On The Summer Night Market and Finally Meeting Romina!

You may know her as Small Girl Big Plate, but I’ve always known her as Romina, ‘that 365 Days of Dining Top 12 Finalist who I really, really want to meet.’  It’s true; Romina was one of Tourism Richmond‘s finalists for this very blogging position, a front runner who not only blogged full-time for the last year, but did so while in school, also full-time.  She starts med school this September.  Impressed?  You should be.

Romina and I have wanted to meet for ages, and finally set a date.  When?  Friday, August 17th.  Where?  The Summer Night Market in Richmond.  Why?  Because there’s so much to eat, and we both have pretty serious appetites.

We got there on the night market’s free shuttle, which leaves every 20 minutes from the east side of Bridgeport Station on Great Canadian Way (here’s a video giving directions to the spot).  The shuttle driver was very clear on which market we were going to; she’s clearly had more than one person going to one and thinking it was the other!  Remember, there are two competing night markets now in Richmond:  The Richmond Night Market, which started years ago, then took a hiatus and is back again this year, and the Summer Night Market, which has been around the last few years but is still considered by many to be ‘the new one.’  Yes, it can get confusing, but the shuttle driver will make it very clear where you’re going.  And fyi, you can walk from Bridgeport Station to the Richmond Night Market (RNM), where I went last month.

On the way there, Romina pulled this from her bag, a gift to congratulate me on landing the job.  What??  SO thoughtful.  I can’t wait to use it.

At least when it came to the food, The Summer Night Market appeared to be a smaller than the RNM, but maybe it just seemed that way because of the layout.  Either way, we were still bombarded by dishes, many of which we’d never seen before; take the breaded and deep-fried lychees for example, which came with a drizzle of fresh strawberry sauce.  Sweet, sour, crunchy, and juicy.

Though it seems impossible to call a deep-fried food “refreshing,” the deep-fried lychee were.  A favourite of the night.

Squid is very popular at this market and also a must-try.

There’s both grilled and deep-fried, and we went for the latter.  The squid legs were chewy, salty, a bit spicy, and seemed intent on escaping their cardboard container.

They’re also perfect for Movember.

Next, I insisted we get one of the smoked turkey legs, simply because they looked so medieval.  I pictured large bearded men feasting on them at mile-long banquet tables, with bones chucked to the floor to be fought over by the king’s dogs.  All that from meat on a grill?  Yes.  As I sat at on a plastic bench, gnawed on the turkey leg and got sauce on my face, I felt quite in the moment.  No dogs though.

In tribute to the day’s gloriously hot temperatures, Romina and I tried a bowl of fresh mango, ice cream, and shaved ice, as well as a watermelon juice.

The juice was cool, not too sweet, and perfect for summer.  While I really enjoyed the large scoop of fresh mango on the parfait, I found myself wishing the shaved ice was just more ice cream.

Plain old ice seems like such a letdown when there’s frozen cream to be had.

That wasn’t all for dessert, however.  We got ourselves a chocolate bubble waffle, which I now realize I forgot to take a photo of!  Whoops.  That’s probably because I was simultaneously clutching a turkey leg and eating the waffle.

www.realfoodtraveller.com

This treat has the sweet, crunchy, chewy exterior of a belgian waffle, and is pressed in a iron that forms it into ‘bubbles,’ which we pulled off one (or two, or three at a time) to snack on.  We both agreed it would be even tastier with some kind of dip or sauce.

Finally, we ordered a glutinous rice flour dumpling that had been stuffed with a whole Ferrero Rocher and deep-fried.  It was tasty, and quite a clever idea.  It was the first time I’d seen these at either of the markets.

My advice for the night markets is this: try them both!  The Summer Night Market was a little smaller and slightly harder to get to, but it had food the other one didn’t and vice-versa.  I can’t speak much to the compared quality of the non-food stalls, but no one really goes to a night market just to purchase an iPhone cover, do they?  DO THEY??

Both markets had live entertainment, and were bustling.  The Summer Night Market had more tables to sit at, and you don’t have to pay an admission.  The Richmond Night Market is easier to get to, has the Wishing Forest, and a more spread-out food area.  The best way to get to both markets is by transit – take the Skytrain to Bridgeport Station, and from there you can walk to the Richmond Night Market or take the free shuttle (departing every 20 minutes) to the Summer Night Market.  Just remember to take plenty of cash to both!  Pretty much everything we ordered was $6 or less, and many dishes cost $4.  It’s a good idea to have change on-hand so the vendors don’t have to split large bills.

