Rainflower has changed ownership & chef, so this post may no longer apply.
Please see my post for Rainflower Restaurant – Review 3.
Restaurant: Rainflower Restaurant – Review 2
Cuisine: Dim Sum/Chinese/Asian
Last visited: November 11, 09
Area: Richmond, BC
3600 No 3 Road
TeL: 604 278-7288
Price Range: $10-20
1: Poor 2: OK 3: Good 4: Very Good 5: Excellent 6: Tres Excellent!!
Food: 4.5 (gone up because I’ve tried more dishes now)
- Considered a higher end dim sum restaurant
- Traditional and creative dim sum dishes
- Discount if you arrive before 11am
- Some hit and miss dishes, most are hits
- Ordering form service
- Busy, but plenty of seating
- Spacious, fancy set up
- Serves dim sum and dinner
- Private rooms/banquets available
**Recommendation: Rainflower shrimp dumpling aka “har gow”, Pan fried prawn with basil, fried spicy leatherjacket fish, items with prawns are pretty good
So I’ve now had dim sum at Rainflower Restaurant on numerous occasions. It is quickly approaching as our go-to dim sum restaurant. The more I try at the restaurant the better my recommendations get because I’m working my way throughout their menu. By giving a 2nd review I’m also able to notify diners when the quality of a dish has changed since restaurants can change recipes/menus/chefs/cooks often.
For my 1st review on Rainflower Restaurant
- **Pan Fried Prawn with Basil 6/6
- 10 huge prawns pan fried with fresh sweet basil and green onions $7.80
- Wow! These are amazing! My first time ordering and now it’s going to be a staple dish on the table whenever I go back.
- There’s a few basil leaves and a mix of onions and green onions. They’re not caramelized, but nice and crunchy. You get 10 prawns and they’re really really big. Besides the prawns the sauce really makes this dish. It’s so flavourful you almost want to eat the shells too.
- It’s a honey soy based sauce, but it’s not thick and it tastes amazing! It’s sweet, salty, tangy, spicy and the prawns are perfectly tender. It’s spicy because there’s lots of freshly cracked pepper cooked into the sauce. It’s not that reduced, which is ok because the flavour is so intense and aromatic at the same time.
- Marinated Conch in Japanese Style 3.5/6
- Marinated conch, masago and red and green seaweed.
- I didn’t name it, but that’s the name it’s under on the menu.
- This dish is not traditional Chinese so I don’t think it’s a very popular item for people to order. It’s definitely a fusion dish you would expect to see at an Izakaya place rather than a dim sum place.
- It was more like a conch salad to me. It’s served cold and there’s not that many ingredients, but it’s very fresh in ingredients and flavours.
- It doesn’t have a fishy taste besides the masago, which they give you tons of.
- The conch is almost like squid but it’s more tender and maybe even more chewy. It’s sliced into bite sizes and mixed with a generous about of yellow masago (cod roe) and crunchy fresh green and red seaweed.
- The dish is nice and salty and has a variety of textures, from crunchy to chewy, and even a little slippery.
- I liked it because it was different and interesting to try, but I wouldn’t order it again unless there were more people who wanted to try it. It’s pretty big too.
- Shredded Chicken in Sesame Sauce 3/6
- Some other places will use jellyfish in the recipe. Instead of jellyfish, Rainflower makes it crunchy by using pickled vegetables, celery, cucumber, and wonton crisps. Served chilled $.650.
- The wonton crisps got soggy though because rather than using them as a garnish they mixed them with all the other wet ingredients.
- There was also almost no sesame sauce. The dish is usually drizzled with sesame sauce you can see. It was very lightly marinated and the flavour came from the natural juices of the ingredients used. It was salty and tangy and still good, but much better with sesame sauce…which is expected for this dish. It’s in the name of it right?
- Barbeque Pork & Golden Corn Rice Roll 1/6
- Pieces of Chinese barbecue pork and corn wrapped in a rice roll $4.68
- This was the most disappointing dish I’ve ever ordered here. It is way better at other places.
- The stuffing in these rice rolls were clumpy, which is a good indication that they weren’t fresh. The barbeque pork pieces were very fatty and not fresh. The quality was very poor and you can see it in the picture. The pieces were so fatty they were white and not even red. The corn kernels were frozen, which is ok, but they overcooked them and they got soggy.
- Seafood Bean Curd Skin Roll 2/6
- Fish/seafood paste wrapped in bean curd and steamed in a clear seafood broth/sauce.
- This was one of their monthly specials at the time…but it was nothing special…
- It was basically fish paste, the same thing they use for fish balls, but rolled into logs and wrapped in sheets of bean curd. It came with this “sauce” that was thicker than a broth, but thinner than an actual “sauce”. It was savoury but very light tasting and one dimensional in flavour.
- Baked BBQ Pork Buns 2.5/6
- This is my 2nd review for this dish. They changed the recipe and they improved the filling, but not the topping. I gave it .5 higher because nothing really improved, but I would eat these ones before the original ones.
- They have a lot more filling than they use to so there’s a better ratio of filling to bun.
- They changed the topping from a “Pineapple Bun” topping to a “Mexican Bun” topping. (These are just what the translations are, but there’ not pineapple/Mexican ingredients used). The pineapple bun topping is more crumbly and crunchier, while the Mexican topping is softer and crumbly. However they didn’t make a good Mexican topping here because it wasn’t crumbly. It looked really fake. Maxim’s, the Chinese bakery, does a much better job with this topping.
- To see the original version with the “Pineapple” topping: (scroll to Baked BBQ Pork Buns)
- Steamed Black chicken Wrapped in Lotus Leaf 2/6
- Steamed black chicken marinated and cooked with Chinese herbs and Gogi berries $5.80
- I’m not a fan of this dish, but the older generations usually are. So for me it was a 2/6, but for them it was a 3/6. It has a very Chinese herbal flavour and tastes like chicken cooked in tea.
- Black chickens are also a lot bonier and there’s not much meat on them, but a lot of skin…that isn’t crispy. So overall this dish had flavours, textures, and appearance that didn’t suit me.
For my 1st review on Rainflower Restaurant
The conch dish… Is that really conch or periwinkle? I.e., does it look like slice of surf clam sashimi or were small individual pieces? And, finally… How do you manage to order so much food (and eat it)???? I guess you were with family, hehehehe.
No it was actually conch, but sliced up. And I was with family…Sunday brunch. Yes I do eat a lot…but even all this would be A LOT for me lol!
Rainflower is my favourite dim sum spot in Richmond. Well, I haven't tried many places because I just keep going back. They have such unique dishes and there's always something new to try. It is on the pricey side, but the quality is there. Plus, they give coupons for your next visit!
Hi Lucy! Thanks for reminding me about them giving coupons! I always forget about that. Yes I agree, it is a bit pricier, but it's a nice change from Kirin if you're used to going their for gourmet dim sum.
Hope you were able to get inspired by some of the dishes I tried, unless you've tried them all already…then I hope you just enjoyed my review. Thanks for reading =)
Hi Follow Me Foodie,
When I first saw this restaurant after XS Cargo left, I thought the outside looked hideous and vowed not to go in! After reading your review, I am convinced in trying their pan fried prawns with basil!
Hi Michelle! It’s actually quite grand/royal inside, although it’s also a bit mismatched and all over the place. Definitely try the prawns and also the shrimp dumplings are very good too. If you like durian people really like their durian pastry rolls for dessert. Let me know what you think!