Good Eats

Want Hotpot 捞王 @ Shanghai

After Haidilao, Want Hotpot will become the second hotpot chain to be listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange. So what’s the attraction of this hotpot?

Want Hotpot is a Cantonese-style hotpot, i.e. the soup base is made up of a flavourful soup and not just stock or broth. And if you have not ordered anything from the menu for cooking in the hotpot, the soup itself can be the meal.

As part of their rapid expansion, they have opened a branch at the basement of our office building.

There’s a special drink from Hong Kong that I really enjoyed – 7-Up with salted plum. The glass rim was salted like a tequila shot. The drink was really refreshing.

The hotpot was ceremoniously placed on the induction stove on our table. There’s one type of soup but different ingredients can be added. There’s the classic chicken and pig’s stomach soup, the basic plus seafood (mainly a lobster), the basic plus mushroom, you get it. So we ordered the basic – it’s peppery, sticky with collagen. It reminded me of the pig’s stomach soup that was sold in our family coffeeshop.

While we wait for the soup to boil, we ordered two cooked dishes – platter of mixed braised innards, and a roasted pigeon. Roasted pigeons in mainland China are a waste of time – they are puny and poor eats. At this moment I missed Hong Kong.

When the soup boiled over, we were all given a bowl to taste. That’s when I can examine the soup in detail. There’s a whole chicken in our pot. The soup was milky white, but I don’t think it was from the chicken. The stock base was pork bones and chicken carcass. So after long boiling, the soup turned white.

We ordered simple stuff to add to the soup. As I mentioned, the soup itself was meal on its own. But we got put some greens into it. And also some handmade prawn balls, beef meatballs and bamboo fungus.

It was very satisfying to see the pot boiling with all those ingredients swimming in them. The soup at this time was infused with a mixture of different tastes, so the simple clean taste of the original chicken soup was destroyed.

And of course we got to have more meat and that came in the form of beef short ribs with excellent marbling. And I recommend that you do this last, or the soup will really really be ruined with the fats and protein scum floating all over place.

So it is that good that you would buy their shares? Not really, as there are many who can make better pig stomach and chicken soup. However, they have a winning formula – accessibility and affordability for a posh dinner – and that is what would drive repeat business and share price up.

Want Hotpot 捞王心灵肚鸡汤
Tel : +86 (021)-52181776

Date Visited : Jul 2021

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