Chang An Vancouver 品味長安 is Chinese fine dining restaurant in Vancouver’s waterfront. It is one of the first of several high end Chinese restaurant to open in Vancouver. Chang An is brought to you by the China Folk Restaurant from Beijing renowned brand dedicated in offering classic Shaanxi Cuisine. Located on False Creek under the Granville Street Bridge next to Ancora, it replaces the space formerly occupied by Stone Grill and Nu.
The restaurant is completely renovated and exquisite. Modern chandelier lighting is charismatic yet approachable. Chopsticks holder are ornate ducks. Chang ‘An’s menu is pricey and caters to wealthy clientele. However, don’t feel alienated. The staff were friendly and warm. It is one of the first Chinese restaurants in Vancouver that is on Open Table.
Guo Kui Pita 鍋盔: Complimentary appetizer to start the evening with pita and a spicy Doubanjiang Fermented Bean Paste 豆瓣酱.
- Honey Grapefruit Spare Ribs 西柚蜜汁糖醋排 – tender ribs with a nice sweet tangy glaze
- Tossed Cilantro, Scallion & Red Peanut Salad 陕西大拌菜 – a nice appetizing starter
- Marinated Mushroom 迷你小香菇 – cold appies with a lightly marinated with black vinegar
- Crispy Beef Tongue 脆皮牛舌 – soft beef tongue lightly breaded but oily given the inherent texture and being deep fried.
Chang’an Roasted Duck長安炙鴨: Chang An Signature dish and only available by reservation. This Beijing Roast Duck or Peking Duck 北京烤鸭 uses A-grade ducks are selected and processed for 72 hours and roasted in-house for over an hour.
Most restaurants purchase their ducks from BBQ shops and then re-fry them prior to serving. Chang’an schedules the cooking process according to your time of reservation to ensure optimal tenderness of the meat and crispiness of the skin. For example, if your reservation is at 7pm – your duck will arrive approx 7:15 pm for optimal enjoyment.
Although the Roasted Duck is $88, it sells out quickly. The duck offers a table side presentation: crispy duck skin is gently carved on a cart and plated.
Chang’an Roasted Duck長安炙鴨: 1st Course
Duck skin with brown sugar. Duck meat with hand-made flour wrappers and served with hoisin sauce with cucumbers and also strawberry sauce with pears. The skin crispy and not oily. I prefer traditional hoisin sauce instead of the sweet strawberry jam albeit interesting pair. I also liked dipping the crispy duck skin in brown sugar. Who knew it would melt and be so delicious paired that way!
Chang’an Roasted Duck長安炙鴨: 2nd Course
The second part of the Peking Duck is the 5 Spice Duck Ribs 椒鹽鴨架. This can also be made in noodles in duck soup. The five spices is fragrant and the meat is soft and moist.
Imperial Hot & Sour Soup回坊酸辣湯: The soup is unlike your typically hot and sour soup. There is a residual heat that lingers on your palate. A piece of Chinese donut is served on the side. Choose to dip into your soup or use it as a palate cleanser should the heat become too unbearable. The golden soup stand serving the soup itself, just makes it that much more grand.
House Special Fried Chili Lobster 香辣龍蝦: this spicy mala lobster with lotus and peppers was quite something. I liked the subtle fiery heat and the fun addition of crispy fries.
Szechwan Peppercorn Sliced Beef 鮮椒木桶肥牛: If you haven’t caught on by now, there are a lot of spicy dishes in Northern China Shaanxi repertoire. This thinly sliced fatty beef is tender. The broth is fragrantly heated and served with enoki mushroom and tofu noodles.
To be honest, when it first came out, I thought it was tofu pudding!
Chang’an Gourd Chicken 長安一品葫蘆雞: Generally speaking it is a small chicken deep fried. Traditional recipes calls for a long boil in soy sauce and marinated in herbs, breaded in flour, corn starch and egg. It is then flash fried to give you that crispy and flaky exterior. This chicken was flavorful and still quite moist.
Braised Sea Cucumber 長安蔥燒海參: Sea cucumbers are gelatinous in texture and is a delicacy in Chinese cuisines. Sea cucumbers itself are flavorless. It is marinated and braised to soak up the flavors of the ingredients and seasoning it is cooked in. At Chang An it is braised for 48 hours with 20 different herbs and spices.
Asians love to serve this during holidays and special occasions typically with braised Chinese mushrooms, fish maw and other gourmet ingredients.
If you have never eaten Sea Cucumber, keep an open mind (any perhaps get your mind out of the gutter too).
Braised Whole Chili & Spring Onion Cod 蔥椒魚: This mild looking fish broth is anything but mild. It resembles a Sichuan spicy “water-boiled” fish 水煮鱼 with lots of kick and residual heat. The fish is deliciously oily and flaky. It is bouncy and cooked perfectly.
Sweet & Sour Lychee & Prawns 貴妃荔枝蝦球: A nice stir fry that has a sugary glaze. I liked this choice of Lychee sweetness that carries a hint of tartness that is unique.
Pork Belly Mini Sliders 老陝臘汁肉夾饃: Pork sliders stewed in slow heat in the aged sauce consisting of over 20 spices and ingredients such as cloves, nutmeg, ginger and cooking wine.
Qin Style Roast Lamb Leg 秦味烤羊腿: Presented like you would in a high tea set on two tiers. The lamb has a rich flavor with lots of herbs and spices.
It is served with Chinese Sesame ShaoBing bread pockets 北京燒餅.
King Mushroom Casserole 石板菌菇: A nice presentations of neatly stacked mushrooms. Flavors are clean and earthy. Great for anyone who loves their spores.
Are you still with me? Hope you are still awake and haven’t had a food coma yet. We are near the end of this epic aggressive gluttonous feast.
Biang Biang Noodles 油潑辣子麵: Shaanxi special hot chili sauce. What is Biang? It is the most sophisticated Chinese character word which also means a kind of traditional Chinese cuisine – a type of hand-made noodle with a wide width.
Three Sauce Noodle 三合一臊子扯麵: Minced beef, tomato, egg, celery, carrot, potato and tofu.
Yellow Bean Cake, Red Bean Cake 豌豆黃, 紅豆年糕: Something simple just to tie the meal on a sweet note.
This was a gluttonous meal!
I was invited by ChineseBites along with few fellow bloggers for menu tasting at Chang’An Vancouver 品味長安.
Cuisine: Seafood, Chinese, Fine Dining
1661 Granville Street, Vancouver, BC V6Z 1N3