Authentic Chongqing Hotpot - Hong Kong
Hello fellow foodies! Sorry for being away for almost four months. I was juggling between work, school and travel but now that school is over I'm going to make a huge effort to regularly blog.
Hong Kong has countless hotpot options. Whether it is in winter or summer, hotpot is popular all year round to locals in Hong Kong and in this respect I'm no different, I love hotpot!
Having had Japanese hotpot (Shabu Shabu), Hong Kong style hotpot, Chongqing style hotpot and Korean style hotpot my favourite would be Chongqing style hotpot. I recently stumbled across a hotpot place in which I think it's the best Chongqing style hotpot in Hong Kong. The details of this awesome hotpot place are as follows:
G/f, 16 Man Ying Street, Jordan, Hong Kong
+852 6644 1666
This restaurant doesn't have an English name so for now I'm just going to call the restaurant by the pinyin of the first 3 Chinese words of the name, Er Jia Jie.
Firstly Er Jia Jie's restaurant is quite neat, clean and tidy. Some hotpot places in Hong Kong are dirty and loud, this wasn't the case for Er Jia Jie.
Er Jia Jie in my opinion is the best Chongqing style hotpot in Hong Kong due to it's fresh ingredients, good service and the flavour of the broth. Chongqing (a city in China) hotpot is famous for it's spicy numbing hotpot broth that is filled with chilli and corn peppers. Many hotpot places in Hong Kong also offer this spicy numbing soup base but the flavour isn't quite the same as the ones served in Chongqing, this could be due to the fact that other hotpot restaurants are are most likely using packet soup or the fact that they don't have chilli and corn peppers floating around in the broth.
At Er Jia Jie you can choose to have hotpot with one type of broth or two types of broth. Of all the times we've been to Er Jia Jie we have chosen to have two soup bases, the authentic spicy soup base and the clear soup base (not spicy) which has a few medicinal ingredients that's put in the middle of the pot.
We like to have our veggies in the non spicy broth and put the meat in the spicy broth. You can also choose how spicy you want your broth, you can choose between small spicy, medium spicy or large spicy. On our first visit we tried medium spicy and thought it was way too spicy so on our second visit we chose small spicy and thought that was not spicy at all. Every time now we visit Er Jia Jie we ask for small spicy and additional spicy on top of the small spicy so the level of spiciness is somewhere between small and medium.
There menu is extensive and you'll see that they aren't exactly the cheapest hotpot out there but hey you pay for what you get! The waiters will tell you their special seafoods of the day when you get seated and they are very helpful if you don't know what items to pick. I would however recommend udon and the hand cut beef (#211 on the menu) on the menu, this beef only requires very little time in the pot and virtually melts in your mouth.
After you've ordered from the menu, start mixing your dipping sauces while you wait for your hotpot and ingredients to come! The sauces come in a little cute wooden container with red stickers (giving the ancient Chinese vibes) stating what they are. I get a bit crazy with my sauces, most times I put almost everything you see in the picture apart from coriander and sesame oil, they key for me is vinegar (I love the sour flavour in my sauce).
The food are all nicely presented to you and you can tell the ingredients here are of higher quality than hotpot buffets you go to.
I've been to Er Jia Jie 4-5 times now and the quality of the food has remained consistent. Each time I crave authentic Chongqing hotpot, I crave Er Jia Jie.
The bill is approximately HKD600-700 between two people each time without ordering expensive seafood . If you decide to visit on the weekend then be sure to make a booking as there can be queues and also be prepared that your clothes will smell like Chongqing hotpot!
*Sorry for the quality of the photos in this po.t, it's quite difficult to take photos without the steam of the hotpot being in it,