Calf Bone King 小肥牛 - Hot Pot


I have passed by the Calf Bone King in Wan Chai many times but never tried it until recently as we were in TST and our party had wanted hot pot for dinner. We came upon this branch which was actually located one level below street level. The restaurant was spacious and airy with adequate ventilation and AC. As we were here for an early dinner at 6PM, we managed to get seating right away.

The hotpot here is not buffet-style - rather you pick and choose the dishes you want. I prefer this style actually as I've been to some buffet places where they serve you pretty crappy frozen and favorless meat to control their margins. Hey you get what you pay for right? 

The menu had a variety of hot pot regulars like beef, sashimi, seafood, meatballs, noodles and vegetables as well as some specialty items like foie gras, black truffle dumpling and shark skin! Most of the items were reasonably priced. We decided to opt for regulars this time as it was our first time here. 

For our broth, we chose the Hot and Spicy Soup in Sichuan Style ($57). The broth smelled heavenly and appetizing, and the taste was spicy and numbing! It's my favorite broth for hot pot and the broth here was very delicious to enjoy. 

Freshly Sliced Prime Grade Local Beef (Large - $168) - even though they had some Angus and US beef on their menu, when we saw they had local beef on the menu, we were intrigued about the taste of local beef and decided to order that instead even though it was pricier. The beef was slightly different from other beef I usually get for hot pot in that it looked thicker and rougher in appearance. The beef was nicely marbled though with a nice ratio of fat to meat ratio. The beef was fresh and full of raw beef flavor. It was different in a nice way as it was my first time eating local beef, and it turned out to be surprisingly good!

US Black Pork Belly ($68) - ooh so very good! The pork belly was fatty in a good way as it was flavorful and delicious! Even with the spicy broth, the pork managed to retain its natural flavor. A great deal for the price as well as you get 20 pieces for only $68!

Jade Perch Sashimi ($128) - they were running a special for the jade perch sashimi so we decided to try some as it was not on their regular menu. The sashimi was sliced thinly and arrived on a bed of ice to keep them cool and fresh. I suppose you can eat these raw but as the source of the fish was unknown, I didn't want to take that risk and opted to bathe the fish in the broth before eating. I only soaked the fish for a little bit so as not to overcook it. The jade perch was pretty tasty to eat as the texture was perky and the taste was sweet. We also got another dish out of this with the fish bones as they helped us deep fry the bones in hot and spicy flavor. It was almost like eating deep fried fish skin as the bones were fried to a nice crispy state. You can choose to eat as is or dip it into the broth to soften it before eating. I prefered to dip it into the broth for the extra spiciness. Both ways are great for eating this fish. Never had jade perch before but it's great for hot pot!

Pig Blood ($24) - very soft and smooth. Pig blood is one of my favorite things to eat and it was excellent here. It was so soft that handling with chopsticks was difficult sometimes so best to use a spoon!
Dumpling with Fish Meat and Pork ($34) - usually one of my favorites for hot pot, the fish dumpling here was bigger than usual and the skin was thicker and goopier as well. The dumplings simply did not cut it for me here as they didn't taste fresh and the texture was sticky.

Meat Balls of Pork, Beef, Cuttlefish ($40) - the meatballs were freshly made as they were still in paste form. I thought the beef tasted a bit funny as though it was not fresh. The pork and the cuttlefish were better as the texture was bouncy and the flavor was natural and tasty. 

Japanese Konnyaku ($20) - a must-have for every hot pot! Konnyaku is a flavorless Japanese health food with rubbery and jello-like texture. The konnyaku easily soaked up the spicy broth so it ended up being pretty spicy! The texture was fun to eat and a nice substitutue for regular noodles. 
Verdict - Calf Bone King is a great place for hot pot with its tasty broth and decent quality of hot pot ingredients for the affordable prices! The service was quick and prompt as the restaurant was pretty empty while we were dining. The waitresses were pretty friendly and responsive overall. As the selection on the menu was vast, I'll be interested in coming back to try some of their specials like the ostrich fillet or sliced cow tube! 

Calf Bone King
Shop A, Basement, Astoria Building, 24-38 Ashley Road, Tsim Sha Tsui 
2870 0188 / 2870 0039


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