Lin Chinese Cuisine on West Broadway appear to be known for great Xiao Long Bao. Lin is decorated with rich, dark, luscious accents, black, mahagony and green. It reminds of old school Chinese flicks when kung fu masters wore dresses and their eyebrow hairs were almost as long as their beard. Decor aside, the question is does Lin’s Xiao Long Bao meet up to the hype?
We’ve been to Lin’s before when it first opened, but we didn’t get a chance to try their Xiao Long Bao. The best dumplings we’ve had so far are from Shanghai River in Richmond and Long’s Noodle House on Main. We’re back at Lin’s once again to see how they stack up.
(Above: Tan Tan Noodles.)
We ordered a bunch of dishes: fried green beans Szechuan style (spicy), deluxe Tan Tan noodle in soup (spicy), Shanghai style juicy dumplings and for dessert, pumpkin cakes. The Szechuan style green beans had a slight crunch, but was more soft and wilted than liked. The minced pork had a nice mixture of fried garlic bits, chilies and what tasted like radishes. The flavor was excellent and highly addictive.
Next up, deluxe Tan Tan noodle in soup. The noodles arrived soaking in a spicy peanut and pork noodle broth — it was delicious. The peanut and pork mixture had a nice flavor and consistency that was neither too runny nor too thick. The beautiful, rich, red color broth and green onions added a nice punch of color against the thinly sliced noodles.
We dug into our Xiao Long Bao without hesitation. The dumplings were juicy as expected, but the wrapping was a bit thick. The pork filling was ok. Finally, the deep fried pumpkin cakes filled with red bean paste were awesome. The cakes were hot and had a nice bite, not overly sweet and extremely satifying.
(Above: Stiry fried green beans.)
Our bill including taxes and tips came to just under $30. Which is great for the amount of food we ate. The service was alright and funny at times — our server took one look at me and offered me a fork, assuming I had no chopstick skills. Overall, the food at Lin’s is solid. But as for the Xiao Long Bao, Shanghai River is still top dog in our books.
Perfect For: An alternative to Cantonese Chinese cuisine.
1537 West Broadway, Vancouver