Sunday, April 11, 2010

Golden Great Wall - a mixture of different Chinese cuisine


Golden Great Wall Szechuan

705 W Broadway, Vancouver

Golden Great Wall Szechuan on Urbanspoon

Food: 3.5
Service: 3.5
Price: Fair

When you got to a Chinese restaurant where combo meals are not served, you better go with a group of people. This way you can order a wide variety of dishes and sample way more food. For that reason, R and I rarely go to one of these. Finally we got the chance, when R's friends suggested this place, and we had a total of 6 people for that day.

I find it funny that Golden Great Wall Szechuan really is not a Sichuan cuisine restaurant, but they have it in their name. If anything I think they are more of a Shanghai cuisine restaurant. Regardless, they do serve a good variety of Chinese dishes from all the major provincesThe first thing we ordered was the Peking duck 3 ways (~$34.95). The first way of course is the duck skin wrapped with sweet sauce and scallion. The skin was crispy with a fine layer of oil still retained in between. Therefore although it was crispy, it was a bit oily too. My only complaint was that there isn't enough flour wrap for all the duck skin we had. The 2nd way the duck was prepared was sauteed duck meat with lettuce wrap. The duck meat was juicy and flavorful, you would also use same sweet sauce in this wrap as well. However eating this created a big mess. The sauce was dripping everywhere, and the stuffing was falling out, simply because the lettuce was too crispy. Now I am not really complaining about the lettuce, as I like them crispy, it just a warning that this dish can get messy fast.The 3rd way the duck was prepared was the duck bone soup with tofu and Chinese cabbage. The soup was flavorful with a hint of BBQ duck flavor. Also it wasn't too oily either.

I picked the pork hock (~$15.95), cause I simply love the glutinous skin. However this one was a disappointment, because the skin was too tough. Usually it would melt in your mouse (oops correction 'mouth' lol), but this required a lot of chewing. Also the lean portion was also not soft enough either. Despite the meat being too tough, the sauce was actually good, it was a nice balance between the soy sauce and rock sugar. The traditional Shanghai dish, minced pork ball (~$12) was good in my opinion. However some others did not like it. The reason I like it was because the meat was very tender, to a point it's almost questionable if it was fully cooked. I was totally fine after eating this, so I am going to say it was fully cooked. The pork balls were not simply all pork, they also had water chestnut mixed in.
The deep fried "squirrel" fish (~$17) with sweet and sour sauce tasted a lot like sweet and sour pork. I did not particularly care for the sauce, but that was not the biggest problem with this dish. The biggest problem is that the fish was too heavily battered, when I bite into it, there were almost no meat. Also it was over fried, as the coating was rather hard.
After all the meat, we got a plate of garlic stir fried Gai Lan (~$9). Although this was a simple stir fry veggie dish, it was very well done. The vegetable retained it's color and crunchiness. The vegetable was cooked with chicken stock as well, so it has that rich flavor with a medium garlic taste. Lastly, we had to get a basket of Xiao Long Bao, because I simply love them. Here at Golden Great Wall you get 10 for around $7.95. The skin was very thin, so you have to be really careful picking them up. It was also loaded with soup. The stuffing was a little hard in my opinion, too much starch. Other than that, these were great.

Sorry I can't remember the exact prices of anything, but it's pretty close to what I have listed. Service was actually good compare to other places. They filled our tea pot often, and occasionally they would smile too, that's rare for a Chinese restaurant. :P

Overall, we were satisfied with our food, and happy with the service. Although the prices were slightly higher than other places, but given the decor of the place, you would expect to pay that price. In the end, I would come back, but there are also tons of other Chinese restaurants in the area, which I think I will explore first.


KimHo April 11, 2010 at 10:28 PM

"Usually it would melt in your mouse"

Please don't tell me this has nothing to do with certain incident in a certain restaurant not long ago! :)

Jenny April 11, 2010 at 11:00 PM

LOL... oops, purely a typo, nothing to do with any restaurants ;) hehe

Anonymous April 15, 2010 at 4:57 PM

I love the Peking Duck at Golden Great Wall Restaurant because they are the cheapest and they have it every time we order. Some place you have to call 1 day advance... Every restaurant make them differently, some restaurant leave fat on, other restaurant pancake are too thick. I have to agree there Shanghai Dumplings is probably top 3 in Vancouver and I've had World wide Shanghai Dumpling and Golden Great Wall makes them perfect every time!

Anonymous April 16, 2010 at 1:34 PM

It's easy to forget that most restaurant, like Golden Great Wall that has been here for decades tend to sell whats popular. Kirin and Sun sui wah has items that is from other regions. I've had Shanghai dumplings at Kirin many times and they are supposedly survive Cantonese cuisine but they don't. I've eaten at caucus club cafe and they serve Italian, Chinese, and Mexican.

Jenny April 16, 2010 at 2:37 PM

It's very true, Now days it's hard to find a restaurant that only serve 1 type of food.

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