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3
  • Food3.5
  • Service3
  • Value2.5
  • Ambiance3
  • Reviews65

Sun Sui Wah Seafood Restaurant

3888 Main Street
Vancouver, BC V5V3P1
Tel: (604) 872-8822
Fax: (604) 876-1638
Neighbourhood: East Side

Reviews

Displaying 1 - 20 of 65 Reviews FoundSort: Useful | Helpful | Reviews | Date
Expected better...
By WeLoveFood of North Vancouver (53 Reviews)
Submitted Friday, July 24, 2015 - 11:58pm [Dine in]

We've been to the Richmond location where they really delivered on food quality and service, therefore when we had out of town visitors we chose Sun Sui Wah, Main St. Location for a casual meal after airport pick up. We were 5 and ordered roast duck, free range chicken, lettuce wrap, scallops and veggies, salty spicy deep fried tofu and sauteed snow pea shoots. The waiter tried to talk us into a soy chicken instead of the steamed ginger chicken we wanted but our visitors wanted the ginger dish so we stuck with ordering that only to be told 10 min later by the waiter that they were out of that and only had the soy chicken left. We said that was fine but he should have been honest in the first place, that was annoying. The best dish was the snow pea shoots, hard to go wrong with that. The duck was dry and probably the worst chinese style roast duck I've ever had in Vancouver and I would say we've had that in about 50 different chinese restaurants. The free range soy chicken was ok, just ok. The filling for the lettuce wrap (pork) was bland and anemic looking. The scallops and veggies were fine, and for the price a good amount of scallops. My son ordered a coke and it took them 15 minutes to bring it. The whole meal was completely underwhelming and if I hadn't experienced the Richmond location first I would not have any clue as to how Sun Sui Wah holds the reputation they do in Vancouver for being one of the best Chinese restaurants. By the way, I am Chinese so I know about the off the cuff service style in these restaurants but the service here was even less remarkable than say, Hon's, so that's not up to snuff. Maybe dim sum is really the only thing they do well or maybe we hit them on an off night, nevertheless we probably won't go back there any time soon.

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Used to be so much better
By nguyenp of Burnaby (2 Reviews)
Submitted Friday, January 15, 2016 - 4:54pm [Dine in]

As the biggest dimsum fan ever, I am a little sad to write about this place. Sun sui used to be the place to get quality dim sum at a fair price in a lovely location. Unfortunately, as my last two visits have gone to demonstrate, the place has slowly been taking a nose dive. What used to be the epitome of dimsum and the standard for it across the city has taken a turn for the worst. We came for a lunch reservation only to find the whole thing subar. The food, from the duck to the shrimp and daikon cakes left a lot to be desired, and the service was very slow. There are place in Vancouver with better prices and service.

This cantonese family style restaurant with banquet like meals has so much potential, and I know they can do better than this.

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Go Early for Dim Sum
By bordercollie of north vancouver (268 Reviews)
Submitted Sunday, June 21, 2009 - 10:16pm [Dine in]

I made reservations at 10am Sunday, with my friend, and notice after we have been seated, their was a long line up by 10.30am. Very popular & busy location and being fathers day, was alot of families starting their morning at this location.

I found the service to be quick, friendly and helpful, when anything needed to be explained. We ordered many dishes, from Steamed Prawns, bbq pork buns, warm mini custard tarts to sticky rice. Our dishes arrived within a few minutes and kept coming, and everything was good. I couldn't remember the name that had peanuts, it was excellent tasting and would order it again.

The price came to $43.00 for 8 dishes, the price is high for Dim Sum, and if I was celebrating something special, I would come back to enjoy the food.

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Good, but overrated
By Bonka of Vancouver (464 Reviews)
Submitted Wednesday, November 26, 2008 - 10:35am [Dine in]

Among many people who mention this restaurant it sounds as if this is the pinnacle of fine asian cuisine. The PR machine has really built up a nice backdrop for them to sit in but it's definitely not the creme de la creme amongst its peers.

Of the two I've come to this location the most, including wedding banquets, dim sum and dinner. They are reliable with their dishes and quality is on par but their prices are a princely sum. Between the two locations I'd still say this one climbs ahead.

I like the service, and even during dinner service we had the Manager follow up on us - a rarity at any restaurant I've dined in. They pick up the slack where the floor staff sometimes disregard.

I must be getting use to their decor as I am finding it a little dated and could benefit from a minor facelift.

All in all, their name carries a certain cachet but between expectation and reality I have found them to be too highly regarded.

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great (pricey) dim sum - cranky hostess
By marymac of Delta, BC (145 Reviews)
Submitted Thursday, August 14, 2008 - 5:00pm [Dine in]

The Other Half and I decided to drop into Sun Sui Wah for dim sum today. Being a weekday, and early (11:30) we thought it would be ideally not-crowded. The hostess at the front desk looked a little perturbed to see us, but we were hungry!

