The First Dessert is a newly opened authentic Cantonese dessert place in Vancouver. The store has approximately 30 seats. It’s a medium-sized operation. We came here on their second week of opening. Everything still tastes as intended. Nothing has changed yet. We had a good experience here. They are located on Victoria, close to 43rd Avenue.
We arrived at 5pm, when they were just about to open. I saw no one in the store and was a bit hesitant, unsure if this place is good. I mumbled to myself “Are they open or closed?” as the staff came outside to change the “CLOSED” sign to “OPEN”. She told me they’re open, and held the door until both of us fully entered. Right then, I knew I entered a restaurant who wants to provide good service.
Good Customer Service Made My Dessert Tastes Even Sweeter
The staff is friendly and energetic. She always has a smile on her and made an effort to listen to what I was saying. I knew I wanted to write a review on The First Dessert, so I have been asking her questions about their store. Every time I asked something, she would ask me if there is anything wrong with it before answering. During our stay, she came to fill our tea twice, even when my tea was barely touched.
The Theme Was Set To 1990s
The First Dessert uses lots of wood in their decor. They even use older Chinese style furniture in their store. This kind of store design is widely seen in Hong Kong before 1990s. Even up to today, when restaurants want to showcase their “Good Old Taste”, they would use this kind of decor. The First Dessert took this a step further by playing music from the 1990s such as Jacky Cheung’s Kiss Goodbye
Fresh Dessert Made Every Day Right Before Opening
When we ordered the cold “Green Bean Paste”, the staff revealed to us they are unable to serve cold version. To give patrons the freshest dessert, they started cooking at 3pm. The simmering takes 2 hours to get it ready for 5pm opening. When we arrived, the cooking was just finished not long ago. The dessert hasn’t been put into the fridge long enough to cool yet. The First Dessert also didn’t want to put ice in there to dilute the taste or reduce the portion served.
The “Green Bean Paste” should really be called “seaweed mung bean soup” from direct Chinese translation. The seaweed goes surprisingly well with mung bean. The taste really complements each other. It adds complexity to the taste of mung bean. Giving this dish complex, yet enjoyable experience.
Taro Ball & Sago + Red Bean Is Superb
This is Taro Ball & Sago with Red Bean in coconut milk. It doesn’t look like much when it’s first served.
I put the spoon in and revealed lots of stuff hidden at the bottom of the bowl. What surprised me was the oversized tapioca. I have never seen tapioca at this size. Later I found out it’s called “Sago”. I put one in my mouth and bite into it. They are not soft like the tapioca you get from the traditional Cantonese dessert place, where I normally just drink it without biting. Nor are they chewy like the pearls in bubble tea. Sago is somewhat in the middle. When you bit into it, it separates, but not entirely. I could feel the elasticity in the still-connected portion. It’s very interesting to eat.
The taro balls come in 3 colors. I took my time to taste it and they are Taro, Yam, and Matcha. The tasting took a while because they are very subtle. Some people may even just eat it without knowing it’s flavored. They are chewy like they’re supposed to. The different flavors add an interesting experience in this bowl of dessert.
I took this picture to showcase the Sago. From this picture, you can also see that they use real blended coconut milk. If you look closely, you can see condensation start forming. The taste of coconut milk was perfect. It’s quite refreshing to eat during a summer night. I did not feel thirsty or the urge to drink lots of water after having this.
604 Food Critic Assessment
The first dessert cost about $6 per person. Their desserts are very well made. What shocked me was the replacement of small tapioca with sago, substituting a usual ingredient with a better one. The taste is very well combined and balanced. Everything is cooked perfectly, and fresh. The bowls are smaller than some Cantonese dessert places in town. However, it is cheaper, and I don’t go to dessert places to fill myself up. We would definitely recommend The First Dessert.