the hidden gem in town

Jue Wang

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I had a very special dinner with my boyfriend today. We went to the new Lao Hot Pot restaurant in Parnell Street. We arrived at the restaurant at around 7 o’clock in the afternoon. It was very busy. There was no free table. We have to wait 40 minutes before we were led to a table.

The reason why it is so busy is because it is the first hot pot buffet restaurant in Ireland. It means that the very authentic Chinese food finally arrived in Ireland. Thirty odd years ago, when Hong Kong Chinese started to open restaurant in Ireland, they brought in with them Chinese food. However, their food might have been much Europeanized. Main land Chinese started to come to Ireland since 1998, once there was as many as 80,000 Chinese in Ireland. Restaurant with more authentic Chinese food were since being opened. Believe or not, Ireland has the most authentic Chinese food in Europe. You are talking about Chinese started to come into UK, France or Germany since 100 years ago and there are hundreds of Chinese restaurant in Amsterdam. But their food had adopted the local taste to try to survive. While in Dublin, where the majority of Chinese are from mainland, as oppose to other countries where most Chinese are from Hong Kong. They opened restaurant to meet the demand from the Chinese community, hence the authentic taste. A lot of adventurous Irish come into these restaurant to try something new, even its very hard for them to order in these restaurants.

This hot pot buffet brought authenticity to another level. While Chinese food is popular, still hot pot remains a Chinese favorite  Many westerners are not able to try it because its taste and its demand of skills of chopsticks. I bet this will be the only of its kind in the whole Europe. In a small sense, it signaled Dublin has catching up really quickly as a metropolitan city in Europe.

a video shows hotpot eating culture in china:

How to make a easy tradition Chinese hotpot in your own house:

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Jue Wang