SINGAPORE – As I walk into Clarke Quay’s Da Miao Hot Pot outlet, I feel like I’ve been transported to a restaurant in China. This is their first ever overseas flagship outlet since two years ago.
Stone walls, red lanterns, and wooden furniture characterised the interior and the tea master is on hand to put on a traditional kung-fu tea art performance with every order of the refreshing Eight Treasures Tea ($5) or the Jasmine Tea ($4).
Da Miao hails from Sichuan, Chengdu, the birthplace of the widely-popular “Mala” cuisine. Mala which literally translates to “numbing spiciness” landed in Singapore a few years ago and since then, Singaporeans have taken a liking towards the Chinese spice, which is created from Sichuan peppercorns and ranges from less spicy to mid-spicy to very spicy.
Renowned patrons of the Da Miao Hot Pot brand include former First Lady of the United States Michelle Obama, the royal family of Dutch King Willem-Alexander, Czech President Miloš Zeman, former Polish president Bronisław Komorowski, ABC newscaster Robin Roberts and more.
It is known for its tongue-numbing Special Spicy Soup (Whole Soup Pot: $22) which uses over 20 different herbs and spices as well as rapeseed vegetable oil from Chengdu instead of conventional animal oil or butter. Sounds like a healthier option you can have?
They offer two different spice levels; opt for their “modified to suit local taste buds” option to play it safe or have it the “authentic Sichuan way” if you are up for the challenge. But the staff is always on hand to adjust the spiciness level according to your preference.
Enjoy traditional Sichuan delights such as the grilled Spicy Shishamo ($18) tossed in heaps of Sichuan peppercorns, red chilli peppers, fresh ginger and garlic, and Braised Pig Trotters ($16) dipped into their Special Spicy Soup.
Other popular hotpot ingredients include the Bamboo Shoot Slice ($6) imported from Sichuan, Bamboo Fungus Shrimp Wrap ($18), Chef-cut Fresh Potato Slices ($8) and Seaweed Grass ($6) specially sourced and imported.
They just launched their Beauty Collagen soup broth (Whole Soup Pot: $42), which uses mainly collagen ingredients like pork bone, fish maw, pig skin, chicken feet and pumpkin (to add the sweetness and colour for the soup), simmered for six hours to give it a creamy and rich flavour – a stark but pleasant contrast to its spicy neighbour.
You can have a hot pot combi that features both the Beauty Collagen and Special Spicy, with the Yuan Yang Soup Pot ($32).
Finish off with grapefruit or vanilla ice cream, with a dash of mala oil and garnished with almonds and Sichuan peppercorns.
If you are dining at Da Miao on an evening, you can also witness the Sichuan Face-Changing Opera spectacle, accompanied by the kung-fu tea arts performance. It is not every day you would find such performances in Singapore.
Da Miao Hot Pot is located at 3C River Valley Road, #01-11 The Cannery, Singapore 179022
Opening Hours: 11am to 10pm daily
Phone: 6250 9969
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