Corner 23 – Vancouver, BC

I had heard about the famous pork hock dish at Corner 23 and decided to go there for lunch when I was in town back in May. Corner 23, as the name suggests, is a Bubble Tea Cafe on the corner of 23rd Avenue and Cambie St. The food menu at Corner 23 is quite extensive and mainly focuses around Taiwanese cuisine.

For an appetizer, we ordered the Wan Luan Pork Hock ($8.95). Since this is the signature dish at Corner 23, there are actually many versions of this dish on the menu, including some that come with rice or noodle soup. We decided we just wanted a small order of the pork hock only as we wanted to try other dishes too.  The signature pork hock was pretty tasty. The meat was tender and flavourful. I was actually surprised the meat itself didn’t taste as fatty as it sounds. It was only the part attached to the skin that was more fatty and a bit on the chewy side. The pork hock was served with a special dipping sauce. It tasted very garlicky and I thought it went really well together with the pork hock.

Next up was the Deep Fried Chicken Nuggets ($5.75). I thought this dish was ok. The crispy chicken pieces were not as tender and juicy as I would have liked. Flavour-wise, it didn’t really have a wow factor either. I did like the basil leaves although I wish there were more and interspersed throughout to give the chicken more flavour.

We also ordered a couple of snacks. The Egg Pancake ($2.95) consisted of a thin egg & cilantro omelet inside a thin wrapper and formed into a roll. It was served with a soy-based dipping sauce. Personally, I didn’t really get this dish. To me, it was kind of bland and not very interesting texture-wise.

The Pork Pot Sticker ($4.95 for 6 pieces) were nicely pan-fried. The wrapper was crispy on the outside and the pork filling was tender on the inside.

We also ordered the Deep Fried Silk Thread Roll ($3.50). Like usual, it was served with a container of condensed milk. I thought this dish was well executed. The silk thread roll was crispy on the outside and soft on the inside.

I also wanted to try the Chicken with Three Spice ($7.95) as I was curious how it compares to the version at Kalvin’s. This dish was ok. The chicken was flavourful but not as tender as the version we had at Kalvin’s.  Even though it was flavourful, I thought the flavour combination at Kalvin’s was better balanced, brighter, and more memorable. Overall, it wasn’t a bad dish, but it didn’t have a wow factor either.

Lastly , we had the Beef with Black Pepper & Egg Fried Rice ($7.25). This was actually one of my favourite dishes of this meal. The fried rice was well executed and freshly fried. I could actually taste the “wok hei” in this dish, which is the essence and flavour imparted by a very hot wok during stir-frying. I liked the addition of the diced lettuce as it added a nice crunch to the dish.

Overall, I thought the food as Corner 23 was decent, especially considering how inexpensive the dishes are. For what it is, a Bubble Tea Cafe, the food is actually pretty good. My favourite dishes were the signature Wan Luan Pork Hock and the fried rice.  I’d go back again and order those two dishes along with the pot stickers and the deep fried silk thread roll.

Corner 23
4008 Cambie St.
Vancouver, BC
(604)709-9788

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This entry was posted in British Columbia, Chinese, eat, Lunch, Taiwanese, Vancouver and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Corner 23 – Vancouver, BC

  1. grayelf says:

    I notice you didn’t mention the bubble tea we had with this meal. Were you just being kind? It was the second worst BBT I’ve had in my limited exposure to same, plus they got my order wrong and had to redo it…

    • miss.foodie says:

      Yes, I was being kind. You know me so well! 🙂 I agree with your assessment of the BBT. I had read a few blog posts where people liked the BBT at Corner 23. It made me wonder why I didn’t like it. I’m no BBT connoisseur so I decided not to comment on the quality. All I can say is that the only BBT that has impressed me so far was the place (Tea Island) in Fremont, CA where they actually use real brewed tea in their BBT.

      • You mean they weren’t using brewed tea? Any bubble tea place worth its salt would have to use brewed oolong or brewed green jasmine as their tea bases — otherwise, what’s the point?

        The best dish at Corner 23 is probably the pork hock — but then again, I’m not much of a pork hock fan (as in I don’t crave it). Most of the dishes are serviceable but not memorable. A few of their dishes I find too sweet for my taste (including the beef noodle).

        • miss.foodie says:

          Hi JS,
          I’ve always wondered whether any of the places in YVR use real brewed tea. I’m no BBT expert but I couldn’t taste the fragrance of the brewed tea in most of the BBTs I’ve had in YVR. To me, it tastes like they use concentrate or powder or something. That’s partly why I’m usually not a BBT fan. The only place that I tried on this recent visit to YVR where I thought the BBT was good was Bubble Queen in Richmond. Both Grayelf and I liked our BBTs from there. But even then, I didn’t think the fragrance of the tea was as good as Tea Island in Fremont, CA. At Tea Island, I could actually taste the fragrance of the brewed jasmine tea. Do you know if most places in YVR use real brewed tea? Do you have any recommendations for BBT places that you enjoy in YVR?

          I agree with your assessment for Corner 23. And I usually don’t crave pork hock either. I was there with my family and Grayelf and they wanted to try the pork hock. I’m glad we tried the pork hock as it was the best dish of our meal. As I’m usually in town for only a short period of time, I’m not sure if Corner 23 will make it into my eating rotation. I’ve got so many favourites that I want to go back to each time I’m in town. I would go back to Corner 23 if I was craving the pork hock.

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