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Located in the old 7-11, had dinner on a weekday. Not as busy as I expected thus service was satisfactory. Decor and utensils were a bit off as there were plastic dishes, disposable chop sticks. A bit on the cheap look with bare min decor. Food was pretty good with mostly Northern Chinese Fare. Soup dumplings were very good with thin skins but a bit on the dry side. Fried dumplings were very good. Hot and Sour soup had lots of ingredients in it but had a bitter taste. Tan Tan noodles was the worst dish, noodles too soft and soup had too much seasme/peanut paste. Very good value for what you get and would return to try other items.
I've been to this restaurant a couple times now and i have to say i like this place. first of all, i am critiquing this place from the point of view and merits of chinese cuisine and habits.
I've ordered, overall, about 20 different items on their menu to date and i've been satisfied with 15 of them. to make a long review short, i'll pick out the relatives points of my judgments.
this restaurant is clean, not just for a chinese restaurant, but restaurants in general.
this restaurant prices their food very fairly in proportion to the amount that is given in each dish. chinese ingredients, especially the exotic stuff, can become quite expensive - ex think of saffron in middle eastern and some european dishes.
the service is not passionate but not unwelcoming. being serviced by young adult girls, i sorta get the feeling of inexperience yet attentiveness is there nonetheless.
the place in itself is well designed and simply laid out, with lots of space. the only downside is the washroom go in single order - meaning only 1 at a time.
now onto the food.
chinese cuisine is huge so when you first judge it there are basically 3 things that you look for - freshness, balance and color. chinese are not too big on form or 'haute' like the french :)
i can definitely taste the freshness and as for flavor, not overtly salty, but i do find some dishes to be a little bit on the sweet side. color is perfect therefore i know the dishes are cooked correctly.
my favorite dishes are the tofu in crab sauce and pork stew and tofu in brown sauce :)...of and also the little 'xiao long bao' - always a must if you want to taste one of the brand dishes of china.
Mrs. C and I were in Ditchmond and my beloved demanded a trip to Dinesty. I had seen mixed reviews on this site so I was not anxious to try, but the boss can’t be denied. We headed in after we (finally) found a place to park. The server was quick and seated us right away. I had need of the w/c, and I had to wait almost 5 minutes, because it accommodated only one customer at a time. Too small! When I got inside it was nasty. Once I got past that inconvenience the evening improved dramatically.
We had the beef and tendons in noodle soup with the complimentary potstickers. We also tried the cold cucumber with garlic and chilies, and the pork in hoi sin sauce with pancakes. The soup was 10 times better than at a certain beef noodle place in Burnaby, and the potstickers were fantastic, and double the normal size. The pork dish was also very tasty, but there weren’t enough of the little pancakes to accommodate all the pork. Mrs. C was very nostalgic about the cucumber since her mother used to make it for her, and we agreed it was good too. In fact everything we had was terrific.
The service was good and the ambience was modern even if it was a little dirty. If you want to see how your meal is made, the open kitchen occupies one side of the restaurant so you can observe the cooks at work and see flames leaping out of woks.
A (mostly) good experience. We left happy and had some leftovers for lunch. Try it and taste for yourself!
Food: noodle soup w/ beef tendon was a bit pricey ($7.95) but it's a fairly large bowl and there was lots of tendon! def worth the price. plus the soup was fairly light, no msg. it came w/ a free order of potstickers, not sure if that's just a dinner thing. steamed dumplings were yummy! they were perfect juicy bite size and the skin was so thin! the beef pancake wrap was ok, i have had better. my b/f loves the longan & glutenous rice sweet soup. it's got longan, lotus seed, blk jasmine rice, and i cant remember what else, but it's not too sweet which is perfect.
Service: u beckon, they come. nothing special. your order is printed out and taped to your table and each item is checked off. this way you know what u ordered and what is left to come. our desserts came a little slow, but our other dishes came fairly quickly.
Ambiance: clean and simple. furniture looks a little cheap, however, i do like the big windows and open kitchen decor. i have heard this place can get pretty busy during peak times, but we went on a wed nite and there was no wait.
Overall: i would def return to try out other items on their menu.
