An update of this post is available here > 10 Best Hotpot Restaurants In Singapore

[Original Entry] While Hotpot or Steamboat meals are typically eaten in the winter during supper time, Singaporeans LOVE to have them at any time of the year. Especially during the Chinese New Year period.

It is convenient and a great way to bond, I guess.

Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong once shared a personal nugget of family life, that Mr Lee Kuan Yew used the word ‘BATTLESHIP’ to mean ‘steam boat’ in a telegram to save the number of words and cost. It was a lovely story that reminded us of the importance of thriftiness.

Of course the post went viral, and people start calling steamboat ‘battleship’. “Let’s have some battleship” is the new way to jio some friends for a bonding session over tasting hotpot.

This post will focus on the Chinese style steamboat, and here are 6 places in Singapore to have them. I still hope to expand this list to 10 someday, till I realised some of the other steamboat restaurants I tried last year – Faigo and Hotpot Kingdom, have closed down!

Hai Di Lao Hot Pot
Vivocity #03-09 1 Harbourfront Walk, Singapore 098585
Tel: +65 6250 7557
+65 6250 7667
Opening Hours: 10:30am – 6am

Clarke Quay
3D River Valley Road #02-04, Singapore 179023
T: +65 6337 8626
+65 6337 8627
Opening Hours: 10:30am – 6am

313 Somerset
313 Orchard Road #04-23/24 Singapore 238895
T: +65 6835 7227
+65 6835 7337
Opening Hours: 10:30am – 6am

IMM #03-01, 2 Jurong East Street 21 Singapore 609601
Tel: +65 6896 4111
+65 6896 4222
Opening Hours: 10:30am – 4am

One pot, endless smiles. Hai Di Lao can be known more for their gimmicks more than their food itself – not that it is any bad.

“Have you heard about the hotpot place with FREE manicure service? Oh and FREE fruits and popcorn while you are waiting for a table?”

Super good service. Recommended food include Aorta (pork/beef), Fresh Tripe, handmade balls, and house made noodles – get the guy to do those acrobatic pulls in front of you.

The tomato and laksa soup bases are some of my favourites. Hai Di Lao is indeed all about the entire package and experience, and certain satisfying.

Price is on the high side, and some may not be happy with the extra $4 charge on sauces.

I am quite willing to pay more for the attentive service, and its fresh ingredients and variety. Their 3rd branch in Singapore… is going to be at Jurong East IMM. (Read: Hai Di Lao 海底捞火锅 Clarke Quay and Hai Di Lao 海底捞火锅 313@Somerset)

Beauty In The Pot – The Centrepoint
The Centrepoint, 176 Orchard Road #05-15/16 Singapore 238843 (Somerset MRT)
Tel: +65 62353557
Opening Hours: 11:30am – 6:00am Daily

Beauty In The Pot – OneKM
OneKM, 11 Tanjong Katong Road #02-21 Singapore 437157 (Paya Lebar MRT)
Tel: +65 6702 2542
Opening Hours: 11am – 3pm, 5:30pm – 1am (Mon-Thurs), 11am – 3am (Fri-Sat, Eve of PH), 11am – 1am (Sun, PH)

Beauty In The Pot at OneKM is another concept from Paradise Group.

Their signature broth is the Beauty Collagen Broth ($20 per pot, $25 for twin flavours), comprising of shark’s cartilage and boiled for more than eight hours every day. Sounds machiam like a Tsukada Nojo Bijin Nabe in Chinese pot.

This cloudy, rich, smooth, collagen-rich soup is flavoursome yet not overly intense, complementing most of the ingredients cooked in it. We found ourselves sipping the dense soup non-stop. So tasty and shiok!.

We paid about $70 – $80 per person, similar to what we would have paid at some of its higher-end competitors.

For those intending to make a reservation at The Centrepoint, I tried to and it was almost impossible to call through (I physically went down in the end).

Waiting time despite having a reservation, could also be long. Beauty In The Point (Centrepoint)

Imperial Treasure Steamboat Restaurant
Great World City, #01-37, 1 Kim Seng Promenade , Singapore 237994
Tel: +65 6235 6008
Opening Hours: Lunch 11.00am – 3.00pm, Dinner 6.00pm – 11.00pm Daily

ION Orchard, #04-09/10, 2 Orchard Turn, Singapore 238801
Tel: +65 6636 9339
Opening Hours: Lunch 11.00am – 3.00pm, Dinner 6.00pm – 11.00pm Daily

Imperial Treasure’s soups are simmered for hours, their Ginseng chicken soup tasting rich and nourishing is my favourite. If not, there are always the Traditional Pork’s Bone, Seal & Kelp, Parsley & Century Egg, Sichuan Spicy and the intriguing Satay Flavoured Soups for choices.

