Share the passion by Lee F. Man

Lee F. Man
Food Writer & Judge, Critic’s Choice

I feel very lucky. 

Growing up in a Chinese household in Vancouver, I saw first hand how fantastic local ingredients married with Asian techniques produced a superlative local cuisine.  Friends and family gathered at the table to share stir fried fresh Dungeness crab, local cod steamed to a luscious finish with ginger and scallions, and home made soy sauce chicken using the best of BC poultry.  Summer trips were filled with gathering ocean side limpets, oysters, and geoduck clams that found their way into pots of congee set over a campfire. 

From an early age, we were taught to recognize freshness and
seasonality and to buy the best ingredients possible and treat them
with respect. 

Later on, I was lucky enough to work and live abroad; San Francisco,
Hong Kong, and Shanghai – cities with a major influence on how Chinese
food is perceived in the world.  I travelled throughout Asia, and was
insatiably curious about the local food.

What I also discovered should not have surprised me, that outside of
greater China, Vancouver’s Chinese cuisine was probably the best in the
world.  Demanding and informed diners, skilled and passionate
restaurateurs, and engaged local media; all combine to keep Vancouver
standards exceedingly high. 

So now my passion is to share this knowledge with the greater dining
public, including those beyond the Chinese community.  I have written
extensively for Vancouver Magazine, Time Out travel guides, Vancouver
Best Places, and Wine Access Magazine. That on our doorstep is some of
the finest and most authentic Chinese food in the world; that local
products, especially seafood, are being cooked in new and delicious
ways; that this incredible world of dining is readily accessible and
amazingly affordable.
The Chinese Restaurant Awards, which will provide guidance on specific
dishes and help people explore the local dining scene, is an exciting
addition to our dining landscape.  The Chinese Restaurant Awards team
shares my passion to recognize the best we have in Chinese food, and
sharing it with a wide audience.

Now we can all feel lucky.