Sometimes the best food can be found in the most unlikely places. Case in point: One More Szechuan’s diverse menu of excellent Cantonese, Szechuan and Thai dishes served up at its inconspicuous location in Pemberton Plaza in North Vancouver.
Opened in 2016 by husband and wife team Carrie Ho and Patrick Xie, One More Szechuan takes menu and restaurant concept cues from a Vancouver-based Szechuan restaurant with a similar name that Xie’s family, who hails fromGuangzhou, China, worked at previously.
One year after opening One More Szechuan, business is steady (read: it’s not uncommon to have to wait for a table on a Saturday night). What draws customers is the sunny, lively vibe thanks to marigold walls, yellow pendant lamps and garage-style doors that stay open in the summer. Oh, and don’t forget Xie’s bubbly, outgoing personality, and the diverse flavours of the Asian cuisine, best served family-style.
The expansive lunch and dinner menu offers a variety of options to suit every palate and craving, whether it’s Lettuce Wraps, Moo Shu Pork or even Thai dishes (a treat for locals missing the Thai restaurant that previously occupied the space).
But for those that can take some heat, the Szechuan dishes come highly recommended. Everything is made using fresh ingredients, hand-selected by Xie’s famiy from the produce store each morning, many of which are chosen to balance the signature spice and richness. (Think crisp green and red peppers and cilantro tossed in with fried chicken morsels in the Spicy Chicken with Szechuan Peppercorn, and fresh Bok Choy sitting atop wide noodles, ground pork and Chinese pickle in the Dam Dam noodles.)
Acclaim from local food critics, and a passion for interacting with clients, has fueled Xie’s family restaurant management flame, and she would like to see even more customers walking through the doors. But Xie finds the location, nestled behind a Save-On-Foods in Pemberton Plaza, tough for business. Even the address, 1262 Marine Drive, is a bit misleading, as the restaurant is not right on Marine Drive. “I know what people like,” says Ho. “But people just don’t know we’re here.”
But once patrons find the location, they also find many reasons to come back. “We serve good food and we have good service,” Ho said. Take her word for it and give One More Szechuan a try (and don’t forget to wear your stretchy pants).