The One With 8 Reasons Why I Love New Star Hotpot At Mongkok

I never considered myself as a fan of steamboat… or hotpot, as it is commonly known in Hong Kong. In Malaysia and Singapore, the choices of hotpot outlets were somewhat limited. Had it not been because of their eat-all-you-can style, I don’t think I would have ventured to any of these establishments.

That perception changed after I moved to Hong Kong, as I discovered the joy and delight of New Star Seafood Restaurant (新星海鮮酒家) outlet located at Mongkok.

Despite its name, majority of its patrons were there for their hotpot every night.

New Star Steamboat @ Mongkok

(Side note: Subsequently I went to a few other good, if not better, hotpot places here, but New Star remains one of the places to go when my Singapore friends come visiting)

Why do I love it so? Here are eight good reasons:

# 1 – Unlimited food & drinks at HK$78

New Star Steamboat @ Mongkok

Its price was a major pull factor. At HK$78 per head, you get unlimited food and drinks. Granted, there were a couple of items which will add on to your final bill; more on that later. This price applies for dine-in after 9 p.m. everyday, including weekends. You’ll need to head to the restaurant to get a ticket to queue for a table, and they start giving that out at 8.30 p.m., so plan your timing properly. There was once I got there only after nine and we had to wait for more than an hour before we were seated.

#2 – A wide range of soup base to choose from

New Star Steamboat @ Mongkok

The first time I visited New Star, I dithered over the choice of soup base for ages. There were so many to choose from; drunken chicken, herbal chicken, pepper pig stomach… of course you’ll need someone who can read Chinese to order it for you. The price listed is one of those add-ons you pay on top of your cost per head.

#3 – Deep fried beancurd skin

New Star Steamboat @ Mongkok

Okay, I know that this is not the real name of this top-up dish. I have tried the same dish at other outlets, but the one at Mongkok did this the best. The secret to eat this properly is to pick it up while it’s still hot, dip it into the soup for three seconds (any longer it will get too soggy), and then chow down. The soup gave it a strong flavour, and yet the crispiness was somehow still intact. It will be an experience you will not forget in a hurry.

#4 – Endless rounds of fresh meat and seafood

New Star Steamboat @ Mongkok

At some other eat-all-you-can hotpot restaurants, you risk being served raw food which is not fresh, or in small quantity, or (worse) both. But at New Star, the food I have experienced so far had always been fresh. Sliced beef, marinated chicken, fish fillets, mini scallops… even the processed food like meat balls are springier than most. The serving portion was large, so remember not to get overly excited while placing your order, or you might not be able to finish everything!

#5 – Limited Condiments

New Star Steamboat @ Mongkok

I know this is a strange reason to like a restaurant, when you actually have to pay for condiments such as sliced chilly, minced garlic and the like. Perhaps I am one who don’t like to add such stuff to my food; I prefer its natural taste, unless it’s very, very bad. The fact that it was not free flow means you tend to focus more on the actual taste of your hotpot food. Also, the quality of the condiments are maintained. Well, that’s my theory anyway.

#6 – Good customer service

New Star Steamboat @ Mongkok

Your first encounter with its staff may be (for the lack of a better word) quite shocking. However considering the crowd that the counter lady (who is always the same person every time I visit; how did she do that?!) has to manage, her somewhat crude but yet polite demeanor was appropriate. After all, you are not really yourself when you are hungry ;)

But once you are inside, most of the staff (usually aunties; middle-aged ladies) are very friendly. Once I asked for extra peanuts, of which you usually have to pay for. The waitress saw how much I was enjoying it, she gave me two more bowls with a finger on her lips and a knowing wink.

#7 – Big gathering atmosphere

New Star Hot Pot, Mongkok

There was just something about New Star which invites you tuck into your food heartily while yakking away with your friends, all the while guzzling the free-flow drinks (more on that later). It was always rowdy, always noisy, but not at a level which you can’t hold a decent conversation. And that alone is quite a rarity in Hong Kong, where restaurants are so cramped that at times I felt as if I am having meals with the strangers at the next table.

#8 – Best of all; UNLIMITED BEER!

New Star Hot Pot, Mongkok

This gotta be the BEST reason why I loved this place. At the price I was paying, I get to enjoy unlimited beer! And not just any unknown China-brand, but Blue Ice. Okay, so it wasn’t Carlsberg or Heineken, but let me repeat that again; it’s UNLIMITED BEER! Add that to the free flow food, you can safely say goodbye to that two weeks worth of gym.

The Conclusions

What I would order again? Definitely the deep fried beancurd skin. I order it everytime I went
What I would never touch again? Everything seems pretty good to me. You just gotta be selective on what you order; afterall, not all of us are cows with four stomachs ;)
Would I come again? Definitely!
Would I have dinner dates here? Ha ha ha ha ha. The very thought tickles.
Would I have dinner gathering here? Yes, in fact some of my friends seem rather bored of the place by now as we visit rather often.

New Star Seafood Restaurant (新星海鮮酒家)
G/F-2/F, Mainway Court
15-33 Kwong Wa Street, Mongkok
2780 2226


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