"Modern and Traditional" Chinese food
This restaurant is now under new management, please disregard my earlier review.
This restaurant is highly not recommended for dim sum.
Firstly unlike the poster before me while they have had a huge banner outside their restaurant advertising $3 dim sum when we went in to the restaurant BEFORE 3pm for lunch, the dim sums were higher priced. Only one item out of the dimsum list was priced at $3 the rest were $4 or $4.50. Very deceptive pricing, when I questioned the waitress she just shrugged.
Despite this we were there and decided to give it a try. Uninspired lacklustre food.
There is such a low turn-over because of a lack of customers that one of the dimsums had actually gone bad and was mouldy. I lost my appetite, at least they took the item off of our bill however I could never eat here again.
Avoid this place if you value your health. Pick a busy place that has customers to enjoy dimsum so at least it will be fresher and with other people eating there you will know the quality is decent.
This restaurant is in the old Sam Wa location. I'm not sure what they've done to "upgrade", as I stopped going to Sam Wa years ago.
The Other Half and I went for lunch last Sunday, their "grand opening". Lots of flowers and plants at the front door with red ribbons and good wishes. I asked if the owners were the same people (as in - did they just change the name?) and was told no, new people.
A quick glance at the menu, and it looks pretty much like North American Chinese restaurant offerings., (no squid, no congee.... what kind of Chinese restaurant does not offer these items nowadays?)
Because we usually order more than for just the two of us, we ordered: spicy chicken wings, hot and sour soup, pork and bean sprout chow mein, gai lan with garlic sauce and <> from the chef's specials menu. pork chops with orange sauce. Turns out that on the chef's menu, the Chinese chararacters are on top... not so on the main menu....even if I told the server "pork chops with orange sauce", and he repeated it, we got egg tofu with dried scallop sauce on bok choy, the item one line down. When I asked, I was told "too bad". The chow mein was very salty, the "spicy" chicken wings were NOT spicy, the hot and sour soup was very bland, the gai lan was actually good. Quite a mixed bag.
Service: not so many people, and three servers rushing around getting in each other's way. One of the servers, while delivering a dish, looked at what was already on the table, and laughed! Greedy ''gwai lo""..... (we often over-order, just for the leftovers, and why would that matterÉ)
Ambiance.... maybe a new coat of purple and mauve paint and some frosted glass on the windows. Washrooms were EXACTLY the same, right down to the pieces of cotton mop caught on the bottom of the stalls.
Value... seemed a bit expensive, although the portions were OK.
In my opinion, you can get better (and more authentic) food at Yummy Wonton, just across the parking lot, for about the same price.
Ambiance: This place is from the 80s. Pink and purple, with old tables and no decoration to speak of. That said, the restaurant is very clean and the tables are well-maintained (no 30 degree wobble like in some places) and - unlike so many Chinese restaurants - spread out reasonably.
Service: By Chinese standards, outstanding. Attentive, unintrusive, polite, and seemed genuinely happy to be of service. Quite prompt as well.
Food: We had the dim sum - $3, all week, 11am-3pm. 21 choices on the menu, with all the usual suspects. 7 dishes came to $21 and change (22.50 or so after tax). Dumplings came with real sweet vinegar, spring rolls and har gao (shrimp dumplings) were loaded with fresh, crunchy shrimp. Tripe was flavourful and perfectly cooked. Markedly non-greasy as dim-sum goes. Flavours were fairly bright. Shanghai dumplings were the only major miss - one-dimensional pork flavour.
Value: $3 a dish for a standard portion of standard dim-sum food = delicious. Also: As other reviewers have pointed out, the menu given says prices above $4 for all the dim sum - this is for dishes served OUTSIDE 11-3; they'll be $3 on the bill.
Seated fast, no wait time. Waitress was happy to serve you, topped up water/tea frequently, Mandarin speaking staff. No complaints for this part of the Fraser. Food was as expected from a dim sum place. Not a fancy place, but acceptable to meet family and friends for lunch. Clean washroom. Happy to have found the place, was recommended by friends. I will definately be back for more. It saves me the drive into Richmond/Vancouver. Plenty of parking, easily accessible to Nordel & 88th.
Thankfully the Sam Wa finally closed. I happened to drive by and noticed the Grand Opening sign on the outside and turned around and gave it a try.
At a new Chinese restaurant that I have never tried before the first dish I always try is the "House Special Chow Mein" as a measuring stick. I was impressed. Very large portion, seafood was very fresh. Big scallops, prawns, cuttlefish and cod. Not overwhelming with too many vegetables. Just the right mix.
Very friendly owner and staff. He said that he has a chef from one of the Richmond restaurants which is where the owner came from.
Based on the first visit I was very impressed. The price was high at $12.95 but the size would have stuffed two adults on its own and I took lots home.
They have a lunch menu with smaller portions listed at $7.95 per dish. Combination of lots of the typical western examples along with a few specialized dishes.
Looking forward to going back to try something else and will be optimistic my first visit wasn't just a one hit wonder.
We desperately need some good chinese restaurants in the Surrey area. I'm sick of driving into New West to Hon's.
I went to the restaurant on the day of the grand opening when I noticed many people lining up at the door and the flowers at the entrance.
Although service was a bit slow, the food was excellent and delicious. None of the dishes I had ordered were disappointing. It was a bit expensive but worth it. The environment was comfortable and was well lit. The washrooms were a bit dim, though. Overall, it was a good dining experience.
One of the things I really like about this restaurant is that the food is never greasy or too salty. All the friends we've brought with us have enjoyed the food a great deal.
This restaurant has their own dim sum chef and it is some of the best I have ever tasted. The servings are generous and it's served every day for $3 a dish if you order before 3:00 pm.
The dinner menu is also good & the staff are helpful & friendly. The decor isn't great, but the food and staff more than make up for it. I recommend this restaurant to anyone who wants good Chinese food.