If you’re arriving by car, here’s the info for parking at the Summer Night Market, and the Richmond Night Market has parking next to it, though you’re encouraged to arrive via No. 3 Road and not Great Canadian Way so as not to interfere with the nearby casino’s traffic.

Here are a few more photos from the Summer Night Market – If you haven’t gone to either market yet I suggest you do!  Bring some friends, make an evening of it, and plan on eating salad the next day.  After all that deep-fry, your stomach will need it.

Thanks again to Romina for joining me – I couldn’t have asked for a better night market partner!  And GOOD LUCK at med school!  I can offer you help with…..nothing.  I’m terrible at science.

You’ll find contact info and hours for both night markets at the bottom of this post.

 

Summer Night Market

12631 Vulcan Way, Richmond BC

Runs May 11th – September 16th, 2012

Fri/Sat: 7pm – 12am

Sun: 7pm to 11pm

604-278-8000

Open long weekends

Free shuttle runs to market from Bridgeport Station, departs every 20 minutes

Parking map

 

The Richmond Night Market

8351 River Road, Richmond BC

Runs May 18th – Oct. 8th, 2012

Fri/Sat: 7pm – 12am

Sun: 6pm – 11pm

Open long weekends

604-244-8448

Parking map

 

 

 

 

 

15 Comments

  1. Romina Moradi

    This post truly brought the biggest smile to my face! Thank you for your kind words. It was so wonderful meeting you and EATING with you!
    -R XO

    Reply
  2. John

    Inspiring! :)

    Reply
  3. GT

    Talk about amazing timing. We are organizing our evening with a Vancouver friend that is taking the Canada Line to meet us for a market evening. You didn’t know that you are my new best friend. You
    do the foot work and we eat the results.

    Reply
  4. Kathy

    Do the markets stay open into Sept?

    Reply
  5. Lulu Lady

    Hi Lindsay!

    Yet again another great post. I look forward to reading your blog everyday.

    Are the 2 night markets kid friendly?

    Keep up the good work!

    Reply
  6. Gillian

    Lulu Lady – we take our 21 month old to the market beside the Casino nearly every weekend. We only let him out of the stroller to run around between the vendor stalls if it’s not too busy (not between the food stalls where it’s always busy!) and in front of the stage area just past the entrance. There are lots of kid-friendly foods, depending on how adventurous your little people are. The Richmond Night Market (not the one reviewed in this post) normally has a great BBQ truck that offers chicken sliders for $3 each. My son seems to be a vegetarian but will gobble up two of these sliders on his own!

    Reply
  7. Laurette

    Great review & to share with another blogger. BTW great write up on you today in teh Sun.

    Reply
  8. KimHo

    Hmmmmm… Only *seven* “dishes” between the two??? C’mon, I know food bloggers who can do better!

    Reply
  9. Laurette

    on this blog how does one go back to your earlier reviews, apart from the side I am not able to find the first ones you posted at Congee place????
    thank you I must be missing something duh on my part??

    Reply
  10. Crista

    Hey Laurette- directly under the large grey ‘365’ dot/plate at the top of the page are the smaller words ‘365 days ‘ and that’s your link to all of it! :)

    Reply
  11. Margot

    Looks like an awesome time. It’s only 8:18AM and I am now starving for night market eats!

    PS, I really like how you’ve been adding the ‘more photos’ to your last couple of posts!

    Reply
  12. Kelly

    OMG I was at the same night market on August 17 and I TOTALLY thought I saw you but I didn’t want to go “Hiiiiiii” and looked like a fool when it wasn’t you…

    NOW I totally knew it was you!
    Great post! Thanks so much for making our mouths water every day.

    Reply
  13. Lilian

    Love the squid mo photo!

    The ‘waffles’ are egg puffs, a popular street food in Hong Kong.

    Reply
  14. Rosie

    You guys are so cute! The food looks so delicious at the Summer Night Market, but I’ve been only going to the Richmond Night Market due to the convenience factor.

    Reply

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