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Burnaby just got its next great Chinese restaurant

Mui Garden had a soft opening this week
Hainanese Chicken. Photo by Lindsay William-Ross/Vancouver Is Awesome

Have you ever tried Hainanese chicken rice?

It is chicken that is steamed and cooked in chicken stock and served at room temperature with chili and ginger dipping sauces.

It’s such a simple dish, but it’s divine. Whether you order white or dark meat, the chicken is ridiculously juicy. The chili sauce is good, but I’m in love with the ginger dipping sauce. The combination is outrageous.

Why am I bringing this up?

Because there is a new place in Burnaby to find this lovely dish.

Mui Garden has now opened its third Metro Vancouver location, with a soft opening this week at 4727 Kingsway to go along with its Vancouver and Richmond locations.

I spoke with Ben Mui about this family-run company.

“Mui Garden was first opened on Victoria Drive in Vancouver in 1992, when we immigrated here from Hong Kong,” Mui said.

That location has been operated by the same family since - so it's been 29-plus years.

““We also have a Richmond location that is still in operation since 1996 (again, same ownership). We are Hong Kong-style cafe, and anyone who knows Mui Garden, they know we are known for our Malaysian curry as well as our Hainanese Chicken.”

This is how they describe their Malaysia curry: “With over twenty meticulously blended spices and ingredients, and over two decades of perfection, combined with our unique home style cooking, we are proud to present to you a dish that is a one of a kind. Come try our famous curry with various meats or seafood, and vegetables.”

So, what’s it like opening a new restaurant during COVID-19 – a time when many restaurants are closing down.

“The pandemic was a very interesting period for us,” said Mui. “Like many, we really were nervous and fearful at the start of the pandemic, particularly when we had to close our restaurants for a few weeks. We have never experienced anything like this in the last 29 years. However, we are so tremendously blessed by our loyal customers, who have been incredibly supportive, thus, we have been able to survive the pandemic thus far.”