The place was half-full, and we were seated quickly. Got our request for bo-lay tea and one fork in, and settled to the enjoyable task of choosing from an extensive dim sum checklist. With the standard har gow and siu mai, we also ordered prawn and chive dumplings, tofu and eggplant and green pepper stuffed with fish paste (one piece of each in an order of three pieces), Chinese doughnut in rice roll, egg tofu topped with shrimp paste and almond jello for dessert on a very hot day.

Everything came along in good time, and our tea was kept refilled with hot water. Service I would say was outstanding, but we were early and the restaurant WAS only half-full.

Room is a standard open room, airy with a high ceiling, clean and tidy. The bathrooms were OK, although perhaps the cleaning supplies could be stored somewhere else than under the sinks in the ladies WC.

As the room got busier, the servers started to move faster and lto ook right through us. It took several tries to wave down someone for the bill.

The hostess-lady arrived with the bill folder, looking even more upset than ever. When I reached for the folder, she just about threw it on the table. Hmmm, that was a jarring note. Not sure what was getting her knickers in a knot, but when paying a good amount of money, I sorta expect some eye contact, or a pleasant expression.

The quality was very good, but it IS more expensive than some...

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Not worth the price tag.
By foodfanatic of South Vancouver (286 Reviews)
Submitted Friday, August 26, 2005 - 4:58pm [Dine in]

For dimsum, everything's fine. Standard. Nothing exceptional, and nothing that's bad to speak of. For dinner, some items get charged for way more than its worth in portion and in flavour. Though for the most part, the flavour isn't lacking in the dishes, but neither does anything really stand out. This is a good thing then at least you get a decent meal, consistent, as long as you are reassured of the quality and freshness of the ingredients. However, it's not worth the inflated rates that you're better off paying at a better Chinese seafood restaurant than this. Go to Kirin or Fisherman's Terrace or Shiang Garden for better and similar to less in cost for both dimsum brunches and seafood, yes, king crab included, dinners.

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Great service despite being busy
By azn_msfyt of Delta (194 Reviews)
Submitted Monday, May 18, 2009 - 11:24pm [Dine in]

Came here for a wedding fearing the worst but was pleasantly surprised.

Food: Not bad but some things were a little greasy (which is understandable since food was cooked en masse). My favorite was the e-fu noodles and lobster. My least favorite were the quail (greasy but yet dry) and fried rice with two sauces (neither sauce tasted like anything). Overall though, not bad.

Service: It was a busy night indeed but our server, Kent, was really friendly, funny and on the ball. They were great in clearing away dirty plates and serving all of the food. The only qualms I had were they were much too eager to clear away food that was still being eaten - we had to stop them several times from taking dishes away but it was minor.

Value: I can't really comment since I did not pay for the meal but it must have been solid for the bride and groom to choose this place.

Ambiance: Cleaner and warmer than most Chinese restaurants and would def. recommend to others. Bathrooms were also nicely kept up.

I would probably return here for dim sum sometime and wouldn't hesitate in recommending it to others.

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Subpar wedding Reception
By cherrybomb143 of Surrey, bc (218 Reviews)
Submitted Sunday, September 21, 2008 - 6:09pm [Dine in]

Attended my friend's wedding reception here last night and felt the need to comment for anyone thinking about holding their own in this restaurant.

Plainly put, the food was NOT good. The menu was standard wedding banquet fare. The fish was over cooked and rough, noodles were BURNT (they didn't just taste burnt, we found the evidence with black specks and chunks inside the dish!!), the squab that they're normally famous for was inconsistent -- my first piece was great, the second was dry and much too chewy. Sharks fin soup was ok, but not great. Abalone on veggies was really salty. Dessert three ways was negligable and over-sweet (if that's possible for dessert) There were better dishes, such as the cold appetizer platter to start, seafood and veggies, fried rice and lobster, but 4/ 10 dishes is a failure in my books especially for a restaurant with Sun Sui Wah's reputation...they certainly didn't deliver.

Service was good as to be expected, but didn't redeem the low food quality.

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Pre-Chinese New Years Dinner
By hydeeho of Burnaby (182 Reviews)
Submitted Tuesday, February 5, 2008 - 11:43pm [Dine in]

I was an invited guest to an early Chinese New Years Dinner. Party of 20 meaning to tables of 10 with a set dinner menu at $688.00 per table. Service was impeccable but of the 10 course dinner I was not impressed with about 4 of the dishes. Shark fin soup was tepid and very uninspiring with lots of bean sprout filler. Geoduck was tough as hell and the abalone tasted off. The steamed black cod was lovely but very small so everyone just got a taste. You got so little it was hard to count as a dish. The other dishes were excellent. Would I come again? Only if you paid.

