Welcoming the Chinese New Year

While Western celebrations tend to involve lots of noise and partying, the Chinese New Year traditionally focuses on family and food. Ingredients have symbolic meanings, and it’s believed to be very important to eat things that will bring good fortune and harmony in the coming year. Luckily, a few of Victoria’s restaurants in and around Chinatown will be providing special menus to mark the occasion.

Rack of lamb symbolizes peace and harmony

With food that will bring good fortune and harmony

While Western celebrations tend to involve lots of noise and partying, the Chinese New Year traditionally focuses on family and food. Ingredients have symbolic meanings, and it’s believed to be very important to eat things that will bring good fortune and harmony in the coming year. Luckily, a few of Victoria’s restaurants in and around Chinatown will be providing special menus to mark the occasion.

The Pacific Restaurant at the Grand Pacific Hotel is offering a three-course feast between Feb. 3 and 10 that promises to be both delicious and auspicious. Using ingredients such as pomegranates (to bring good fortune and to symbolize a large family), halibut (fish should never be eaten in its entirety, as leaving a bit leftover represents having a surplus of money throughout the coming year), and rack of lamb (to symbolize peace and harmony), executive chef Rick Choy has created a menu that will appeal to the contemporary and traditional alike. For instance, the first course features a pan seared Qualicum Bay scallop served with preserved kumquat, pomegranate syrup, and Lung Ching (green tea) foam, while both the halibut and lamb main course options are served with a sticky rice pavé and seasonal vegetables.

To accompany the evening’s food, tea master Daniela Cubelic of Silk Road has paired rare and exquisite teas to each dish. The first course features Imperial Tea Mandarin, both for its delicate citrus flavour and association with positive male yang energy and prosperity. Similarly, the second course tea choices of Frozen Mountain Peak (goji berries are prominent in this elixir for health, vitality, and immortality) or Waterfall (a semi-green oolong tea ‘overflowing’ with luck, health, and wealth) offer promises of abundance.

The number eight is also symbolic of good luck. In keeping with that theme, the meal is being offered for $38.88 per person, tea pairings are $8.88, and The Pacific’s sommeliers have also made wine pairings available for $28.88. Dinner service is available from 5 pm to 10 pm, and reservations can be made by calling the restaurant at 250-380-4458.

Don Mee Seafood Restaurant, located in the heart of Chinatown, will be also be offering an authentic Chinese menu to welcome the New Year. Available from Jan. 21 until Feb. 20, the eight-course meal will include a number of delicacies and symbolic dishes such as chicken (to ensure a good marriage and family unity) and fish (to help your wishes come true). Price is $19.99 per person, and reservations can be made at 250-383-1032.

Other events to check out:

The annual Lion Dance performance will take place on Sunday, Feb. 6, and will begin beneath the Chinatown Gates at noon. Practiced for thousands of years, the Lion Dance is believed to chase away negative energies, scare off evil spirits, and welcome good fortune. The dance will be performed by the Wong Sheung Kung Fu Club and is sponsored by the Victoria Chinese Consolidated Benevolent Association.

Silk Road is hosting their annual Chinese New Year Tea Party on Feb. 6. Rare teas and fortune cookies will be served at 2 pm and 3 pm, and the whole family is welcome to come over to 1624 Government Street after the Lion Dance for this fun event.

Just Posted

Canada’s country music sweetheart brings The Gumboot Kids to town

Jessie Farrell to perform songs from her hit CBC TV series at McTavish Academy of Arts

VIFF wrap-up: Finely crafted films part of festival finale

Monday reviewer Kyle Wells puts a cap on his 2018 Vancouver International Film Festival experience

FILM REVIEWS: Race relations, refugees and racy romances featured at VIFF

Monday reviewer Kyle Wells presents round 2 from the Vancouver International Film Fest

An eye for art: The new and the notable at fall’s premier arts event

Sidney Fine Art Show shares wealth of Island talent Oct. 11 to 13

Astrocolor bringing unique funk-synth sound to the Capital Ballroom

Victoria band known for their festival shows making a rare appearance on their home turf

VIDEO: Ballet Kelowna brings steamy story, A Streetcar Named Desire, to Island

Okanagan ballet company brings a classic tale to the Cowichan Valley

Shark-attack metal band coming to Victoria tonight

Shark Infested Daughters, a Calgary metalcore group, play the Upstairs Cabaret tonight, Oct. 13

STAGE AND SONG: Spotlight on Victoria arts groups

Learn about some of the city’s favourite theatre and musical entertainment options

Island lensman Jim Decker lands three top photography awards

During exciting photo trip to Yap in Micronesia, Cobble Hill man earns trio of firsts

Celebrate Oktoberfest Stein and Dine at the Victoria Public Market

Food, suds and German-style fun on tap at Oct. 20 event

Most Read