Wild Rice offers farm to table Chinese cuisine served in a chic setting blending the traditional and modern.
No, really. When I taste something amazing that I can’t precisely identify, I am in awe and bliss. This food is exciting, with exotic and unexpected flavours.
Concerned about the rain on Friday, I needed a pre-theatre resto close to the Playhouse and open early enough to not be rushed. I was thrilled to learn that WR is open all afternoon; no reservations required. We showed up at 4:30. The place was empty, so we had our pick of tables.
Ironically, we ended up with too much time to kill. So we stretched out our meal as long as we could. In retrospect, I’m amazed how well we were treated in the circumstances. People were starting to line up and we were still occupying a primo table. Our server was exceptionally prompt, yet never implied that we should hurry. We were encouraged to take our time and enjoy ourselves.
We had the Dragon’s eye rock prawn sui mai; two prawn treatments and a crispy nest of deep fried leeks. Loved that. Then we shared the ghinko hummus. That impressed me the most. Where, oh where can I find the ingredients to make this at home? I want it every week! Finally, we shared the spicy Kung Po chicken. It was perfectly cooked with tender chicken pieces and silky, toothsome noodles. If I was a bigger eater, I'd have had one all to myself.
I’m so glad to find a pre-theatre alternative to Chambar, which was booked solid and not open until 5:30.
Just came back from lunch at Wild Rice. We were greeted promptly at the door and once seated the waiter came over quickly to offer drinks. Got some tea which was delicious. The watier was nice, but it seemed like there was no system to their service. We had two people who kept coming over and asking the same questions right after the other one just did. ie. how is everything? I don't need to be asked twice, thank you! Once is great.
We shared the spring rolls which were a good size and very flavourful, aswell as a peashoot salad, which was nice, but I thought would have more peashoots. The cucumber in the salad was slightly mushy too. Good flavours though. For our mains we each had a bowl. I had the chinatown sweep, which was good, but i liked my friends' bowls better. they had the kung pow chicken with rice, nice coconut milk and peanut flavours, and the braised vegetables with rice noodles. Again, i prefered the preparation and flavours of these dishes. I found my noodles a little too crispy and something about the sauce just didnt grab me.
All in all it was a good lunch, and I would go back, but to try some other stuff. The food of the poeple around us looked really good.
Sure, if you like a good, filling meal, you'd be disappointed with this place. This place is for people who like to chew and taste their food. This is the place to try new things--several new things at once! It's a bit pricey but if you think about all the work involved and the cost of ingredients in their dishes, it makes perfect sense. They update their menu often which of course is both great and disappointing. I miss their tofu bacon with butternut squash! But their current tofu dimsum, the smoked tofu & shiitake mushroom turnip cake is also good!
Cocktails? I've only tried the snapdragon. Horseradish vodka and butter ripple schnapps? Brilliant.
I always liked how they'd check our coats so when they didn't the last time I went, I was a little disappointed especially since I had brought a new person with me and had mentioned this little perk.
Never mind the other reviews, I'm going to keep coming back here.
I still remember the two meals I've had at Wild Rice, and need to go back there soon!
We had a great bok choi ceasar salad with a sesame oil twist that I'm still trying to make at home, a perfectly tender lamb shank that we ordered to share, but once my mother tasted it she claimed it was 'her' order alone so we had to order another (!), a yummy spicy chicken dish, a delicious mashed taro bowl to share, a wonderful lychee infused vodka martini, and everything else was good too, but these were my favourites.
The food is fancy and delicious, in reasonable portion sizes for the most part on the entree side. I like the family style sharing presentation. The seating is a little uncomfortable, but the price is great, the servers are pleasant and prompt, and the ambiance is nice. People bring their kids here and the kids behave well - and other people just come with cool coworkers. It's that good.
Co-workers have been talking about this place for years but never got around to trying it. Dunno why... anyhow, went the other week and it was pretty good. Recommend the Kung Pow Chicken for sure. It's a fusion mix but it tastes good and that's all the matters. Good service too and very attentive. Sure beats the usual Chinese food you get and it's good to mix it up a little. Nice decor and seating area.
Wild Rice had gone downhill for a while, but is back on top form! Welcome back :)
Nice cocktail menu, and a fair number of BC wines by the glass.
Excellent Kung Po, Eggplant Doufu, and spring rolls. Well prepared & well presented dishes, and everything that came out from the kitchen looked tasty. Great dishes for vegans & vegetarians, too.
The servers were professional and polite, but a little eager to take the dishes away.