Dropped by for a wkend brunch. The xiao long bao had a nicely thin wrap, however, it didn't have much soup inside also the pork was quite rough in its overcooked groundedness & not marinated nearly well enough. The spicy beef noodle soup had a light gameyness to it, but other than that, it's pretty bland & boring though filled w/ hot chilli oil. The noodles they use are not bad. Not pasty tasting nor overcooked. Their Shanghai style dimsum items were mostly found to be quite lacking while the desserts are tasty. The egg yolk milk bun w/ salted eggs is pretty good. The salted duck eggs used in the mix helped to offset the sweet richness of the stuffing while the texture & taste of the bun itself was pretty good. The sweet rice balls wrapped in that dried red fruit thing was interestingly made. It looked like popped open lychee meat.
They end the meal w/ a shooter sized palate cleanser of sorts. It tastes exactly of those artificially flavoured peachy waters you can buy from Asian supermarkets... flavoured filtered sugar water basically--usually sold in transparent plastic cans/bottles.
They accept cash only. Of course, reservations are always recommended. They took ours, I'm not sure why it was entered on this site as not being accepted. We booked for 12:30pm when I'm sure they open earlier than that & when we got there, there were some ppl waiting for a table though they used one of the larger round tables as a communal table. The chairs make the place seem like a cafetaria. Cheap plastic chairs but at least they were cushioned w/ the equally inexpensive replaceable tacked-on foam cusions.
Service is adequate. Open kitchen so you can watch them making the buns, etc.
It's okay to return to though not worth any kind of a line up. Definitely returning for the buns/sweets.
Food: bland and oily. Spicy chicken turned out to be just deep fried chicken. Sweet and sour soup was just peppery. Ribs were fatty with little meat. Fish dish was plain tasteless. I would never eat this food again.
Service: Servers were terrible. In the middle of ordering, she looked away and didn't pay attention to me. I had to get her attention several times in the middle of ordering. They didn't remove dirty/empty plates and didn't refill our empty tea carafes until we specifically told them to. Long waits for food and for no reason.
Value: small portions, with relatively high price. Taste did not substantiate the prices.
Ambiance: great looking restaurant and I just loved the display of teapots in the entrance, as well as the comfy waiting seats. Open kitchen concept very nice, even though we were seated in the corner and couldn't see it. Love the reflective ceilings and comfy chairs.
Will not return since the food was plain terrible and recommend others to avoid. Ambiance was great but not enough to overcome terrible food, service and value.
I understand this is supposed to be sort of Shanghai-style food, which is popping up more and more here. We went there this week on recommendation of mother-in-law (who ought to know a thing or two about this type of food).
It's a clean, modern restaurant with a big, visible kitchen (always good). It's staffed with young-ish looking girls seemingly typical of many Richmond restaurants. But, perhaps untypically, we did get pretty decent and attentive service (and no, sorry, I'm not that hot, except maybe in my dreams ;-).
The steamed dumplings (xiao long bao) were quite good, one of the more resilient yet thin skins. Not the most juicy (too much can be dangerous), but it was tasty. Thumbs up. We had several types, including a vegetarian one made with some mystery squash. The drunken chicken was a slight surprise, it was completely de-boned and rolled up into sushi-roll sized pieces. Taste was very good, texture was perhaps slightly on the coarse side. Those were probably the highs that I remember. The next couple of dishes was also quite nice. One was a green vegetable, and another a mix of fish, bamboo, mushrooms, etc. The only drawback ... these 2 dishes were loaded with oil (or so it seemed. Funny I didn't feel it afterwards. Maybe it just looks like oil).
We finished off with some sweets, a steamed dumpling filled with red bean I think. Notable for its dual layer skin with, we think, sticky rice and regular wheat flower. I also liked the next one, which was a sweet "soup" with red dates stuffed with sticky rice dumplings.
I think perhaps "Outstanding" is a bit high for food rating, but then "Solid" might be a bit low.
Bottom line is that it serves up relatively unique cuisine of quite good quality. Decent service, clean restaurant. Definitely worth a repeat visit.
I really enjoy the food here, but it's the service that puts it over the top for me. I've gotten used to the borderline rude and usually brusque service so frequently found in Richmond restaurants, but the ladies at this place were nice. They even smiled! We were seated promptly, tea brought, and orders came in a timely manner. I found the combination of Shanghai and Taiwanese food interesting, and it actually goes together well.
