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Canada Wins Chinese Gold
by Mark Schatzker
Vancouver may be hosting the WInter Olympics, but it also seems to triumph in dumpling devouring. Over 38 meals in 12 restaurants, our indefatigable writer beholds the thrill of noodle pulling. (Warning: Don't read this on an empty stomach)
Forget about dumpling hunting in San Francisco. Cancel that pilgrimage to Flushing, Queens, for fish ball soup. If it's Chinese food you're after, pack your chopsticks for Vancouver—and say a silent thanks to geopolitics as your plane lands. It was 1997's repatriation of Hong Kong that began the mass influx of Chinese to British Columbia's lower mainland, a migration which continues to this day, fueled in part by Canada's immigrant-friendly policies. Today, almost one in five of Vancouver's two million residents is ethnically Chinese.
Combine those demographics with the city's legendary seafood and you have the recipe for an outsize number of extremely good Cantonese, Shanghainese, and Szechuan restaurants. According to local Chinese food critic and writer Stephanie Yuen—who was born in Hong Kong and has eaten extensively there, in mainland China, and in Taiwan—Vancouver is home to the best Chinese food in the world. Period. Perhaps that explains why visitors from Beijing, Shanghai, and Guangzhou have started showing up in Vancouver just to eat the food they so love. Maybe it's time you did likewise.
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