Tri-Pot (鼎王滷味)

Restaurant: Tri-Pot (鼎王滷味)
Cuisine: Taiwanese/Chinese/Snacks/Noodles
Last visited: July 16, 2011
Location: Richmond, BC (Richmond Central)
Address: 100-7911 Alderbridge Way
Price Range: $10 or less

1: Poor 2: OK 3: Good 4: Very good 5: Excellent 6: Tres Excellent!!

Food: n/a
Service: 3
Ambiance: 3
Overall: n/a
Additional comments:

  • Very authentic Taiwanese fast food
  • Some imported Taiwanese ingredients
  • Specializes in offal
  • Stewed in house offal
  • Great for snack
  • Low carb
  • Made upon order
  • Very quick/very casual
  • Popular to Taiwanese locals
  • Budget friendly/cheap eats
  • Cash only
  • Open late
  • Free wifi
  • Free parking lot
  • Sun–Thur  4pm–12am
  • Fri & Sat  4pm–1am
  • Closed on Tuesdays

**Recommendations: n/a

Okay, so this set up is a little confusing. Unless someone told you about it or you were going to check out Zephyr Tea House Cafe, it is very unlikely that you will even notice Tri-Pot. This is the only signage it has, and you probably wouldn’t notice it unless you were lost in the parking lot.

Tri-Pot is the “restaurant” between its sister restaurants Zephyr Tea House Cafe and Delicious Cuisine. It’s not really a restaurant though and more of a component that operates in the same vicinity as Zephyr Tea House, which I blogged about here. All three restaurants are side by side, but each one is quite different, although all are still traditional Taiwanese.

The entrance to Tri-Pot is actually through the main entrance of Zephyr Tea House Cafe. I came to Zephyr back when it was called “Zephyr in the Sky” and Tri-Pot never existed then. It wasn’t until I was on one of my media tours with Tourism Richmond that I was reintroduced to Zephry Tea House and introduced to Tri-Pot.

Oddly enough, Tri-Pot is the first thing you’ll see when you walk into Zephyr Tea House. It’s a to-go only restaurant though so you really have to take it to-go. However, without leaving the same space you can literally walk 5 steps to the left, and you’ll be in Zephyr Tea House. I’m not sure if they’ll let you enjoy your Tri-Pot to-go items over at Zephyr, but they might if you order a drink or something.

So if you’ve never seen this before, don’t me intimidated. The menu is in Chinese and English and it’s really a one step process. You simply pick your items and watch as they prepare it. It’s almost like a food court stall and they’re very popular set ups in Taiwan. I’ve seen them on the streets of Hong Kong and in either case it is considered casual fast food or street food. The only difference, is that it’s somewhat healthier. I wouldn’t go as far to say it’s healthy though, but it can be depending on what you order. On the other hand it is low carb, although you can order it with noodles if you wish. If you’re from an offal eating culture, the image above may look like last night’s dinner, but if you’re from a more North American background, this photo may freak you out. Personally I’m in between. It doesn’t freak me out, but it doesn’t wet my appetite either. Don’t worry about not knowing what your food may look like, because they lay it all out for you.

Yes, I will admit it. I am not keen on organs, intestines, innards, gizzards, and offal in general. Will I try them or eat them? Sure, and I have, but will I jump at the chance or fight over them? No, I won’t. I also prefer European styles of offal compared to Asian styles of it. Pate and foie gras? I’ll fight you for that. It’s just more catered to my tastes and it looks more appetizing. Whereas the Asian kind is often “what you see is what you get”. Personally the only time I’ve enjoyed a full out offal meal was at Incanto – see here, which completely changed the way I looked and felt about offal. After experiencing that I now see offal as offal, and not as awful.

Tri-Pot is ideal for offal lovers. You basically pick your ingredients from their English and Chinese menu and then watch them cook it on the spot. So isn’t that just Tappenyaki or Mongolie Grill? Well, yes, but the ingredients are much different and there’s no frying or grilling here (although some packaged items are previously deep fried). I would consider it more like hot pot to go, except there’s no soup, and it’s just the ingredients.

Half the items are pre-boiled and stewed first in their own house stock, and the other half is raw or pre-cooked and packaged. Although boiling doesn’t get the flavour out of food, it’s the traditional way this type of food is prepared and it’s also meant to be somewhat healthy, so it is the appropriate method of cooking. You also get to chose your own sauces and spices so the customization and ultimate flavour is all up to you.

I shouldn’t say this is only for offal lovers though, because it’s not. Intestines, ears, shanks, hearts, wings, feet, necks, gizzards, pig skin, and tendons are the highlights and what many traditional Taiwanese people would go for, but they also offer less exotic items such as classic stir fry vegetables, assorted mushrooms, fish balls, pork balls, a variety of tofu, dumplings and noodles. So, in actuality, it’s really easy to go vegetarian or just seafood here.

A random fact from their site, but pig intestine is the most popular item here, followed by traditional Taiwanese style Blood Rice Cake imported from Taiwan, and then the Enoki mushrooms. To see their full list of ingredients see here.

Tri-Pot is quick, simple, easy and affordable at about $2-3 for each item. It is Vancouver’s first Taiwanese style low-carb snack, but can easily be enjoyed as a full meal. Personally I’m more likely to eat at Delicious Cuisine and then at Zephyr Tea House before I would at Tri-Pot, but they’re very different and Tri-Pot is the only thing of its kind to date.

On the table:

This is the finished product. They charge per ingredient and not by weight, although I wish it was by weight.

Tossed Ramen Noodle with Chicken Gizzards (Custom order)n/a

  • Taiwanese pickles and green onion will be added to each order. Optional hot sauce and cilantro are also available.
  • I tried it, but I don’t remember too much about it because I was saving room for other things we had on the table at Delicious Cuisine next door. Delicious Cuisine is their nicer sit down restaurant – see here.
  • Whatever you get at Tri-Pot will really depend on what you order anyways.

Spiced Dried Tofu, Fried Fish Cakes & Daikon  (Custom order)n/a

  • Taiwanese pickles and green onion will be added to each order. Optional hot sauce and cilantro are also available.
  • The rectangular slices are the spiced dried tofu, the oblong slice in the front is the fried fish cake, and the other clear jelly looking pieces are the daikon.


Tri-Pot (鼎王滷味) on Urbanspoon


  • Linda says:

    mmm very interesting dishes indeed! i’m a huge fan of offal and love things like pigs blood especially in my congee.. i really like the concept but because i also really love variety, i think this place would be uber expensive for me!

  • Mijune says:

    @linda – you’d need two containers!!! I really wish they did a 10% off if you bring your own container thing.

  • Bow says:

    I like Chinese BBQ house styled of chicken gizzard and duck liver and I love tripe…but I agree Mijune, Euro style pate,and foie gras is great. Sautéd lamb kidneys(after long soaking in milk , overnight, to draw out the ammonia smell) are delicious. Heart, is good but has a unique taste and texture which aome people wouldnèt enjoy. Not a fan of lung. Offal in Europe also encompasses pigs trotters, tongue, sweetbreads(luv them) , testicles, and brains. Iranian meat shops sell the lamb version(including lambs head).
    These three places serve interesting stuff, luv it.

  • Mijune says:

    @Bow – yes! At least it gives us variety and shows that the culture doesn’t waste. Lung I actually don’t know if I’ve tried before, but the sheep’s head was very popular in Spain and Greece too! Offal is very rich for me so I can’t have too much at a time, and it’s not something I like to overindulge in. Thanks for your insightful comment as usual!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.