaves, deep fried taro rolls wrapped in seaweed, deep fried spicy squid, glutinous rice balls stuffed with black sesame paste, pan fried buns, and spring rolls.
glutinous rice balls with black sesame paste
We were somewhat disappointed with the quality of the dim sum today. The chinese donut wasn't so crispy and fresh, the rice noodles dish was blah and the spicy squid was heavy-handed with garlic, which left a bitter aftertaste. The har gow skin fell apart. When that happens you know the dim sum isn't as good as it should be. Har gow skin should be translucent and thin, yet strong enough to hold together the filling without rupturing before you get it to your mouth. It shouldn't be too sticky so that you can pluck it out of the bamboo steamer with your chopsticks in one whole piece. It's a drag when your dumpling sticks to the other 3 in the steamer and you can't pry it away in one whole piece without dragging other pieces of other dumplings along with it. These har gow were not to the point of sticking to one another, but they didn't hold well enough to get to your mouth without falling apart.
deep fried taro rolls in seaweed
Our sister-in-law Talula commented that it wasn't as good as Red Star Restaurant, which we have been to quite often (and mostly for dinner) and I concur that the quality of Fisherman's Terrace has gone downhill even though there are people lined up out the door. This is probably because of its convenient location in Aberdeen Centre.
Stomach's brother, Little Stomach, came back from the washroom and reported to me on the condition of the men's loo. According to him, there were sanitary devices such as touchless faucets and hand dryers, but the bathroom itself was not as clean as it should be. The restaurant and the washrooms are relatively new and higher end. They obviously put some thought into decor. Why can't they just follow through and put some effort into the maintenance of these amenities? That sucks.
Okay, let me get up on my cakebox to rant a bit:
If there's something that really bothers me about Asian restaurants in general, it's the cleanliness of their bathrooms. It would be a good assumption that the cleanliness of a restaurant parallels the cleanliness of the kitchen. I make it a point not to go to the bathroom at 95% of the Asian restaurants I frequent. I bring my own baby wipes for our hands. It is a welcome relief when you see that the state of cleanliness of an establishment from its dining area to its washrooms is excellent. You can be more assured that the kitchen reflects the same attitude about hygiene. I love those sorts of establishments and continue my quest for a clean Asian restaurant with creative, quality food.
All is not lost though because I was able to go crazy at Daiso (the $2 store) and buy a whole whack of bento supplies. I was inspired by the uber-freaky cute bento site I have been visiting. Obviously this woman has a lot of time on her hands. My mouth hangs in awe at the sheer amount of time involved and (in Stomach's opinion) wasted/unappreciated effort--at the beautiful yet useless packaging of itty-bitty portions of food into the Japanese lacquered bento boxes that look too delicate to put in the fridge or microwave.
So what do I do?
Of course I go and buy a couple of those beautiful lacquer bento lunch boxes at Utsuwa (also located at Aberdeen). They weren't as expensive as I thought. They were $15 each and very pretty. The saleslady also told me they were dishwasher and microwave safe (hurray!) Too pretty for Stomach's packed lunch. But cute and pretty enough for Bebe and Bib when they get older. And pretty enough for me too--I'm thinking that the smaller portions should help me lose my baby weight. ha ha.
To take a look at my inspiration for all this bento craziness, check out the freaky-cute bento website I've been perusing http://www.cookingcute.com/
RESTAURANT: FISHERMAN'S TERRACE RESTAURANT (third floor of Aberdeen Mall)
ADDRESS: Unit 3580-4151 Hazelbridge Way, Richmond, B.C.
PHONE: (604) 303-9739
PARKING: mall parkade
TOTAL POINTS: 16/24