What: Thick hand-pulled northern Chinese noodles and doughy pork dumplings, pan-fried to achieve a crisp exterior, are among the cheapest, most delicious pleasures to be found in this Asian-food town.

Where: At Sha-Lin Noodle House (604-873-1618; 548 W. Broadway, map), a no-frills, cash-only locals’ favorite, you can watch your MSG-free noodles get stretched through the glassed-in kitchen.

When: Open for lunch, Wed-Mon, 11:30am-3pm; daily for dinner, 5:30pm-9:30pm

Order: The massive, thick pan-fried pork dumplings (pictured; 12 pieces for CAD$8.95; dinner and weekends only) are absolutely unmissable. As for noodles, we loved the fried cutting noodles with curry lamb ($9.95) and the pork and vegetable dragging noodles in soup, for which you’re given scissors to cut the long, thin strands ($6.95). The cold dish of beef and tripe with spicy sauce ($8.95) also comes highly recommended.