Vancouver is a popular destination for many local people. An easily accessible city, surrounded by the Pacific Northwest’s signature mountains and coastline. In addition to its natural beauty, the city is also known for its food and the biggest night market in North America.
Running from May to Oct on weekends and holidays, the Richmond Night Market receives one million hungry visitors a year. By 7p Friday, a line has already run down the length of the market. Above: Fish Sticks. Richmond Night Market’s Top-10 Must Eat
General admission is $3.25 person, but for $20 you can buy a Zoom Pass and skip the line. Good for up to seven people, it can be used on future visits if your group is smaller. The passes are sold just before the main entrance. Not sure what these guys were waiting for. Maybe makes the food taste better?
Featuring over 200 retail vendors, games, and entertainment, there’s something for everyone. But the main attraction is the food court. Below: Posing and pouring. Japanese beef bowls.
A total of 80 different stalls serve nearly every Asian dish imaginable, both familiar and ones you didn’t think of. According to Vancouver Sun, the city is the ‘most Asian’ outside of Asia, so it’s no wonder the market reflects its heritage. Below: No Asian market is complete without takoyaki.
Items average $6-8. Go with a group to try as many as possible. Below: The Squid Co. Grilled squid legs. Hot & Spicy. Served piping hot on a cool summer night.
Other highlights included BKH Jerky, featured on Dragons’ Den (the original BBC version of Shark Tank). Freshly made Singapore style pork and beef jerky. Sweet and savory. Slightly sticky, seasoned with an extra spicy dry rub that kicks at the throat.
Chef James, Xin Jiang Man BBQ. Skewered meats, simply grilled on an open flame. One of the most popular stalls of the night. Hungry customers crowded the stall, anxious to get their fix.
Not a huge fan of crowds or kabobs, it wasn’t first on my list, but worth the wait. Nicely seasoned and smoky. Perfect char to lock in the juices.
Just next to Chef James’ BBQ, Fish Sticks. No hangry mob out front, but the #1 dish of the night and possibly the entire trip. So popular, it’s not uncommon to be sold out.
Huge piece of flaky white fish with a light crisp batter, drizzled with chili mayo and a squeeze of lemon. Be sure to order more than one. You can thank me later…with a fish stick!
Tender and perfectly fried. The sticks tear into hot fluffy pieces and is gone in minutes. Was it a dream? Maybe not, but these sticks are so good, they’ll haunt me forever.
Water cake, aka mizu shingen mochi, made from water, sugar and agar. Not actually mochi, but a play on a similar mochi dessert. The clear water droplet cuts like a solid, but if left too long will dissolve at room temperature.
Almost too pretty to eat. The gelatin is delicate and sweet. Reminiscent of mochi, it’s served with nutty kinako and kuromitsu syrup.
Another sweet on the bucket list, tanghulu. Skewered fruits coated in hot liquid sugar, left to harden and cool. The Chinese dessert is traditionally made with the hawthorn fruit–the same fruit used to make haw flakes. The haw resemble mini candied apples. Each one is filled with a fruit paste, slightly bitter with more tannins than the childhood classic.
We ordered three sticks total, traditional haw, green grape, and strawberry. The candy shell, thick and crispy. The fruit, sweet and slightly warmed. The perfect cure for your sweet tooth.
With literally hundreds of different items, the list of winners goes on. So next time you think of Vancouver, remember it’s a short five hour flight from Hawaii to the Pacific Northwest and one of the most beautiful scenes in all of North America–The Richmond Night Market.