We loved the fresh and bouncy handmade prawn and pork balls, and tender pieces of sliced marble beef and kurobuta pork belly. Set course of 2 at $98++ onwards.

The highlight of the entire meat has to be its condiments and sauces, ranging from peanut sauce, green and red chills, spring onions, plum sauce, chopped garlic, sambal chili and chicken rice chilli … All 12 of them. Imperial Treasure Steamboat Restaurant (Great World City))

Crystal Jade Steamboat Kitchen
#02-32, Plaza Singapura, 68 Orchard Rd, Singapore 238839
Tel: +65 6336 2833
Opening Hours: 11 – 3pm, 5.30pm – 10pm (Mon – Fri), 11am – 10pm (Sat, Sun and PH)

If I talk about Imperial, I cannot not talk about Crystal Jade right? Crystal Jade Steamboat Kitchen steamboat buffet at affordable prices in a restaurant setting along with the traditional Cantonese favourites.

The 90-minute buffet includes more than 35 ingredients such as fresh chicken, pork and beef slices, mussels, mushrooms and vegetables. I wished duration was more than 90 minutes though.

The 6 different soup bases include Pork’s Bone, Tomato, Curry, Miso, Superior, and Spicy Mala Soup (I hear superior I also feel like choosing already.)

Weekday dinner buffet is at $21.90++ for adults and $17.90++ for children aged 12 years and below. On weekends and public holidays, dinner buffet is $27.90++ for adults and $23.90++ for children aged 12 years and below.

If not, go for the Crystal Jade La Mian Xiao Long Bao branch at Holland Village which offers free flow Xiao Long Bao with steamboat.

Da Miao Hotpot 大妙火锅
Clarke Quay Block C #01-11
Tel: +65 6250 9969
Opening Hours: 11:00am – 10:00pm Daily

Good news for those craving for authentic Sichuan style Mala hotpot, the popular Da Miao Hotpot from Chengdu China has opened at Clarke Quay.

The highlight is its Mala soup base, said to contain more than twenty spices, added with special plant oil and herbs. Therefore, it is not that greasy, yet still quintessentially Sichuan.

If you fear for your tickling tongue, you can always opt for a “modified to local taste” option, or have it the “original Chinese way” if you are up for the challenge. You decide.

Of course, there are also choices of Pig Bones, Tomato and Mushroom soup bases.

Ingredients-wise, get the Beef or Fresh Shrimp Paste ($18) – a flat block of freshly-minced meat paste, made without additional starch so that you can still savour the original favours after being cooked in the soup bases.

Come at night, and you will be entertained by traditional Sichuan performances of “Bian Lian” (literally meaning mask changing), and Chinese long-sprout tea pouring ceremony by professional “Stage Artists”.

Long Qing Specialty Hotpot
18 Hong Kong Street Singapore 059661 (Clarke Quay MRT)
Tel: +65 6533 1618
Opening Hours: 5:30pm – 11:00pm (Tues – Sun), Closed Mon

Long Qing is one of those not-so-commercial brands that we would have liked to give our support.

Located at Hong Kong Street opposite Clarke Quay MRT, the interior of concrete wall and wooden furnishing makes it kind of ‘hipster’ as a hotpot specialty restaurant.

Its soup bases is kept fairly straightforward with 4 to choose from – Signature Clear Broth, Ma La, Tomato and Wildroom ($14.00 for one soup base, $18.00 for dual).

The Clear Broth soup is recommended, MSG free, cooked for more than 10 hours, with a light herbal taste due to dang gui added. Suitable for those who would like soup bases that are not too heavy.

I wondered if it was due to the CNY period, but the meat slices weren’t as impressive as I imagined – had that ‘frozen’ bite in them, and could have been fresh.

Other Related Entries
Imperial Treasure Steamboat Restaurant (Great World City))
Beauty In The Pot (OneKM Mall)
Hai Di Lao 海底捞火锅 (Clarke Quay)
Hai Di Lao 海底捞火锅 (313@Somerset)

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