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not worth the money
By chasiubow of North Van (675 Reviews)
Submitted Sunday, December 23, 2007 - 4:57pm [Dine in]

Our group of five hearty diners went to SSW for dim sum. We wanted to treat ourselves since it was close to Xmas. I haven’t been to this location in years, but I remembered it wasn’t bad last time. This time around was just okay. We had to wait for seats but that’s normal. We got a nice table eventually and settled in. The noise level was too high to talk, but we hadn’t come for conversation.

We had a variety of dim sum standards. Nothing really stood out, and nothing seemed to be hot by the time the cart got to our table. If I had the same dim-sum anywhere else, I would give it 2 stars, but Mrs. C insists on the extra star for sentimental reasons.

The ambience was nice despite being extremely loud, and the w/c was really awful even for a Chinese restaurant. The service was good and so no issues there. The meal cost a lot, and for the money it just wasn’t worth it. There are plenty of dim-sum places where you can get a better meal for half the money.

I recommend going somewhere else.

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not the best
By royalsam of burnaby (47 Reviews)
Submitted Monday, April 21, 2008 - 1:48pm [Dine in]

Being non Asian but having enjoyed dim sum since the early 70s, I thought I'd give it a try. It's hard to believe this place was so highly rated. The food was passable only and given the price made it a poor value. There are so many other restaurants with prices much lower that they must be continuing on name only. Certainly I will not return.

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Disappointing for a Top Rated Restaurant
By Gidge of Vancouver (93 Reviews)
Submitted Friday, February 8, 2008 - 10:44pm [Dine in]

Just came back from a disappointing Chinese New Year dinner at SSW and I'm not surprised to read the numerous luke-warm recent reviews from other diners. The level of service and food has definitely diminished over the years. Been here six times: 2 banquets, 2 dim sum and 2 family dinners. Tonight has to be the most disappointing, service wise.

Food: We were a group of 13 and were seated and greeted promptly. Food came out quickly, if not a little too quickly - but that's not the problem. Food was decent: some dishes (ie. soup) were tasteless and the crab claws were undercooked, but on a whole fresh ingredients were used. In consideration of the price and star rating of SWW, I really expected spectacular..well at least above average food for a place that claims to be "the Best Chinese Restaurant". Nice try on a very busy night, though.

Service: Once again, I hold SSW to a different standard than to a typical hole-in-the-wall Chinese joint. Our dishes were never once changed, servers were hard to get a hold of, and repeated requests had to be made. Case in point, it took five requests before we finally got an extra plate of lettuce for our beef lettuce wrap. And to add insult the injury, they charged us $5 for the "extra" plate of lettuce. If I cared to go back, I would've brought this up to management, but $5 is not worth creating a ruckus over, and especially not on Chinese New Years.

Ambiance: The decor and location are the only two good things going for this overrated restaurant. I liked the clean white lines of the ceiling and the lighting was good. A bit noisy but that could be because it was Chinese New Years. The chairs are decent, but I have to admit that the setting and utensils are not comparable to those at Kirin's.

Overall: Not going back; rather spend good coin at Kirin, Fisherman's or Red Star (on Granville). Perhaps you may have better luck.

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Good Dim Sum
By Lanie23 of Vancouver (53 Reviews)
Submitted Sunday, December 3, 2006 - 4:26pm [Dine in]

Really enjoyed having the old style carts. Food was good, but could have had more variety. Service was slow- there were long periods where there were no carts coming by, which was hard because we were very hungry!

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Roast Squab is SUPER
By latelier of SE Vancouver (69 Reviews)
Submitted Wednesday, April 13, 2005 - 7:46pm [Dine in]

I came here for Dim Sum and had the House specialty - the Roast Squab. Succulent, crispy skin, rich tasting meat. Absolutely wonderful. Not even a Michelin Starred chef could produce such an offering to their guests at quadruple the price. Finger Lickin Good.

Other Dim Sum, like Har-gow and Shui Mai are also well crafted, fresh and hot, and plump. Lovely.

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Tasty Dim Sum
By thecritic of Vancouver (376 Reviews)
Submitted Friday, November 5, 2004 - 10:02am [Dine in]

I've been here 3 or 4 times in the past 6 months for dim sum and have enjoyed it every time. The dim sum is high quality and not greasy at all as I've experienced at other restaurants. Its always kind of amusing when servers offer me chicken feet or some other non-western delectable; with a smirk on their face of course knowing full well I will decline.

