Rediscover British Columbia’s unique blend of world flavors

By Destination BC, The Seattle Times, Sep. 24, 2021

After a year and a half of staycations and local day trips, many people are ready to revisit some favorite places and discover new adventures. Fortunately, there’s an exciting international destination just a three-hour drive from Seattle: British Columbia.

Despite being so close, B.C. feels like it’s a world away. The diverse culinary scene makes it an ideal destination for travelers who love to embrace new cuisines and are looking for a sense of connection to a new place this fall or any time of year. Read more…

See the World, in Canada

By Elaine Glusac, New York Times, July 21, 2021

Beginning Aug. 9, Canada plans to reopen its border to nonessential American visitors — including tourists — as long as they are fully vaccinated. The decision comes after months of public pressure, largely from states and communities that share the 5,500-mile border and experienced more than a year of family separation, lost work and social upheaval. In recent weeks, Canada’s vaccination rate has surged – Oxford University’s Our World in Data site shows Canada leading the world in vaccinations — with 70 percent of residents at least partially vaccinated, approaching Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s vaccine targets for reopening. Americans traveling to Canada must be fully vaccinated with one of the vaccines approved in Canada – including Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna, AstraZeneca and Johnson & Johnson – and submit proof via the government’s ArriveCAN app or website. They must also provide proof of a negative Covid-19 test taken within 72 hours of arrival in Canada.
With the relaxed restrictions, tourism officials are banking on an influx of visitors, not just to see family and friends, but to travel in a vast country rich with cultural influences from around the world. Read more…

Significant public health and safety concerns bring 24-hour HPD patrols to Chinatown

By Sam Spangler, HONOLULU (KHON2), Jul 6, 2021

HONOLULU (KHON2) — The City and County of Honolulu is beefing up police presence in Chinatown.

The mandate will put Honolulu Police Department boots on the ground in the area. Six officers will be paired off into groups to provide 24-hour patrols seven days a week.

The six-hour patrol shifts will be done on foot between North King and North Beretania from River St. to Bishop St.

City Managing Director Michael Formby wrote a letter to the Honolulu City Council saying he and Mayor Blangiardi are finalizing a plan with HPD to ensure compliance with COVID-19 emergency orders and laws. Read more…

Food Films And Documentaries To Binge Watch Under Quarantine

By MICHELIN Guide Taipei Editorial Team, Mar 31, 2020

These documentaries, feature films and a talk-of-the-town Japanese TV drama offer a peek into the lives and minds of the world’s top chefs and their MICHELIN-starred kitchens.

There is no need to stare blankly at your four walls if you are staying home to practice social distancing. Whether you’re a movie buff or a serious foodie, these documentaries, feature films and drama series lift the curtains on the world of fine-dining and the workings of MICHELIN-star kitchens around the world, one sumptuous scene at a time. Read more…

David Chang pays René Redzepi a visit at Noma in Copenhagen (Photo: Still from The Mind Of A Chef)

5 Questions With Chef Susur Lee On The Future Of Chinese Cuisine

By Kenneth Goh, Michelin Guide Global, Aug 12, 2019

The Toronto-based celebrity chef, who co-helms the MICHELIN Plate Chinese restaurant TungLok Heen, shares his advice for young Chinese chefs.

Whenever celebrity chef Susur Lee travels, he keeps an eye out for that one good idea to bring back to Toronto, where he runs restaurants including Lee and Kid Lee. Things that have caught his attention can span from ingredients such as long black peppercorns from Cambodia to how a deboned chicken drumstick is served like a popsicle in a street stall in Qingdao.

Speaking to The MICHELIN Guide Digital during a recent trip to Singapore, Lee says: “I need that one great idea, be it from ingredients to a dish, and I enjoy making my rendition of dishes that I see overseas when I am back in my kitchen at home.” Read more…

The steamed White Sultan Fish with Crunchy Scales is one of the revamped dishes at TungLok Heen. (Photo: TungLok Heen)

Investigation: Is Vancouver’s Chinatown dying?

By Mike Howell, Vancouver is Awesome, Jun 17, 2021

Pandemic-triggered increases in store closures, street disorder and anti-Asian racism have slammed the historic community, with a contrasting mix of unease and optimism among those who remain and those who left.
For more than a year now, Helen Chu has stood behind the counter of her flower shop in the Chinatown Plaza and hoped for something that rarely occurs these days: a visit from a buying customer.
On a recent Monday morning, over the space of three hours, Chu received four online orders for small flower arrangements, but no walk-in customers. Read more…

A man walks by a heavily graffitied business on Keefer Street in Chinatown, which had a commercial vacancy rate of more than 23 per cent in 2020. Some community leaders suggest the rate is even higher this year. Photo Mike Howell

Western-Chinese food is authentic — and isn’t white washing our culture

by Kathryn Mannie, CBC, Jun 22, 2021

Dismissing this cuisine also dismisses the legacy of chefs like my grandparents.

“Sik jor fahn mei ah? Have you eaten yet?”

This common Cantonese greeting indicates just how closely Chinese culture associates food and well-being. My gung gung (maternal grandfather) fiercely proclaims that food and money are the two most important things to possess — in that order.

Like many second- and third-generation Chinese-Canadians, I was partially raised by my grandparents while my parents worked full time.

And at the centre of their home was the kitchen. Read more…

Though we can’t gather at our usual dim sum restaurant anymore, my family still gets together every Sunday around noon to share a meal. I join in virtually when I’m in Toronto. (Kathryn Mannie)