Sherman's Food Adventures: To Hot Hot Pot

To Hot Hot Pot

Ominously, the forecast called for rain - 100% chance of rain.  Well, that is nothing new for Vancouver and in fact, a daily occurrence from October to March.  But we were scheduled to visit the Richmond Night Market...  Yes, that complicates things, especially when one wants to eat while standing and let's not even get into taking pictures.  The horror!  Well Nora arrived early she was there to hear that they had actually closed the market for the evening!  So the backup plan was to visit To Hot Hot Pot instead.  Sounded like a perfect alternative for a rainy night.

At one point they offered AYCE hot pot, but now it is all a la carte and on the pricier side.  This would qualify as higher-end hot pot considering the decor, quality of food and number of VIP rooms.  Before we got down to business, we helped ourselves to the Sauce Bar.  There was a larger one in the main dining room, but at the back, this is all we got.  They had the basics, but nothing more.  As for our soup base(s), we got a split Hot Pot with Spicy and Mushroom.  There was nothing particularly amiss with the 2 soup bases but they weren't truly memorable either.  I guess I'm still spoiled by the rich and impactful broth from Lamb Hot Pot and Liuyishou.  Otherwise, they did the job and didn't take away from the experience.  Some of the dishes surrounding the hot pot included bean curd skin, lotus root, fresh noodles, corn, beef tongue, marinated cucumbers and enoki.

Onto some of the meats, we got a bunch of them that we easily figured out what they were (but one was a bit confusing which I will touch upon later).  First off, the Sliced Lamb was high quality and cooked up real well.  Even though it wasn't super fatty, it was still tender and just the right thickness.  I lobbied for Ox Tongue and we ended up getting a plate.  However, it was cooked too much where it broke apart once placed in the boiling broth.  Alright, onto the confusing part of the meats...  To the right, you will see a picture of what looks like Pork.  I can see how it might look like beef, but when we cooked it up, it was definitely pork.  However, the servers kept insisting it was beef.  So we never did get our 2 orders of beef, instead we got 2 orders of pork.  Bizarre...

Whatever really since our attention was focused on the next 2 items - Spot Prawns and a whole Geoduck.  Okay, this is going to sound rather disturbing and cruel, but the prawns were still alive.  They were still wriggling despite being jabbed up the ass with a bamboo skewer.  Suffice to say, these were super fresh, sweet and delicate.  Now if you look at the picture of the sliced whole geoduck, just be aware that it cost $178.00!  Was it good?  Hell ya it was and we had plenty of it to eat.  This was super fresh and sweet with a crunch (you only need to cook it for a like a few seconds).  Of course, with these 2 premium items, our hot pot experience was elevated to another level.  However, if we just look at the other ingredients, broth, service and pricing into account, To Hot Pot isn't any better than other spots in the area.  With that being said, it isn't a bad choice either.

*All food was complimentary*

The Good:
- Big and spacious
- Fairly good service
- Fresh ingredients

The Bad:
- Pricey
- Soup base was average


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