I have mentioned that I love Sichuan and I had heard that Hai Di Lao is a popular chain for Hot Pot in China that I had to go. A few days before I went to Yi Hot Pot in Holborn and wanted to compare it to Hai Di Lao, as I really enjoyed the former.
If you’re a spicy food lover, get the Classic Spicy Soup Base as it’s not to be missed. I wouldn’t be a connoisseur if I didn’t have the Sichuan spicy hot pot. It’s filled with Sichuan pepper and you can smell it even from upstairs.
It’s basically Sichuan which if you’ve never tried, the spicy can go straight to your tongue and can make it completely numb. Then get another base to combat in case it’s too spicy for you, I recommend the Mushroom Soup Base. There’s a selection of sides that you can have such as thin slices of beef or lamb, fishballs, crown daisy and tofu. I was even warned that some were spicy but they are subpar in my opinion.
If you’re not sure what to expect or where to go, don’t worry because the staff are there to explain everything you need to know! This would include allergies and extra ingredients. They also offer a hairband for long hair and a wiper for your glasses.
One thing I’ll never get over is that before and after eating, you have the option of playing board games and if you have a lot of time, you can get your nails done.
And the price of eating from a spicy hotpot chain? £25 for 5 people without drinks. I’d recommend that you go with more than 4-5 people to pay a decent price. Anything less than 3 people for hot pot and it’ll be a bit pricey in my opinion.
After a while of eating, my tongue was even affected by the numbness of spice. So I cannot say it’s weak – not at all. Be very careful and make sure to have your favourite ways to handle a spice like Sichuan.