The type of food we had was huo guo, which translated to fire pot. Most people call it hot pot. There are different kinds. I think this was Cantonese style where it’s more upscale than the more traditional. It’s essentially a large pot filled with a flavored oil. The staff brings out different types of food for you to cook. So it is very interactive. You eat anything from seafood to vegetables to meats to tofu.
When the food is brought out to you, sometimes it’s laid out, and other times it comes piled on top in a bowl. The presentation on the layouts of this place was nicely done. The mushrooms, bok choy, shrimp balls, and other identifiables were suitable for pictures, but almost as soon as they hit the tabletop, into the cauldron of boiling opil it went.
The taste… well, since you cook it yourself, it depends partly on you. The other part is the quality of ingredients. I would like to believe that at a place like this, they were top notch. Our host owned restaurants and is like a chef, and if he picks this place, methinks it’s good food. Also, he did most of the cooking. Some vegetables had to cook for a long time, and some of the meat were in the oil no more than 15 seconds. Very enjoyable dinner and experience.
In addition to the hot pot, they knew I was craving sushi early on in the day, so they ordered a sashimi plate. I never seen it prepared this way, but after smelling and tasting it, I was an immediate fan. The presentation was quite exquisite with the entire fish filleted. Of course we couldn’t let the rest of the fish go to waste once the middle part was picked at and eaten so into to pot it went, and the fish was delicious cooked as it was raw.
This was probably the most expensive meal I had in my visit at around $130 for the three of us. As you can imagine, that is very high in China.
I’d go back.