We've tried many of the menu items for lunch, and a few are standouts. The wine chicken is great, boneless and chilled. The deep fried tofu (pudding I think they called it) in garlic sauce was awesome. Crispy on the outside, soft on the inside and tasty. The steamed pork buns everyone talks about are good. The skin is just right so they don't burst before you eat them, but they are on the smaller side and the broth could be tastier. We've tried a few of the soup noodles, and they are just ok, not my favorites, but certainly will fill you up.
You might be able to get certain dishes better elsewhere, but the service here will be the reason I return.
I guess it depends on what you order, hits and misses. But I ordered the right dishes due to my friends' recommendation, they have been here before. I like the beef noodle soup. I also love dumplings and pork dish.
The place is clean and it's comfortable enough. The price is very fair for the food you got and the environment.
Service was Ok. They were busy but their attitude was good.
I've been to Dinesty over ten times now. Everytime I leave satisfied. The food is decent, and service is decent. Somtimes the service is hit of miss when its busy, but for the most part, its better than some other places with similar food.
Overall though its nothing too impressive. The decor is nice, but not grand. The food is good, but there is better, and the value and service are ok, but once again, there is better.
The reason why I enjoy Dinesty is its very clean, you are always greeted with the typical taiwanese girl greetings and good byes you see at other taiwanese places. I'll repeat...and again...and again...
Based on a minimum of 6 visits the premises, furniture and equipment are in a desire state of repair. For someone who is not literate in the Chinese language I got the feel of being treated like a 2nd class citizen. Though, this is the only known establishment with the push carts for dim sum, the selection is limited. The last straw was when the bill presented was higher than what was expected from the advertised prices for dim sum.
Went to Dinesty for a late lunch, arrived around 2pm. The restaurant was busy with mostly 4 top and 2 top tables.
The food overall was more mild in flavour when compared to some other Shanghainese places we have frequented. We ordered XLB, Perserved Jelly Pork, Stewed Pork in Brown Sauce with buns, Wine Chicken and Stir Fried Rice Cake with Salted Vegetable and Pork.
The cold jelly pork appetizer came out first. The version here has more of a "minced meat type" texture to it, and less jelly. This was one of the dishes that I didn't mind the milder taste with. I find when I order this dish in other restaurants it tends to be quite salty. However, I wouldn't order this again here as I would rather have the "head-cheese-like" texture of this dish found at other shanghainese places.
The Wine Chicken didn't have much of a wine essence to it. What I enjoyed about their wine chicken is they do it boneless! This makes it so much easier to eat.
The XLB had a nice thin wrapper and I enjoyed the smaller size of them. The broth and the meat inside were just "meh..." A bit flavour less or much too mild.
The Stir Fried Rice Cake with Vegetables we had ordered just to have some carbs, otherwise it would've been a very meaty meal. This was a nice dish. This was another dish where I appreciated the lack of flavours. The rice slices were chewy but not gummy and the blandness of the flavour made it a nice filler dish.
The Stewed Pork with steamed buns was the last dish. The waitress had let us know at the time of order this dish would take at least 20minutes to prepare. The pork was tender and the buns were soft and yummy. The brown sauce was a bit sweet and I couldn't detect any other flavours in it other than: "sweet". The slices of pork were a tad on the thin side.
In conclusion, 3 out of the 5 dishes needed a touch more flavour. It wasn't a bad meal, just be prepared for the mildness/blandness.
Service at Dinesty today was surprisingly very good. We were greeted at the door and seated with tea very quickly. Our waitress was friendly and the food started coming out within 5 minutes of ordering. Very efficient. The restaurant is English Language friendly and has pictures of some of their dishes in the menu.
The restaurant is well appointed with modern furniture and every seat has a clear view of their open kitchen. As with most asian restaurants, the volume is loud. The bathrooms were usable but needed ventilation and to be attended to.
The value is pretty good, our 5 dishes came to just under $35. We weren't blown away by the food but we would consider a repeat visit if we wanted a quick bite and easy parking.
Food: I really enjoyed the food. The xiu long bao is great and you get stamps on a stamp card for each order! The different preparations of tofu and bean curd were also very enjoyable.
Service: Service was "solid". They weren't rude/abrupt like you would find at most asian restaurants. The only problem we encountered was that our food took SO long to arrive. We would get each dish one at a time with about 15 - 20 minutes gap in between.
Value Rating: Good Value for your money. For example we got a plate of fried rice for $7.95, main dishes were about $8 - 9, and appies started at around $3.50.
Ambiance: Very modern and cozy. The whole kitchen is visible to you as it is only covered by glass windows.
