One of my top recs for Chengdu is always Shu Jiu Xiang hot pot, but I hadn't eaten there in over a year. It was time for a return.
We asked for the yuanyang hot pot, medium spicy (鸳鸯锅、 中辣). Like many upscale hot pot places, they now mix the oil and the soup at the table. This proves they are using fresh oil.
For snacks, we ordered their flatbread (飞饼). We noticed a snack called 猫猫鱼, or 'cat cat fish', a menu item so new that the server wasn't even sure what it was. We ordered it out of curiosity and got crispy fried small fish covered with the typical ma la seasoning. We liked it so much we got another plate.
Some of the order. We really liked the shrimp dumplings (虾饺) and the crispy pork (酥肉):
This was another new item on the menu, extra-thin 'kung fu' potato slices (功夫土豆片). The way they soaked up the excellent Shu Jiu Xiang spicy broth made them worthy of the name.
Since the oil scandal last year, the costs of hot pot have gone up everywhere and Shu Jiu Xiang is definitely more expensive than I remember. However, it is still one of the top hot pot experiences in town.