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Fourteen Guests for “Critter’s” Birthday.
By louielobster of Glendale (53 Reviews)
Submitted Wednesday, March 28, 2007 - 2:52pm [Dine in]

Chicken winter melon soup. (2 soup terrines)
Beijing Duck Skin with pancake wrap. (2 ducks)
Beijing Duck meat with lettuce wrap. (2 dishes)
Prawns and scallops sauté with sugar snap peas. (Large)
Crispy skin chicken. (1 whole)
Sweet and Sour Pork with lychees. (Large)
Garlic sauté pea tips. (Large)
Beef and fresh tomato chow mein. (Large)
Yang Chow fried rice. (Large)
Baked tapioca pudding. (Med)

Fresh Fruit Birthday Cake. (Extra large)
9 bottles of wine and bubblies poured.

What a feast! The food here at the Sun Sui Wah is impeccable. I visit this restaurant more times then I can count on my fingers and toes every year. Every plate of food served has always been of the highest Cantonese style cuisine. Their Dim Sum is the best in the city. The service is more than adequate for this type of fare and flagging a waiter for special requests will bring immediate attention. And special thanks to manager Allen and assistant manager Lawrence for making every visit a special occasion.

My only two cautions are the decibel of the room; My advice is to be as assertive as the next table, be happy and it’s a Chinese Restaurant after all.
And the other caution is ‘Make a reservation!’ Every chair in this place has six legs!

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Memories ...
By darrenkadish of Burnaby, B.C. (46 Reviews)
Submitted Sunday, December 23, 2007 - 9:00pm [Dine in]

We picked this restaurant (instead of a Greek restaurant) to have our Christmas dinner at. I'm now regretting the choice ...

We made reservations for 8:00 pm for 8 people (8 for 8 - lucky Chinese numbers right?) ... well, we didn't feel lucky that night. The hostess said that we were scheduled for 6:00 pm (soooo not true), but they had a table ready for us anyway. We ordered the set menu that serves 10 people, but they must have adjusted the food quantity for the 8 of us because if the servings were for 10 people, then it must have been for 10 people that had already eaten dinner. I was not impressed by the quantity of the food and even more disappointed by the quality of the food (except for their squab, which they are renowned for). But the rest of the food was no better than any other Chinese restaurant, except for the price!! $600 (this includes the set menu, 8 beers and 3 pitchers of Coca Cola and tip). Imagine how much Greek food and drinks I could have had with that money. So disappointing. I won't be coming back here again.

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I thought wrong...
By me_and_food of Vancouver (32 Reviews)
Submitted Monday, January 22, 2007 - 12:22am [Dine in]

I haven't been to Sun Sui Wah for a few years now and finally i decided to go with my boyfriend. The parking lot was full so we had to drive around the area to find a parking spot. The place was packed and we didn't have to wait too long till we were seated. The place was big but there weren't that many dim sum carts (i was disappointed). I looked around and saw a lot of food on other people's table, so when the nearest cart was around we waved the waitress over to see what was in it. There seemed like a decent amount of food but all there was, was 3 kinds. We took 2 out of the 3 and the portion was small. Alot smaller than other places i've been to. We ended up only ordering 3 dim sums and drank tea till we were full and it came to more than $15! Definitly not worth it. I don't know why people love this place so much. I will probably not return anytime soon.

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Reservations Should be Honored
By dinnerguests of vancouver (27 Reviews)
Submitted Monday, August 4, 2014 - 1:40pm [Dine in]

We just had dim sum with the family at this very consistent restaurant.
The food is always consistent; new items are regularly on the menu. The servers are professional.

What we do not expect to pay for, and what is not on the menu is poor treatment by the hostess. This is also a consistent aspect. We checked-in for our reservation with the hostess who was rude from the start: no eye contact, hollering tone of voice, no smile, and no communication to say that our table is or is not ready. While we waited with uncertainty, we noticed several other groups with the same party numbers--no reservations or later reservations, were seated ahead of us because they knew the various managers in black suits. We could understand the interchange among these people.

Suggestions to the owner: send your hostesses for WorldHost training, be fair to all customer reservations--honour their time.

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Consistently Good Quality Food, Service, and Ambiance
By samw_bc of False Creek, Vancouver (19 Reviews)
Submitted Saturday, February 19, 2011 - 1:13am [Dine in]

Whenever we run out of new Asian restaurants to try, we always come back to Sun Sui Wah. I've never had a bad meal here. The food quality is top notch. Service is usually excellent. I would give the service a 4.5. Empty plates are cleared promptly. The decor is nice and the restaurant is clean. We go for the dim sum and for the dinner. The baked tapioca dessert is my favorite dessert there. Squab, cod, and lobster are my favorite dinner dishes.

This restaurant sets the bar which I use to compare other Asian restaurants against.

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