Sherman's Food Adventures: Lu Lu Kitchen

Lu Lu Kitchen

As I've mentioned over and over again, it always seems like Vancouver goes through phases of food crazes.  I'm sure this happens in other places as well, but since I live here, I get to witness the over-saturation of things when they become popular.  However, I've been wrong before about fads because bubble tea seems completely overdone yet it still seems to be going strong after all these decades.  One trend that has been around for a bit is the BBQ skewer.  We find dedicated restaurants as well as food stalls at the Richmond Night Market.  Originally, we were about to head into Richmond, but noticed there is finally one near my house. We decided to check it out with Nikita and Bluebeard.

Getting right to it, we had the Chicken Heart and Pork Rib.  I liked how they only require a minimum of 5 skewers for most of their items.  Some places require 10 and it greatly reduces the variety for small groups.  We found the chicken hearts to be cooked just enough so they were still juicy.  There was considerable heat to go with some sweetness.  The pork rib was mostly cartilage, yet there was a decent amount of meat as well.  Nice crispiness on the exterior.  Mild spice on this one with plenty of cumin.

Now the first 2 skewers we had were pretty solid, but the one that surprised us the most was the Chicken.  Yes, possibly the most boring item we ordered was also the most flavourful.  Also, they didn't skimp with the meat either.  These chunks of dark meat were marinated aggressively where they were sweet with caramelization from the grilling.  There was only a light char that added some smokiness.  

This is where the skewers started to arrive fast and furious (in a green Eclipse with Axis wheels no less! LOL).  Anyways, the next 2 skewers consisted of Lamb and Beef.  To differentiate, they put the lamb on longer skewers.  For me, the seasoning was very similar for both where there was some heat.  However, the lamb seemed to have a bit more cumin (like it should as it compliments the meat well).  In terms of texture, the lamb was fattier and hence more tender.

Our last 2 skewers were the Bean Curd Skin and Shrimp.  I really appreciated that the shrimp were deshelled.  This made it less messy to eat and frankly, for the marinate/spices to penetrate easily.  The shrimp were good having a snap texture.  I'm thinking that the bean curd skin could've been less chewy if they hydrated it more or grilled it less.  With that being said, it still had the appealing chewiness and was nicely spiced.

We got some sides as well including Cucumbers, Mung Bean Noodles, Eggplant and Green Beans.  I thought the cucumbers were good being crunchy and fresh.  Plenty of garlic to go with it too.  The mung bean noodles were their usual chewy slippery texture, but the sesame dressing was too thin making it rather messy to eat.  We loved the eggplant as it was full-flavoured and tender.  However, we hated the green beans because they were old and stringy.  But green beans withstanding, the rest of the food was generally decent and well-priced.  A good neighbourhood alternative to driving all the way to Kingsway or Richmond for skewers.

The Good:
- A reasonable minimum on skewers
- Well-priced
- Not skimpy on the portion size

The Bad:
- Some skewers could use more spice
- Those beans were not so good



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