- It has to be cold outside because otherwise, hot pot is too hot!
- You have to have enough time to spend eating because otherwise, hot pot takes too long to wait for everything to cook and to spend so much time socializing and eating.
After this experience at the Yunnan style hot pot restaurant, Matt and I now have a third essential when it comes to hot pot:
- You have to eat it with at least 4 people. Otherwise, you eat way too much!
So, how is Yunnan hot pot different from other hot pots? It's mostly the same, but here were a few things that were different:
- The free snacks they included with the meal were really good, much better than a lot of other hot pot places, and a really nice variety.
- They included some kind of free alcoholic drink with your meal, the way some restaurants include free tea or hot water with the meal. Matt and I don't like alcohol, so I have no idea if it's good, but it was free, so that could be a plus.
- Instead of the whole table sharing a big hot pot, you each order and get your own individual little hot pot.
- The sesame dip and other dipping sauces that are often included for free at other hot pot places was not free at this place. However, one dip is more than enough for 2 people to share.
Otherwise, the offerings and prices at this hot pot place were quite comparable to other hot pot restaurants we've been to.
- Jane fungus soup
- Bone stock
- Flowers sesame catsup stock
- Private spice sauce
- Beancurd knot
- Sweet potato
- Perfume forgotten lamb
- Ballfrog (Bullfrog...Chinese menus always have the hardest time spelling this, haha)
It didn't seem like that much when we ordered it, but it was a lot after we actually ate it all.
One last note - there were two sets of prices for each item in the menu. One is the discount price and one is the regular price. They told us that we qualified for the discounted price, but I'm really not sure why. We asked them if it was because of the time of day or the day of the week (we went for dinner on a Sunday), but they said the discounted price is for all the time. So, I'm not really sure what's up with the two sets of prices. In all, our meal listed above was about 200 RMB (30 USD), and like I said, we ordered more than enough for 2 people.
Our overall verdict: we would definitely go back to this place (short wait, good service, great free snacks), but we can't go by ourselves again, or we'll stuff ourselves beyond capacity.