Stepping inside Huat Pot, we were led towards our table that the far corner of the restaurant which was quite cramped and definitely could not comfortably sit 5 people. Oh dear! Sadly, the entire restaurant was filled to the brim so we had to make do with a little adjustments here and there. As soon as we were all seated, Paul, Pan and I were tasked by our parents to take care of getting the food. The set-up reminds me of our favorite hotpot restaurant in Taiwan where all the meats and veggies were neatly stored in a huge chiller and there were a lot of drink options and the best part of all -- free ice cream!
For the first timers, here's the drill at Huat Pot:
First -- Choose your Soup!
You can get a combination of two flavors. Will it be the Huat Pot Special (clear soup)? Sate? Oden (Vegetarian)? Mala (Spicy)? We went for the Huat Pot Special and the Sate that evening.
Choose from a variety of sodas from the vendo to refillable San Miguel Beer which was available till 10PM only. They also have coffee and tea too.
Third -- Make your sauce.
This is the only part where I hope they'd provide the same sauce mix platter per table. It can be quite a hassle to stand up should you want more garlic or sate while enjoying your meal. Also this station can be quite crowded as it takes a little bit more time to create ones sauce.
Fourth -- Pick your Ingredients.
As soon as they pour in the soup stock, wait for it to boil before you drop in the flavorful ingredients (see above) then slowly drop in the balls and more veggies. Note that some ingredients cooks faster than the other so keep a close watch at your pot all the time.
Sixth -- It's chow time!
After cooking your hot pot ingredients, it's time to enjoy it! I usually like dipping every single item into my customized sauce which consists of soy sauce, sate, spring onions, chopped garlic and peanut sauce. No carbs for me but for those who just can't live without rice, there's a rice cooker for you to help yourselves too.
Save for the really cramped table, we enjoyed our dinner at Huat Pot. Given that they just opened, we were impressed that the restaurant was already filled with happy and hungry diners.
Eat all you can Hot Pot rate: Php. 688++
*Huat Ah! means to prosper in Hokkien and is widely used during the CNY in Taiwan and Singapore
Check out Huat Pot at the 2nd Floor Metropoint Center, P. Guevarra cor Wilson Street, San Juan. (They share the same building as Nathaniel's and Rustan's Supermarket). Parking is available at the Basement. Call them at 650-3091 / 0915-4805500.