The Great Wall of China was constructed to keep roving packs of ancient pandas from absconding with the local cuisine. Succeed where the bears failed with today's deal: for $15, you get $30 worth of modern Chinese cuisine and drinks at Wild Rice, recently named an honourable mention on Vancouver magazine's Best Other Asian 2009 list.
Wild Rice serves up a fresh menu of contemporary Chinese fare, and the locally sourced and sustainably created dishes are served family style. Like a procession of curious and timid puppies, each dish arrives at the table when it is ready, further lubricating watering mouths with suspense and anticipation. Dig into some dim sum by summoning an order of the sloping hill pork and spot prawn siu mai ($6) or the vegetarian-friendly taro and potato croquettes ($6) to the table. Or, share an opinion on the current state of economic affairs and a bowl of hot and sour soup ($5) with a dining companion. Larger shareables range from sticky beef short ribs ($14) to a ling-cod medallion served with a tomato-cumin bath and bacon crisps ($13), as well as more than 10 vegetarian-friendly plates to perk up a withering plant-fed companion.
The eatery boasts a chic, contemporary décor, with a warm and understated colour palette, minimalistic furnishings, and a glowing, aquamarine bar. The extensive beer, wine, and cocktail collection make it an ideal place to linger after a long day in the mad science laboratory, so sidle up to the bar for a stem of the rich Matchbook ’06 syrah ($9) or a fresh Carrall Street cocktail, with vodka, bois passionfruit, tangerine, and an effervescent splash of Sprite ($8). Call ahead or go online for reservations.
Wild Rice won a Golden Plate award in 2007 from the Straight and an honourable mention in Vancouver magazine. The eatery was reviewed by Westender. DineHere users give it a three-star average, and TripAdvisors give it a 3.5-star average:
- After eight years sitting somewhat awkwardly off the beaten track, near the northwest corner of Pender and Abbott, nothing needs changing. Indeed, if I could alter anything about it, I would only move it next door to my house. – Andrew Morrison, Westender
- The place is very mod and set up more for socializing, drinking and grazing. – tylerlilly, TripAdvisor