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Source: Manphong Supermarket – Ottawa

Manphong 1

775 Somerset St W, Ottawa – 613-230-9934

Whenever I get to make an excursion to Ottawa’s Chinatown, I always make a point of visiting the Kowloon Market and Wa Kiu Foods to purchase food supplies for home. Depending on how much I have purchased at these two aforementioned places, I also usually stop in to Manphong as well. Very probably, this post will not be particularly interesting to my non-Ottawa based readers, but for those of you who live in the capital, or will be visiting sometime, this place is really worth a look…

Manphong 2

What I really like about this place is the higgledy-piggledy confusion of the place, which makes browsing rather like going on a treasure hunt. The food selection here is not nearly as extensive as the much larger Kowloon Market, and possibly not Wa Kiu Foods either, but it is possible to come across interesting items not available elsewhere.

In addition to dry-goods, Manphong also has a small, but pretty decently stocked, fresh vegetable section with good prices. Kowloon market will typically carry all the things that you are likely to find here but occasionally you can find something unusual and it is nice to have some choice between the two in terms of quality and freshness as well. The humongous woks you see hanging in the back of the store have long been beckoning to me and one of these days I am going to ensure there is enough space in my luggage to bring one of them home. Of additional note, the cooler you see being opened by the gentleman at the right of the picture is usually stocked with lots of tropical juices and interesting beverages and it is here, in fact, that I found the Honey White Gourd Drink I posted about back in March.

Manphong 3

Aside from the aforementioned woks, Manphong is quite possible one of the best places for buying Asian cooking equipment and flatware in the city. Fairway Trading down in Byward Market carries a very nice selection of plates and other serving ware, but the prices there are also noticeably more expensive, in my experience. There are all sorts of cheap and useful, not to mention interesting items here at the back of Manphong, and indeed, there is a fair bit more not captured in the above picture.

Anyway, if you happen to find yourself in Ottawa’s Chinatown sometime, be sure to check this place out…


7 Comments Post a comment
  1. You have continued to impress me as a very loyal fan of Chinese food and Chinese market. Thank you!

    May 25, 2013
    • Now if only I could do fresh vegetable and fish shopping in some of these stores everyday!

      May 25, 2013
  2. I most certainly will

    May 25, 2013
    • I have spent many happy morings on that stretch of Somerset Street West 🙂

      May 25, 2013
  3. I enjoy reviews like this. I’m an Ottawa resident who also works in the arctic, and I am VERY impressed that you do all the cooking you do in a remote area, where you can’t just scoot over to Manphong or Kowloon for that ingredient that I would inevitably be missing… Here in Grise Fiord, where I am currently, I can’t even reliably get a can of peas.

    Have you been to the T&T in Ottawa, out on Hunt Club? I only went once as it’s a bit of a trek – it was overwhelming, but I need to go back there and check it out again sometime when I have time to look around more.

    May 26, 2013
    • I Googled T&T … I’ll have to check it out next time I am south. I have been to Grise many times and I used to live in Pond Inlet … the food situation is *much* better here in Iqaluit 🙂

      May 26, 2013
  4. whitsendmom #

    This is my first time here. I love your description of a Chinese Market as “more of a treasure hunt.” Ours has several tanks of fresh fish (including eels and turtles and frogs), so an outing to our local Chinese Market is more of a field trip for my four kiddos. Plus they love the “demi” china that they buy for their doll plates and cups. I can’t wait to look around your blog. Thanks for stopping by mine (

    May 26, 2013

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