Calling all noodle fans! Venezia Place (8580 Alexandra Road), a two-level strip mall in the heart of Richmond’s Golden Village, boasts fabulous eats, most especially oodles of noodles. As part of “Food Street” aka Alexandra Road, this outdoor plaza definitely lives up to the gastronomical name.

Photo credit: Tara Lee
Photo credit: Tara Lee

You’ll find Big Chef Restaurant, which specializes in Cantonese cuisine, such as the award winning pan-fried Dungeness crab with salted egg yolk (Chinese Restaurant Awards 2012); as well as Peaches Café, a Hong Kong café that serves up casual dishes, like Hainan free range chicken with rice and American-style mixed grill.

Other places to visit include Scorpio’s M Dessert, which offers a variety of refreshing shaved ice treats (eg black sticky rice with homemade shaved ice), and Taiwan Taipei Original Pot, a three-course hot pot restaurant, with popular dishes such as boneless Hua Diao (rice wine) chicken and a rich Macanese bone marrow pot.

Here are five more lip-smacking reasons to put Venezia Place on your dining radar:

Kung Fu Noodle

Kung Fu Noodle is part of a three-location chain (the other two are in Vancouver) known for its reasonably priced, slurp-worthy noodles. Décor is basic and service efficient, making it ideal for a quick, hearty meal. The menu features noodle soups, like one with Lanzhou stretched noodles; chow mein, such as cumin lamb chow mein; and “mixed noodles,” such as Kung Fu noodles with meat sauce (with a choice between stretched noodles, cut noodles, vermicelli, and rice noodles). You’ll be in noodle heaven!

Cut noodles with meat sauce; Photo credit: Tara Lee
Cut noodles with meat sauce; Photo credit: Tara Lee

You can also order fried rice, hot pots, and a range of other dishes, like marinated beef tendon and deep fried chicken.

Haroo Korean Homestyle Cuisine

This cozy spot, run by a lovely husband and wife team, has earned a loyal following for its rustic Korean food. Service and interiors are welcoming and provide a truly “homestyle” experience. Complimentary starters known as banchan, like kimchi and glazed potatoes (gamja jorim), whet diners appetites before generously portioned mains arrive. Go for the sizzling bibimbap, the beef bulgogi, the pajeon (pancake), japchae (stir fried sweet potato noodles with beef and veggies), or one of the nabe (hot pots), like the gamjatang (pork back bones).

Bibimbap; Photo credit: Lindsay Anderson
Bibimbap; Photo credit: Lindsay Anderson

Old Xian’s Food

One of the most exciting aspects of the Richmond food scene is the breadth of Chinese cuisine. This spot, brightly painted in a sunny yellow hue, cooks up the comfort food of northwest China. One of the main attractions is the roujiamo (hamburger) with fillings like stewed pork or garlicky sliced lamb.

Pork burger; Photo credit: Carolyn B. Heller
Pork burger; Photo credit: Carolyn B. Heller

There is also a wealth of noodle choices, like braised beef noodle soup, cumin beef fried noodles, and pork and chive dumplings in hot and sour soup.

Mount Qi pork noodles; Photo credit: Carolyn B. Heller
Mount Qi pork noodles; Photo credit: Carolyn B. Heller

Prepare to hunker over your steaming bowl and devour its contents!

Deer Garden Signatures

With five locations nation-wide (two in Richmond), this critically lauded chain (Best Hong Kong-style café in the Chinese Restaurant Awards) has its winning formula and dishes perfected. Interiors are modern and chic, and prices won’t put much of a dent in your wallet. The menu features a range of different meal combos, including steamed rice options, such as minced pork cake on rice; various sandwiches, like an unagi sandwich with fries; and mini set meals, such as a curry pork cutlet on rice.

Their signature noodle soup menu is always a good bet. Check off a soup base (e.g. peanut sauce and chili soup), two toppings (e.g. sliced beef brisket), noodle type (e.g. Korean style sweet potato noodles), and drink (e.g. yeung yang coffee & tea) on your paper slip and then wait for your bowl, chock full of delicious ingredients, to arrive.

Photo credit: Lindsay Anderson
Photo credit: Lindsay Anderson

Beijiang Restaurant

Look forward to indulging in the Halal Uyghur cooking of northwest China (Xinjiang) when you visit the Richmond location of Beijiang Restaurant. The food here evidences a characteristic Uyghur use of spices (e.g. cumin) and lamb/mutton in dishes. Charcoal barbecued lamb shoulder skewers pack a spicy punch, as does stir-fried cumin mutton.

Lamb shoulder skewers; Photo credit: Tara Lee
Lamb shoulder skewers; Photo credit: Tara Lee

Stir-fried lamb slices with steamed buns, Xinjiang pizza, and stir-fried lamb with handmade noodles offer further opportunities for trying classic Uyghur cuisine. The menu also has a selection of seafood dishes, like roasted cumin tilapia; as well as hot pots, such as braised beef tendon; and vegetable offerings, like braised sweet and sour eggplant.

Once you’re done gorging delicacies at Venezia Place, head home and plan what you’re going to eat the next time you visit!