Pots of flavor to be found at Beijing's Ao Ba Nian

By LI YINGXUE | China Daily | Updated: 2019-10-11 08:40
[Photo provided to China Daily]

According to Huang, however, what really sets Ao Ba Nian apart from its competitors in Beijing is the selection of traditional Taiwan-style hotpot ingredients. "For example, the spicy hotpot is served with duck blood and tofu prepared in the traditional Taiwan style. Diners can enjoy unlimited refills of them throughout their meal," he says.

Fish-roe dumplings, known as "lucky bags" in Chinese, feature premium Alaskan cod roe wrapped in tofu skin and tied into purse shapes. Once cooked, the dumplings have a toothsome texture and a strong seafood flavor.

The homemade deep-fried tofu skin is popular. It arrives at tables in crisp sheets that soften in the hotpot, taking on the flavor of the soup.

A selection of such Taiwan-style street snacks as salt-and-pepper pork ribs and deep-fried dough sticks are also served at the restaurant.

To pair with the hotpot, a pilsner beer has been brewed exclusively for Ao Ba Nian by Mod Craft-beer Taproom. The beer, called Shaung-8, is a classic Pilsner with a crisp, mildly sweet flavor and a light, golden color.

"For nondrinkers, we offer a selection of Taiwan-style bubble and fruit teas," Huang adds.

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