As a kid, I had always enjoyed Hot Pot. However, when we grew up with it, it was always at someone’s house and we only used Chicken Stock as the soup base. Not many Chinese Restaurants would offer Hot Pot or more commonly known as Steam Boat. However, times have changed and there are a few places that now offer it in Wellington. I have tired a few places and here are some of my thoughts about some of the places.
A place that I would not recommend is Peking House. I have not been here for ages and do not even know if they still do Hot Pot, but the main reason I would not recommend it because they don’t use stock in their Hot Pot and only use hot water or hot water with chilli paste in it. Another place I wouldn’t recommend and that is because there are better places with a better dinning experience is Red Hill. There Hot Pot experience is good, it is just too noisey at times due to the crowd who are there for the BYO experience and the cheap Western style Chinese food.
I would recommend two places. The First is the Dumpling Company on The Terrace. They both have an A la Carte option and an All You Can Eat Option. They have an open fridge where you can select what you want to put in your hot pot and they have a variety of soups/stock to cook your food in. I especially like their Coconut Chicken and Sichuan Spicy Broth.
The second place I would recommend is Volcano Restaurant. It still has the BYO element but I do not think it is as busy as Red Hill. It is all you can eat, but you have a time limit of 90 minutes. Also, what is good about this place is you get your individual Hot Pot, so you get to choose your own broth and what you put in it. I went with the Hot Spicy Broth and my mouth went numb due to the Sichuan pepper corns. So Good.
Now if you want to just try the Hot Pot experience and see what it is about. A good place to try is Tiger Restaurant. You get to choose what you want to eat, but you pay by weight. They then cook it for you. I would suggest you go with Mild or No Spice even if you are good with spice. Sichuan Peppers are just a different kind of spice and make your mouth numb.