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“Mala HuoGuo for the Gods (thats spicy hotpot for you non chinese speakers)”
Review of Hai Di Lao

Hai Di Lao
Ranked #81 of 10,930 Restaurants in Singapore
Certificate of Excellence
Cuisines: Chinese
Dining options: Late Night, Reservations
Restaurant details
Dining options: Late Night, Reservations
Singapore, Singapore
Level 4 Contributor
33 reviews
29 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“Mala HuoGuo for the Gods (thats spicy hotpot for you non chinese speakers)”
Reviewed June 4, 2013

I'm just gonna go straight to it and say that Hai Di Lao probably has the absolute BEST mala huoguo i've had in my life. I generally don't like eating hotpot in singapore or malahuoguo for that matter based on two things, its too hot here and the hotpot usually sucks. So yes, I actually am biased against hotpot at all times but I am incredibly glad that I went to this place. Firstly, the restaurant is very modern, with great air conditioning and facilities. Also the ventilation is great so at no point will there be steam coating your face in spicy sweat which was something I always found unappealing about eating malahuoguo in singapore.

Now onto the food...it was absolutely awesome and I dont say this lightly as I rarely ever rave about food to such a degree. This is mostly because of two things fundamental to a good hotpot...the stock and the sauce both of which haidilao stock in abundance and quality. The yin yang hotpot was tastier than the 2nd best malahuoguo ive had by an order of several magnitudes and it wasn't MSG. They actually bother to boil the stock for the soup so that it is genuinely tasty and full of flavor. Next up is the sauce, the place has a selection of something like 20 different sauces (if not more) and all of them are delicious. The zimajiang was thick and flavoursome unlike the watery nonsense you might get at a $15 all you can eat hotpot at geylang or a similar venue. So feel free to mix and match till you create the ideal dipping concoction. The stock and sauce is so good that you don't even need good quality ingredients for a great malahuoguo experience, but luckily haidilao also has very good quality ingredients, the meat, tofu, vegetables etc were all good at the very least. No bad dishes.

Now onto the bad points, this place is EXPENSIVE, I spent about $50 a head between myself and a friend and although we did order a decent amount, it was no where a huge amount. Although the price may drop with bigger group I would say youll be paying at least $35 a head at the very least if you want the full malahuoguo dining experience. The service isn't superb but frankly, who cares about top class service when eating hotpot anyways.

For abit of perspective, I have had the real malahuoguo in China and taipei and many other countries for that matter. I've even had the haidilao in shanghai itself (its a chain) but I suspect due to the quality control of singapore, the chain here is much better. So if youre willing to fork out abit for a divine malahuoguo experience then hai di lao is the place for you.

  • Visited June 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Ghibly89
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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233 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Indonesian first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Korean first
  • Norwegian first
  • Polish first
  • Russian first
  • Thai first
  • Any
English first
Singapore, Singapore
Level 3 Contributor
11 reviews
5 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“marvelous food and service!”
Reviewed May 8, 2013 via mobile

Me and my friend went there at 4.30pm. Lucky is not peak hours we manage to get the seat fast. First step in to the restaurant the atmosphere feel relaxing. On the right you will see free manicure for the ladies after you will see a play room for kids. when the staff brings us to the seat. The ordering is by ipad. the staff is well trained. We order the black chicken soup for the base. We only try to drink the soup without put all the foods in the soup is excellent. The service firsy was quite slow maybe is their break time but still ok for us. We total 6ppl we spend ard $250 but we feel alright cause the service is worth for it.

  • Visited April 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Mangojiejie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Singapore, Singapore
Level 6 Contributor
85 reviews
15 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 107 helpful votes
“I love it, love it love it!”
Reviewed April 1, 2013

The 1st time we came here, it was for a late dinner around 9.30pm and we still had to queue for 20min. During the wait, you can do manicure & play some board games. Hai Di Lao also serve the same usual 3 fruit - Watermelon, Honeydew and Longan plus 2 types of drinks, plum drink or herbal drink as you queue for a table. There are also popcorns and dried banana chips.

The 2nd time we went for dinner was on a public holiday. They couldnt take reservation anymore and asked that we take a queue number at the restaurant. Although they said we may need to queue for 90min, we ended up queuing about 2hr 30 min!!! During the wait, you can shop nearby the restaurant which is not too bad.

There are different soup base costing $ 16, $18 or $ 20 each. You can have up to 2 mixed soup and the cost will be based on the more expensive soup. The ordering is done on a tablet. The portion is pretty decent and if there are only 2 of you, maybe you can consider to order 0.5 portion (1/2 portion) which work out better and you can order more variety of food. I think noodle and seafood cannot be ordered in 0.5 portion. Plates of meat are neatly and nicely presented. We love the beancurb! Fish Glue type dishes are just as delicious.

We opted for free flow of drink $ 3 each. I really like the sauce station. Per person cost $ 4 for the sauce including the same 3 type of fruit. There are easily 16-20 different type of sauces you can do your own preferance mix.

The only noodle dish cost $ 3 and comes with a presentation! Kids love this and even I giggled like a little girl. It is a small portion and good only for 1-2 person.

Of course do not forget the attentive staff. Thumb up!!!

  • Visited March 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank KLene
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Singapore, Singapore
Level 6 Contributor
142 reviews
55 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 87 helpful votes
“Impressive!”
Reviewed January 4, 2013

Having missed the chance to try this famous hotpot restaurant in Beijing, I am extremely excited that this restaurant has opened in Singapore. I am so impressed with this restaurant that I visited twice in a span of 2 weeks. My guests are equally impressed.

The crowd can be horrendous but the management is considerate enough to provide ample entertainment so that customers do not find the waiting that long. What do they offer? Manicure services! You can do your nails in a nice room while waiting for your turn. Not your cup of tea? You can play games or do some origami. Customers with kids can drop there kids in their small playroom. While the playroom is small, the toys are engaging enough. Better than most playrooms I have seen in Singapore.

Customers order their food via the ipad. Trust me, it's easy to use. I love this restaurant because I can order half portion. This is ideal for people who want to sample many dishes yet afraid that they can't finish their food. Also, solo diners have no fears about not finishing their order. The ingredients are fresh. I like their chicken soup very much. The soup costs about sgd 20. It might sound expensive to some but I think it's very much worth the cost. The soup comes with black chicken, mushroom and fishballs. Very yummy! There is a variety of sauces for you to choose from. On top of that, there is watermelon and longans for dessert.

These days, it's very hard to find a restaurant with excellent service. In HDL, In HDL, every staff is eager to please. Yes, every staff. They are sensitive to their customers' needs. For instance, seeing that I have many shopping bags, one staff quickly pulled a chair for me to place all my shopping bags. The restaurant also offers plastic bags for your handphones so that the food will not dirty your phone while you dine. I guess people need to visit the restaurant to experience their excellent service.

On two occasions, I had a wonderful experience. I could relax and have a long dinner because my kids were well entertained.

  • Visited January 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Bintangkechil
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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