On cold wintery nights, preferably with strong chilly winds, nothing supersedes the hearty feeling of eating HOT POT for dinner ! The newly renovated Shangcheng Hotpot King at Sussex St is quite popular among the Chinese as many have recommended this place to me.
I hadn't been here prior to the renovation but upon being handed an IPad to swipe through the menu and order, I couldn't help but feel a giddy of excitement. I understand that IPad-clad restaurants are no longer a big deal today, but c'mon, ordering via an IPad by myself...that was pure fun!
The menu was so extensive: filled with colourful pictures of all the options which ultimately just caused a big problem. I had wanted EVERYTHING. It wasn't until I had checked the final price list before deciding it was probably wise to untick some of the boxes.
Basically, the first thing you decide on is your soup base! We decided on the popular half-half option which allows you to have both a Chicken Soup Base and a Spicy Soup Base ($15). Note of warning: if you cannot handle really spicy, be really careful in your choice of how hot you want the broth to be. We chose mild and that was enough to get us grabbing the jug of water every now and then :P
Next, you decide on the ingredients you want to dip into your Hotpot! Both M & I love meat and so first things first, we ticked the Wagyu Slice ($16). Fish Tofu ($5) are also a must-order for me at hotpot: the flavoursome cubes are just too delicious to pass. Dumplings ($6) were also ordered.
If you are going to have Hotpot, then you simply must order the Egg Dumplings ($6)! Chinese Vegetables ($3) are also great veggie additions to the lot.
We love meat so much that we also ordered another type of Beef Slices ($8) which was just as delicious as the Wagyu. We also got some Fresh Tofu ($4), which was quite nice too when you dip it in the sauce.
Another thing that makes up the excitement of hotpot is ordering all these different seafood balls. To the right are the Crab Meat Balls ($5) which wasn't too bad but I think shrimp may have been a better choice. The Fish Egg Balls ($6) on the other hand were amazing! Be careful when you bite into them though, as hot steaming fish egg roe will burst and spew out generously.
Hotpot would simply be bland and boring without good sauce choices! The popular options are Peanut Butter and Hoisin (Seafood) as they are full of flavour and will make all your ingredients delicious once cooked. Sauces at Shancheng are generally $2 each!
Overall, Shangchen is a great spot for Hotpot as there is a wide array of choices in terms of ingredients and sauces. However, I must say, for a party of 2, having hotpot turned out to be quite expensive. It will be a much more fun and delicious experience if you go with a group of friends as you can order more dishes and try all of them without having to break your wallet :)
Shancheng Hotpot King
Chinatown Shop 8a
363 Sussex Street
Sydney NSW 2000
Labels: Asian, Chinese, Hotpot