For the sake of a long weekend next week, all of us need to, first, survived this long working week. Therefore, in order to give you a bit of comfort, I've decided to share this post with you during this long working week. I first heard about this place through another blogger. After sharing with friends, we've decided that we must come and try it ourselves. It had been quite a hassle trying to get as many to join this dinner. We had to cancel our first appointment due to a typhoon. Then, there weren't enough people to join... finally we agreed with a third date. But pity, there was still one that couldn't join us in the end.
Despite tha hassle of trying to arrange a time good for everyone, it was well worth all the trouble! After you've scrutinized the menu, you'll realise why we did all we can to ensure that we got as many people to join us as possible. It was not a place suitable for a small group of two to three (unless you're affluent, of course).
We were arranged to sit at the open area initially, but a group made an eleventh hour cancellation, and we got to upgrade to this box with no minimum charge required. The rest of the gang that arrived first all left to use the loo. I was left at the table alone, when the waitress came and explained that the tissues and stuff were in the drawer (smart design to make more room on the table!) and that if anyone needed to charge their phones, there were plugs on the other side of the table leg.
Quite a unique feature is this bib. Drape it over your chest, and you wouldn't have to worry about the splishy splashy soup.
Of course, since the theme of this place is 'Imperial Hot Pot', everything had to do with making you feel like an emperor/empress. From the design of the pot itself, to the different kinds of soup...
The English on the website for this pot is simply 'chicken pot', but the Chinese name is a lot fancier: 'Phoenix Returns to the Nest Pot'. Yeah... that doesn't sound very appetizing. Chicken pot will do. Anyhow, there's a special story to this pot. I don't imagine the waitresses here are trained to tell the story in English, so whether or not you plan to dine here, here's the story:
Legend has it that the mother of Empress Consort Wu was given such soup by an imperial chef during pregnancy, claiming that the herbs in the soup would not only guarantee that she would give birth to a boy, but also help the baby in the womb become a well noted person in history. When the baby was born, obvsiouly the Empress Consort turned out to be a girl, the mother disregarded what the chef said. Later on, the Empress Consort Wu did, in fact, become a well-noted 'somebody' in history!
I don't know if that's just bullocks, or whether it's true, but I guess it still makes it fun to hear a story that goes with the food.
黃金府竹 Dried bean curd
鹿野雞（附豬肚）Chicken meat (comes with pig tummies).
以上都是鳳凰回巢鍋附贈的。 These are all within the 'phoenix pot' set.
這是另外加點的（就沒有豬肚）Chicken meat ordered on the side (doesn't come with pig tummy)
There are two stoves in this box. In order to taste as much as we possibly can, we asked for a pot that could fill two different kinds of soups in one. The red one, is of course, spicy. The other has pickled cabbage and pork.
There's all-you-can-eat rice in the sauce area. Personally, I think the soup is savoury enough.
The service was excellent. Initially, the waitress will come and drop the stuff into the soup for you. (Really makes you feel like royalty!)
However tasty the meat is, do remember to take some veggies to help you digest.
老油條 Chinese cruller
手工川丸子 meat balls
手工鮮蝦丸 Shrimp balls
干貝珍珠滑 Scallop mince
Literally, a meal fit for a king!
神仙牛肉 Heavenly beef
Ok, this had been a real sight! Just look at it! How ridiculous is this plate of beef!?
服務非常到位！害我到後來想吃什麼根本都不想自己煮了！ The gal waiting on our table.
鬼扯神仙牛肉不冒煙後似乎也沒那麼鬼扯了。 Once the fog started to wear off, it didn't seem that ridiculous anymore, the beef, I meant.
青菜還是要吃！What did I say about veggies?
Sliced grouper. I was going to go for oysters, but this meal has been something enough... I thought fish would do...
I don't think this was a part of their job. But since we asked her to pour us the beer, she did so gladly! We all enjoyed her service!
汽水是給要開車的人。The soft drink was for those who had to drive.
附帶一提，這豆腐跟鴨血，是無限量供應！The spice soup also came with free refills of tofu and duck blood.
The test tubes were filled with cranberry sorbet. This waitress came and waited on us after the earlier one disappeared.
Now comes the final spectacle of our phoenix soup - the congee!
新的鍋子來了，但我們煮過的精華還是會取一些加進去。New pot, new soup, but some of the essence from our old soup-base was poured into the new soup.
把米以及其他配料到進去～ Rice and other ingredients were, then added into the soup.
While waiting for the congee to cook, this was the time when the waitress would start to tell the story of the pot (as mentioned earlier)
After turning off the stove, then pour the beaten egg into it to finish the congee.
最後，這粥出來就變這樣囉！And.......voila! The congee was the finale of the entire meal!