'The Oscars' of the Chinese restaurant world
The best of the best Chinese restaurants and dishes from around Greater Vancouver were celebrated at the 5th annual Chinese Restaurant Awards at the River Rock Show Theatre on Tuesday afternoon.
“It’s exciting,” said Craig Stowe, the founding director of the event.
“We see it as the Oscars of the Chinese restaurant [world],” he said.
The event started off with a reception where three executive chefs demonstrated their cooking skills and served their award winning dishes for approximately 250 guests to sample.
This was followed by the official awards ceremony where 20 critic’s choice awards, chosen by seven judges, and 18 diner’s choice awards, chosen by the general public, were handed out.
Richmond restaurants won more than half of the awards, with Sea Harbour Seafood Restaurant additionally being honoured for being the most awarded restaurant in the critic’s choice category over the past five years, having won eight awards in that time.
“Richmond is known for the best Chinese food in the world outside of China,” said Stowe.
“[It] is known for the variety and complexity of Chinese food,” he said.
The Chinese Restaurant Awards has gained international recognition since it began and has helped increase business for award winners.
Seven judges voted for the best dishes after a full year of tasting. Top Shanghai Cuisine’s Pan Fried Shanghainese Buns, a 2013 Diners’ Choice Awards winner, was voted as a must-eat by the judges. Kirin Restaurant at City Square wowed the judges with three dishes—Deep Fried Boneless Chicken with Minced Prawn, Glutinous Rice, and Chestnut Paste, Geoduck Two Ways, and Smoked Live Lobster with Assorted Mushroom—making them a top winner in the category. The new title, Greater Vancouver’s Critics’ Choice Awards - Most Awarded Chinese Restaurant, was given to Sea Harbour Seafood Restaurant. From 2009-2013, the restaurant won eight Critics’ Choice Awards with Signature Dishes such as Fried Squab (2009-2012) and Pan-fried Spot Prawns with Soy Sauce (2011-2012).