HomeArticlesAll You Can Eat HOTPOT Buffet Tour of San Francisco!
All You Can Eat HOTPOT Buffet Tour of San Francisco!
September 1, 2019
Hey, guys! Since moving to the San Francisco-Bay Area, I have been exploring the hot pot scene and I realized something. The hot pots in San Francisco are just amazing So much so, that when it came time to do a hot pot video, I couldn’t just choose one place. So then I thought, “Oh well, let’s just do it on all of them.” And to make it interesting, we’re gonna have a little comparison. That’s why for this video, I did my research and picked out four of the most popular, all-you-can-eat hot pot restaurants in San Francisco. And, I’m gonna go eat at all of them this week and take you with me. Now, I’m choosing all-you-can-eat places because I generally feel that’s where you can get the most value for your money. Because typically when you go to a la carte hot pot restaurants a plate of beef, or a plate of lamb will run you about ten, 11, 12 dollars. And for me, I’ll go through three plates of lamb before even sitting down. I feel the same way about Korean barbecues by the way And although I really don’t like to give out points or rates on a numerical scale how good a restaurant is, but this time, we’re gonna try that. So the four restaurants I will be visiting in this video are “Boiling Hot Pot”, “Fiery Hot Pot”, “The Pot”, and “iPot.” I will be rating them on five different things. The sauce bar, the soup base, variety, meat quality, and service. Typically, I don’t really care about service at a Chinese restaurant, but this is a hot pot buffet. That means your waiter or waitress is your direct link to all-you-can-eat meat. And there’s nothing worse than sitting around a hot pot with all your friends and all you have left is some broth. So yeah, service is really important at these places. I’m gonna rank each of these items out of five, just so we can kind of compare all these restaurants. Also keep in mind this is just my opinion and you may completely disagree with me, which is 100% okay because we all have different tastes. I might be going on a day where their service is completely horrible and you might have went when it rocked the house, so, it’s all subjective. What my main purpose for this video is to show you guys all the awesome all-you-can-eat hot pot spots in San Francisco. And I do believe that these are all quality places. Alright, let’s go hot pot it. The first place we’re gonna try is Fiery Hot Pot. And I’m loving that name because all hot pot should be fiery. And for this meal I got Jasmina and Jennifer joining me because you can’t eat hot pot alone, gotta eat with friends. Let’s take a look at the menu. The meat selection is kinda limited. You got a supreme beef, you got a ribeye, got a lamb, pork belly, chicken, who needs that? And fish. Also in the middle there’s some dumplings and blood cake. There’s six different soup bases to choose from. I, of course, got the fiery spicy beef and they recommended the rich pork for something that’s not as spicy. And when they asked me how spicy I want the fiery spicy beef to be, I, of course, said the spiciest it can be. So here it is. The spicy beef and the rich pork. I’m just gonna take a little bit and try this out here. It is really spicy and peppery. Um, I don’t know how flavorful it is. All I taste is spice and peppercorn. I’m gonna have to reserve judgement until I actually dip something in there. Now the reason the menu was sort of limited is because of this. Check this out. I’ve never seen this at an all-you-can-eat hot pot before. This is a buffet bar. And this is all included in the buffet. So what I see is a lot of veggie options here. Let’s skip the broccoli, never touch that. Beautifully arranged greens. And this aisle I really like. Got some tripe, love that. A little clams, mussels, shrimps, spam. And this is really cool, they got ramen sitting up here. I’ve gotta say, all this is pretty awesome. We definitely got a lot of stuff on the first round. I mean basically everything in that bar. And every single meat item except for the chicken because, come on, that’s a waste of stomach space. This is the ribeye. This is definitely the best meat they have in the house here. Let’s see how good it is. Drop it in the fiery broth. Really quick. Don’t let it cook for too long. First bite of a hot pot is always most exciting. This meat is sliced really, really thin. And look at the marbling on this. I feel like the meat quality – obviously I just came back from Kobe and I had some Kobe beef – so my beef scale is all sorts of messed up. But for all-you-can-eat hot pot buffet, this meat is not bad. I think the key is, it’s sliced paper-thin, so it breaks apart in your mouth really well as long as you don’t overcook it. But I do have to say I was right about the soup base. Besides being really peppery and really spicy, it doesn’t have a lot of flavor. Some hot pot places you dip the ingredients into the broth, you take it out, it’s good to go to eat. But here, you gotta use your sauce. For mine, I typically use a mixture of shacha, garlic, peanut or sesame sauce, chili oil, soy sauce, and whatever little greens I can find. Let’s try the supreme beef. I notice right away that the supreme beef is really, really lean so I’m kind of afraid it’s gonna be a little tough. It is really, really lean. If you overcook this even a little bit, this thing is gonna turn into rubber. Luckily, they had this. I didn’t see this up at the buffet. You gotta ask for sesame oil. And of course, every sauce needs sesame oil. Soo, so much better with the sauce. This is something you don’t see a lot at all-you-can-eat hot pots. Beef tendon. Dump this in. The beef tendon is a winner. It’s a little crunchy, a little gelatinous. Mm, delicious! Look how thinly this fish is sliced though. I don’t usually like fish in my hot pot, but because it looks so pretty, I’m gonna have some. Mm! Actually the fish is quite good here.