Located in a mall near Dhoby Ghaut MRT Station, the newly opened Hai Xian Lao Hotpot Specialty Restaurant is easily accessible by public transport and offers central proximity to many. With operating hours stretching from 11:30am to 5:00am and offering a special buffet styled dinner from 5:00pm to 10:00pm, the versatility and my hectic working working schedule meant that this could easily be my next favourite hangout. Not to mention, Hai Xian Lao also serves quality food at affordable prices (Adult: $34.80++ per pax; Child: $15.80++ per pax).
Like other hotpot restaurants, it allows you to customise your hotpot by combining any two soup bases (Yuan Yang Guo) among several options, the Healthy Collagen, Tom Yum Soup Base, Sichuan Spicy Soup Base, Tomato Soup Base, Laksa Soup Base, and Chicken Soup Base. So at least we would not have to fret over making choices or getting bored just with one. We went for a combination of the collagen and laksa soup bases. I have always believe in wellness from within, and so it comes as a natural. Also, the Collagen base, being a signature of the restaurant, it was indeed rich and flavourful, like a thickened chicken soup. Not to mention the beauty benefits.
To top it off, quite a few types of sauce are offered at one corner to cater to the guests’ preference. Afterall, Hot Pot is about customisation and I appreciate that.
While waiting for the collagen to melt into a viscous broth, we tuck into their crispy pork and prawn-paste chicken wings from “Chef’s Specials and Finger Food Delight”. They turned out to be a highlight of the meal. It was so satisfyingly fragrant and crispyly fried without being cloying oily. If only beer was around.
Meanwhile the Laksa base exudes a potent punch of spice from the curry and laksa leaves in a fiery coconut-curry mix. So you are a fan of creamy coconut and spice, this is it!
The manager also made sure we tried their Sesame Sauce Noodles and Spicy Sichuan Noodles, both of which are very authentic, and the native Chinese in me approved. The ratio of sesame and chili mix is to my liking and people who might not be able to handle the spice from the fiery chili pepper like me will definitely enjoy it.
The quality of ingredients and quantity are always my utmost concern at a buffet hotpot restaurant. With the price, I was a little dubious initial. Little did I expect the lamb shoulder, sliced beef, and pork belly were relatively superior and even good on its own. The quality of the meat was commendable. After dipping into the hot collagen soup for a few seconds, the meat slices were cooked just right and became tender without losing its firmness.
The seafood paste pre-filled into a cone shaped plastic bag like what you would do with fresh cream is another item that you cannot miss. Squeezed into uniformed sizes of noodle strands into the soup for cooking, the seafood noodles were chewy and heavily accented with the freshness of crustaceans.
Overall, it was a pleasant and fulfilling hot pot meal. The drawing points, besides the high quality ingredients is the city location and the Long opening, suffice to attract heaps of Huo Guo lovers.
The above article is contributed by Evita P. Recent Singapore transplant. Loves food, fashion & fitness You can find her on instagram as @evita_sg2017
Hai Xian Lao (海鲜捞)Hotpot Specialty Restaurant
8 Wilkie Road, Singapore 228095
Operating Hours: 11.30am-5am daily
Tel: +65 6509 6194