I'll be back! :)
This restaurant just opened not too long ago. The architecture is quite thoughtful in its blend of moderness with a Chinese tea house style- nice wall of chinese tea pot display, mirrors on ceiling, see-through kitchen. The food on the other hand needs a lesson (or perhaps we ordered the "wrong" items)? We had a rice, a steamed bun, and an appetizer. While the steamed bun was quite tasty, the stewed bean curd and 'stir [fried] rice with vegetable & salted pork" were way too greasy. The fried rice was just glistening and layered with oil, and the tofu, which didn't require frying (as it was stewed or boiled) was still covered in an additional layer of sesame oil. I've had much better fried rice elsewhere, and for casual Shanghai food, I'd rather go to Aberdeen.
Dined here for the first time back in December. Meal and service were better than expected. Some reviewers have mentioned bad service here. Our server was very polite and helpful. We were not sure how much food to order but our server helped us. Not outstanding service, but definitely better than most other Asian restaurants.
Food was great! Favourite dish was the marinated beef with soy sauce in pancake. Also had the shredded pork with pancakes. Loved the dish but not enough pancakes. If you like garlic, the tofu pudding in garlic sauce was really tasty. Also had the xlb and a noodle dish. Can't wait to go back to Dinesty again!
First impressions were bad, I walked in and the host asked me who I was and whether I had reservations and yelled in Mandarin at me... :( she brought us our tea angrily and sorta slammed them on the table. Service was not that great, they didn't have enough people so i can understand. Place was pretty packed, and much bigger than i thought it was, Food was pretty good and what you'd expect from a shanghai place at this price, there are better in richmond though. Decor was decent but the place was too noisy.
I am a customer who enjoys crowded restaurants. I do not mind waiting. I highly recommend making a reservation to avoid disappointment. Cmon ppl! The staff have to work day and night. The food is always consistently fresh and scrumptious. Anything deepfried, especially the beancurd, will always be crispy worth dying for. Every peice of noodle is worth dying for. Xiao long bao( steamed dragon bun) and ( panfried pork dumpling) sheng jian bao is just as good as my dinning experience in China. The only setback is the server's attitude that I endured only once when the restaurant was packed.
I've been looking for decent Chinese food since moving here from the Cambie Corridor and I have finally found one. My sisers and I wanted to try it out since we are so close and there are nothing but greasy Western Chinese food in the neighbourhood.
The Hot and Sour soup is excellent with the right amount of hot and sour. The string beans were well done with garlic and beef. We stuck to the main Fried Rice and Chow Mein first as a standard. It passed with the fussy kids and the adults. We had vegetables with seafood and they did not skimp on the seafood (shrimp, scallop, etc.) We had the broad rice noodles with beef and the crispy top fried noodle with chicken and vegetables.
I ordered the wonton noodle soup and it was a nice touch with the deep fried crispy garlic on top.
They offered us complimentary taro soup for dessert and it was very good. I order the red bean on ice but was disappointed that the ice were small cubes instead of crushed.
They have hot pots which I will try next time and a fresh crab selection. They also have specialty soup which is written in Chinese on the wall and judging by the higher price, these are authentic soup which I will have to bring my mom to translate. I'm sure they will translate for us as well.
The service is very attentive and friendly and they filled our tea very often. I know my fussy older sister, who has eaten in all the good Chinese restaurants in Vancouver will approve. The prices are reasonable and the serving size is great. The restaurant is very clean and that is a big plus for me.
Overall, this is a gem amongst the other crappy Chinese restaurants withing the vicinity.
I can honestly say I don't understand what some people are griping about, the food is excellent, the service is fine considering how packed and busy the place is, sometimes there's a bit of a wait for a seat but that's typical in a restaurant so many people keep coming back to. Whenever I'm in Richmond it is my first choice, love the selection and the food. I have eaten at restaurants all over the world including Hong Kong and this place is better than many of them.
Dinesty has the second best Xiao Long Bao on the West Coast (The best place is in San Fran) I just came back from Taiwan and Dinesty's XLBs are even better than the ones I had there! I have introduced the restaurant to a lot of friends and family and everyone have loved the food regardless of their ethnicity.
Their service is poor and ambiance isn't that great, but the food is worth going for.
Here for pictures and recommendation on what to order: http://bumblelog.blogspot.com/2010/01/dinesty.html