Sherman's Food Adventures: Lamb Hot Pot

Lamb Hot Pot

The Chinese-style hot pot (yes, I realize there are different types) is often seen as a very simple and basic form of eating.  It is definitely hands-on and interactive, but is also quite generic at the same time.  For the longest time, most of the hot pot restaurants in town have been serving up the Cantonese version which involves mild-tasting broths and a focus on seafood and beef.  However, we are beginning to see more and more Northern and Szechuan-style hot pots that feature spicier broths and a wider selection of ingredients.  The newly relocated Lamb Hot Pot (where Chubby Lamb used to be on Alexandra Road) brings the Northern version to Vancouver.

I've tried the place before and came away satisfied mostly because I love lamb!  Since Bear, Boss Woman and Milhouse also share the same love for lamb, we decided to pay the place a visit after a cold evening of softball.  We ended up ordering the Half and Half Broth with one side being spicy.  Chock full of lamb bones, the broth paid homage to the restaurant's name.  We thought the lamb broth was aromatic, well-seasoned and balanced.  Extra points for them refilling the evaporated broth with more broth rather than hot water.  As for the spicy side, it was definitely impactful and aromatic without being painful.  The best part was the ample lamb spine and bones where the meat was tender and flavourful.  We loved sucking the marrow with the straws!

For the rest of the meal, we chose a few items including both the sliced Beef (appeared to be eye of round) and Supreme Beef (which was more tender and fattier).  Despite being a good portion (it didn't look like it at first, but the amount of meat was substantial), the sliced beef was very lean and ate quite heavy.  It was slightly chewy, even though we barely cooked it through.  On the other hand, the fattier supreme beef was super buttery and tender.  It had a hard time staying in one piece, but it was on point texturally.  Of course we also got an order of Lamb and it was fatty and tender.  We loved that it wasn't super gamy, but still retained the essence of lamb.  Dumplings were not bad where the filling was juicy, but the skin was a tad thick.

Moving away from red meat, we got some seafood in the form of Basa Fish Filets and Black Tiger Shrimp.  Both of these were reasonably-priced at $4.99.  I found the fish to be pretty standard where it was tender and soft even when sitting in the broth for awhile.  Meaty and full of shrimp flavour, the tiger shrimp were large and had a nice snap (we barely cooked these through too).  We also loved the fresh noodles which we cooked al dente.  They were able to soak up some of the great flavour from the broth. In fact, the whole meal was centered around that outstanding broth (and the bones too).  It made everything tasty and satisfying.

The Good:
- Outstanding broth
- Loved those bones!
- Decent service

The Bad:
- A little pricey


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