The cool breezy fall weather can only mean one thing – it’s hot pot season! What better way to warm your bodies, stuff yourself with delish food and gather the kiddos ’round to cook up a storm?!
Hot pot makes for a fun dinner out with the family – and it’s perfect for little ones since it’s a meal that’s bound to get a little messy and steamy as you take your pick from platters of raw food, cook them in a variety of broth bases and scoop out the results to dunk generously into your choice of DIY dips … frankly, the messier, the better! We’ve rounded up our top 5 hot pot restaurants in Hong Kong – so get ready to become the chef for the night!
San Xi Lou
A favorite among Mid-Level dwellers, San Xi Lou is a popular place for Sichuan food and hot pot. Their signature soup base is the Sichuan Mala Broth (Sichuan spicy hot pot), which is a must-try for those who love the numbing effect of Sichuan cuisine! I couldn’t feel my mouth after a few bites of food and the occasional crunch into peppercorns, so be sure to adjust the broth only to the level you can handle (small, medium or a large amount of spice). I was particularly excited to order the deep fried fish skin, which was well seasoned and flawlessly crispy when it arrived to our table. Aside from hot pot, the Sichuan food here is incredibly authentic and you should definitely try the Spicy Saliva Chicken, a fiery dish of chicken marinated in chili and sesame oil or the Water Cooked Fish, a wonderfully spicy Sichuan style stewed fish.
San Xi Lou, 7/F, Coda Plaza, 51 Garden Road, Mid-Levels, Hong Kong, 2838 8811
Megan’s Kitchen is a standout for those who love to experiment and test out fusion hot pot broths –so it’s probably a best bet when the wee ones aren’t joining. Regulars swear by the Tomato and Crab Soup in Souffle Finish, a thick and frothy broth with smatterings of egg white. Other innovative broths include the Malaysian Satay Soup and the Dried Scallop and Chinese Ham. Feeling a bit more indulgent? Order up a round of black truffle wagyu beef dumplings to share! If you’re coming with a big group of people, you can also reserve one of their six VIP rooms for a little more privacy.
Megan’s Kitchen, 5/F, Lucky Centre, 165-171 Wan Chai Road, Wan Chai, Hong Kong, 2866 8305
Little Sheep Mongolian Hot Pot
For a hot pot place that has EVERYTHING, head on over to Little Sheep! One of the largest hot pot chains around town (…and the world – there are even branches in the States!), Little Sheep is a Mongolian franchise with six hot pot spots in Hong Kong. The casual atmosphere, round tables and extremely reasonable prices make it great for large gatherings with friends or family. The list for hot pot food and broth here is incredibly extensive – and if you simply can’t make up your mind on the broth, the beauty of Little Sheep lies in its half-half option of two broths in one pot! Such is its popularity, you can now even buy their signature soup bases from the supermarket to enjoy at home too.
Little Sheep, 2/F, Causeway Bay Plaza 2, 463-483 Lockhart Road, Causeway Bay, 2893 8318; see all locations in Hong Kong here
The Soup Bowl
If you’re afraid of crowds and all the hustle and bustle of rowdy hot pot spots, then The Soup Bowl in up-and-coming Western District is the perfect place to be. The location is a little obscure, but it’s worth the trip for a roomier and more pleasant hot pot meal. The highlight here is its wide selection of beef – other than the usual fatty beef (a must-order item for hot pot, where the fat gives your broth even more flavour), the Soup Bowl goes further and offers alternatives like beef underarm meat (肥牛腋) and the soft bone near the ribcage (牛胸尖), both of which were surprisingly tender and less fatty!
The Soup Bowl, G/F, Sik On House, 54-66 Hill Road, Western District, Hong Kong, 2291 6368
What’s special about the hot pot at Katte Shabushabu is that you get your own individual hot pot – perfect for those who don’t want to share a pot with masses of people, compromise on picking soup bases, and especially great if you have any veggies in your midst. The restaurant feels cosy, with a bar top table and dark woody decor giving a comfortable vibe. The lunch set is especially good-for-value – for about $150, you’ll get an appetizer of edamame, a generous portion of US beef, veggies, a choice of rice or Inaniwa udon, and a daily dessert. The signature Clear Red Snapper broth is a total crowd pleaser and if you’re still hungry for more after your meal, order some yakitori to share with friends!
Katte Shabushabu, G/F, 5 Caroline Hill Road, Causeway Bay, 2577 2628; G/F, 134 Tung Lo Wan Road, Tai Hang, 2806 3678