Sunday, November 23, 2008


'Shiok' is commonly used in Malaysia & Singapore.
It conveys a feeling of strong physical/emotional pleasure, excitement or tingling taste buds(when used with regards to food), as in "Wow! This chilli padi/wasabi is damn SHIOK!"

We went into Vancouver yesterday for Laurel's dad's memorial service, which was a very touching affair with some moving tributes by Laurel's brother Dan, and a few of Ed's professorial colleagues. Ed was a respected scholar, and it was wonderful to see how much he was loved and missed by so many people. Laurel and the rest of the family went for a private interrment ceremony, and I drove the boys around for a few hours doing errands and such. I took them to the Pink Pearl for a Dim Sum treat for lunch. Either my tastes are improving, or the old Pearl is showing its age. The Dim Sum was oily, and cold to room temperature at best. Perhaps it was an off day. Or year.

After the reception, we were in the mood for something uplifting, so we both turned to each other an said "Orchid Delight!" in near unison. This is a brilliant little restaurant that I've been going to for well over a 14 years. The original location was in a weird little strip mall next to a Mac's convenience store and a donut shop. It was within walking distance from my old office at Electronic Arts, so it was a regular lunch stop, with sometimes 2 or 3 visits in a week. A few years ago, they moved out, and a terrible cry of sorrow was heard across the land. Where else to go for laksa? They resurfaced a couple of years ago at a new location on Burrard, just north of Broadway. Same owners, same cook, nearly identical menu. Huzzah!

Pauline and Michael are the owners. Pauline does front of house, and Michael is the cook. Many years in Malaysia and Singapore inform the absolute authenticity of Michael's cooking. It's a real family run gem. Over the years, we have become friends, and I've gone from being a long haired overworked skinny solo geek to a guy who brings his entire family in to dine. We always get a warm welcome and hugs, and when he can, Michael always makes a point of coming out to sit with us and visit to catch up on family news. Very sweet people.

So last night, we had the fabulous deep fried tofu with chili and peanuts, Char Kway Teow noodles, Ayam goreng chicken, and beans done with chili and shrimp paste. Simply awesome. I've been trying to find a way to give this place some props for a while, and now I have an excuse.

Go see Pauline and Michael. Tell 'em Rob and Laurel sent ya'.... It's damn shiok!


2445 Burrard Street, 604-731-0221.
Open Tuesday to Saturday 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m., Tuesday to Sunday 5 p.m. to 9 p.m.


Bex said...

Yeah, it's our fave, too.. Dave adores the crispy tofu salad, I'm all about all about the spicy chicken with cashews. And three blocks from Dave's!!
Highly recommended!

Tapas and Dim Sum said...

Ohhh, solly Lobat, but Pink Pearlo no good, it's for gwai-lo. You try Happy Varrey, you get BIK shlimp dumpring! Food is leally rie.

Murray A said...

Rob....Was that the little Singaporian restaurant tucked away with the shops at Moscrop and Willingdon? We used to go in there so often when we lived behind BCIT. I became 'best friend' when we went there the night I arrived after escorting the PM (as he was called) of Singapore and some of his 'elected' officials who traveled onboard the Rocky Mountaineer from Banff to Vancouver.

Tyler & Ross said...

Hey Rob and Laurel,

Ross and I have wanted to write you two for some time now to let you know how much we are enjoying reading your blog (we check in daily).
You are both terrific writers and when we read your posts it feels as though we are right there with you, smelling, seeing, tasting... We've had some really great belly laughs. Thank-you both for sharing your experiences with all of us...

We've been meaning to check out this restaurant "Orchid's Delight" ever since reading your recommendation. Last Friday we decided to have an adventure to the city to enjoy some new culinary experiences. We arrived at 2445 Burrard only to find "Atithi - Indian Cuisine" emblazoned on the awning. Upon further investigation, we were told we missed out by only three weeks. Unfortunately, Michael's mother's health has turned for the worse, and they sold their business lock stock and telephone number. After a few moments of feeling disappointment we decided in the spirit of you two being in India, perhaps this was a sign to give them a try. The Bailey's Law of inverse expectations came into effect when our appetizer arrived with a side of French fries. Okay, the rest of the meal wasn't terrible, but 'nuf said!

Anxiously awaiting the next chapter of your great adventure...