The ambience is relaxing, contemporary, and hip, and the restaurant is very clean -- washrooms very tidy, seating areas spotless, beautiful lighting, and nice art on the walls.
This used to be one of my favorite restaurants in the city, but it kind of went down hill for a while -- small portions, middling servers, mediocre food. Now it looks like things have improved 100%, and I will be going back again very soon. Plus they're in the Entertainment Book, so you get awesome value.
Well done, Wild Rice!!
Not what I expected at all. The decor is polished and dark with mute dark green panel lighting. Wear black my dear! Very Sean Connery turtle neck. BTW The prices reflect the ambiance.
This place is essential a wine bar. In fact I would like it better if it had even more of a wine selection. All the wine was West Coast, nice to see Washington State and Oregon wine on the list!
The food was pretty darn good. Like with other outings, we ordered and shared. It was eclectic and all nicely presented, yet seemed more like elaborate tapas then meals. Our service was good (I guess that has changed for the better recently given the older reviews). And our wait staff seemed knowledgeable and attentive enough.
The menu is pretty limited (only about 10 choices). All apparently local, but where do you get local Jumbo Prawns? The drinks menu is by far away the star here. Although it isn't the hanging around type of place. A bit of an enigma this place. Interesting experience but not one that I expect brings many repeat customers. (Not comfy enough)
Very suave but for who and what? The pre and post theatre crowd perhaps? No theatres around here. A bit upscale for the movies across at Tinseltown. In fact I would rename it ENIGMA. I wouldn't however spend too much time trying to figure it out though.
Must be the lack of options in the neighbourhood/proximity to cinema that keeps it going (or hungry people from adjacent bars too drunk to taste their food)?
I've only been twice, but while the atmosphere is comfortable and reasonably stylish, every dish I've sampled has been very weak considering the prices they charge. Both times I was with groups sharing tapas style, so I've tasted near a dozen dishes, which I fault for various reasons ranging from overly salted to greasy to bland to overcooked.
Service while dining was fine both times, and I have to commend the waitress who literally chased my friends and I across the street and halfway through Tinseltown to return an umbrella that my friend left behind.
All in all, I hope to avoid going back.
Have been going to Wild Rice for a couple of years now and like it a lot! Staff is always friendly, food is good and Martinis are delicious (my girlfriend thinks so too!). It's a nice place to go after Tinseltown if you're in the area and we always try to drop in before a movie!
It's one of our favourite places to go in the city along with Relish and Hapa Izakaya!
My wife and I arrive around 8:00 pm, and the place was packed. There was a waiting line 45 minutes for a table but 15 minutes for the bar seat. The got us in the bar seat under 15 minutes, and we started with drinks and appetizers there. Highly recommend the Double Happiness Martini; a strawberry, raspberry light martini, I had four and could of gone for more. We ordered the Duck in a steamed bun and seared tuna sashimi. The food was average, not chinese but as informed by a frequent diner; it was Chinese "Fusion". Whatever, the food we ordered was appys only, but after long conversations, friendly bar staff, and a relaxed atmosphere, it was about an hour. They finally offered us a table, but we declined as we were enjoying ourselves at the bar. Awesome place for drinks and light appys after work or anytime. Really enjoyed ourselves, and glad I read the reviews before going.
I just read the other reviews about Wild Rice and gotta ask where were you dining? Because that does not sound like Wild Rice at all. Wild Rice is one of my favorite restaurants in town -- the chef creates amazing dishes and they have a really good crew there. My girlfriend and I love it there!
I cannot believe the criticisms that is being doled out here. I've gotta say there are a lot of inaccuracies in the reviews. 1st of all 'bottomless' -- I remember that tasting menu last summer --- and it was a TASTING MENU not a 3 course dinner. And it was only $15 dollars (not $25). That being said -- while i do not believe that it was Wild Rice's best offering - still for $15 it was a worthwhile deal.
And Morgan -- may I make a suggestion -- open up to new experiences. Wild Rice is not trying to be typical Chinese food -- its modern fusion. And if your comment about the chicken in sweet and sour sauce is reference to their Kung Po Chicken in the yellow bean sauce -- holy crap that dish is phenemonal! I'm addicted and have to get my fix at least twice a month.
Anyway -- i'm not saying that it's not possible that Wild Rice was not on their top game the nights that you went in. But I would suggest taking another chance.I go out to a lot of restaurants, and a rule that I have picked up is "give restaurants at least two chances, before you right them off, because everyone (or place) can have an off night"
See you around town!!