7154 Sperling Ave, Burnaby BC V5E 2W5
Every year for my sister’s birthday, we usually have a meal (of her choosing) from one of the following options: dim sum, hot pot, or The Keg. Nine out of ten times, it’s dim sum but every so often she hits me with the hot pot, and this year happened to be it.
We headed out to Pearl Hot Pot in Burnaby for a early birthday dinner on Saturday. Now, I know what you’re thinking: this is probably the worst type of food to be eating during a highly contagious pandemic. I was thinking the same… but then was pleasantly surprised to find that they had individual hot pot options and did not follow the conventional, Asian family-style tradition of eating.
We sat in a plexiglass booth at the back near the kitchen. I let my sister lead the way: she is much more of a hot pot expert than I am. Her, my boyfriend, and I all went with the beef brisket pot and upgraded the broth to the “Satay Soup Base”. Her boyfriend selected the lamb pot, also with the satay soup.
We were each presented with a plate of meat, a bowl of veggies, various hot pot items, a side of chosen carb (rice/udon), an egg, dipping sauce, and our drink. There was a lot going on! I’ll break it down for you by major component.
The beef was sliced very thinly, highlighting its pinky-red colour and fat marbling. Once cooked, it was easy to chew and not grisly at all, though also not too flavorful – you had to rely on the dipping sauce for that.
The veggie bowl was stacked! It included: greens, a wonton, a fish ball, tofu, imitation crab, a single prawn, various veggies and mushrooms. I was not able to get through most of it. The udon came uncooked on the side and I enjoyed boiling it and eating it with the sauce as well.
The broth was really tasty and I was entertained by boiling my food – though it did require constant minding. I found the satay soup base to be a great choice and had more depth than the regular broth. It helped to infuse the various items with more flavour.
I found the fruit tea (which tasted like lychee) to be very sweet but refreshing and nice to pair with all the saltiness of the broth and dipping sauce. My partners green tea version was just as sweet.
Finally, we were served a cute teeny bowl of black sesame ice cream – I’m lactose intolerant so I only had a couple spoonfuls. There was definitely a forward sesame flavour as well as some texture from the seeds. Once again, it was on the sweeter side.
I didn’t mind Pearl Hot Pot, but it was a lot of food, and a lot of active participation involved. I also had to man my broth to ensure it didn’t boil over. I kept letting it run hot on high and then shutting it down before things got out of control. I also managed to burn the roof of my mouth because I have no patience in waiting for food to cool down. I’ll probably have hot pot again, thought not sure if I’d return to Pearl, and if I did, it would be likely prompted by my sister. Happy Birthday sis.
- Beef Brisket Pot Combo $16.95 + Satay Soup Base $4
- Lamb Pot Combo $17.95 + Satay Soup Base $4
- Pot Combo Includes:
Choice of: Rice, Udon, or Vermicelli
Choice of: Green Tea, Fruit Tea, or Black Tea
Dessert: Ice Cream (Rotating Flavour) – Black Sesame
Beats: This Is Why I’m Hot – MIMS