我不怕辣, 謝謝你 Hou Yi Hot Pot
This hot pot place is great, 112 Eldridge NYC. The owner is not from Hunan or Sichuan, but does the best in presenting ma la hot pot. This is not Sichuan mala, but a Taiwan mala 台灣的麻辣.
Soups for one (6 and up) or one can go all out with hot pot.
An interesting selection reads 麻辣臭臭鍋 (malachoucguo) in chinese or Crispy Smelly tofu in English.
A medley of items float within this hot soup, and includes kelp, rice cake, tofu (海帶;炸豆腐;年糕), and accompanying all selections is a choice of noodles such as soft white noodles, mifen, or the instant ramen (米粉;泡麵快或速麵;粉干)
Organ meat lovers as well as standard meat lovers will find this place wonderful.
All soups are delightfully hot, and those who are not satified with majority of Hunan or Sichuan venues, will find the 大辣 Spicy Hot selection very accomodating.
青島啤酒就三塊五毛塊 QingDao Draft sytle in a bottle is only 3.50.
I had the selection of 麻辣臭臭鍋 Crispy Smelly Tofu with fish. Ample portions of a nice white fish, along with soft white noodles, and beef stomach with ramen 牛肚 is stomach and tripe is 牛百葉 on the menu.
Hou Yi is the hottest place in Chinatown!
Thanks for the writeup, jon. I can't wait to try this place out!
Did you note the hours? Are the hot pot ingredients served buffet style as in some Taiwanese hot pot places? Or do you order them from a menu? Do they have split pot service?
How was the malachouchouguo (麻辣臭臭鍋)? I think a more accurate translation would be Numbing Spicy Really Stinky Tofu... What are the other soups you mention?
Also, if that is really the name of the restaurant, I will totally use it when I order. Hah!
To qualify the kind of mala hot, I have to state that just as some (not all) hot pot venues in Taiwan, there is not so much an inclusion of the numbing pepper corn and clove that one finds in the numbing mala of proper or near proper Sichuan mala. This is seriously delicious and seriously hot, following from some of the mala standards found in Taiwan.
The 麻辣臭臭鍋 (Ma La Chou Chou Guo: spicy hot smell smell pot) was quite good. The tofu that is of the chou tofu 臭豆腐 (smelly kind served usually on streets of Taiwan, and sharing similarities with the same in other provinces of China), seemed as if it was treated to be deep fried, but without the deep fry. The just put it into the soup or hot pot, and its treatment causes it to absorb more of the flavor of the soup.
Vegetables themes share the menu with meat, fish, organ meat and seafood, so those excluding meat should not be disappointed. Such selections are watercress, and mixed vegetable, mushroom and maybe one other. I ordered watercress mala tang at 6.50 for the large soup (could feed two) and added a meat (beef stomach) for an extra $2.00, and after a bit asked for a raw egg at 75 cents. Very accommodating upon special requests.
The wood ear, or 木耳 (muer: literally meaning wood/ear ) is a nice feature in the soups or hot pot stews.
Concerning buffet, there is not buffet table but the buffet items are brought to the table when you order them from the kitchen. Not exactly buffet, but they do refer to this on the menu as buffet.
Be careful of the 大辣 (dala) in english as Spicy Hot, the highest degree. For me it is prefered though I am used to it at home and out. My friend stated "why not" and ordered the 大辣 (dala) or Spicy Hot, and ended up being a serious challenge for him, though he did enjoy it, with extreme facial expressions, I might add.
The red pepper parts a little off color, that seem cooked and softened from stewing when eaten are so hot, I even have a bit extreme expressions. Orange juice works to quell the seriousness of hot, though I never bother, but could come in handy for those not accustomed to really hot, but want to try it.
On my next trip to Chinatown I plan to visit them again, simply because I am curious about the Salted Chicken that is on the starters menu. It is common street food at night in Taiwan, and is called 鹽酥雞:
鹽: (Yan) Su (酥) Ji (雞) Salty Crispy Chicken.
鹽酥雞 is in Taiwan is always great, with a can of Taiwan beer from a near by kiosk, all to tote back to home or hotel for a bit of late night snacking. Of course the chicken is out numbered by all the other things that one can choose to have thrown into the deep frier and peppered upon rescue and put into the paper bag. Things like string beans, pig blood rice squares, chicken livers and hearts, tofu etc etc.