Acclaimed Chinese hot pot shop begins soft opening of first Houston-area location

A highly acclaimed hot pot restaurant has made its Texas debut. HaiDiLao began its soft opening on May 3 in Katy.

Dubbed the “Ferrari of hot pot restaurants” by Los Angeles Times food critic Jonathan Gold, HaiDiLao serves an extensive menu with multiple choices for different broths and sauces to create each individual bowl. A wide range of meat — including wagyu beef — seafood, and vegetables are available.

At the end of the meal, a “noodle dancer” makes hand-pulled noodles tableside. Diners use the noodles to soak up the remaining drops of broth and sauce.

Even more than its food, the restaurant is known for its service. Diners may receive a hand massage while they wait for a table or be given plastic covers to shield their phones from broth. The restaurant brought employees from a California location to assist with the opening, according to a press release.

“It’s a fun, bonding experience for families. It’s authentic, and the kind of restaurant you’d find on a trip to Asia,” Heather Nguyen, development partner for Katy Grand developer NewQuest, said in a statement.

Currently, the restaurant is only open for dinner, and reservations are required. Customers may request a time through the restaurant’s website.

Announced over a year ago, the 200-seat restaurant occupies approximately 6,300-square-feet in the Katy Grand shopping center. It joins Japanese book store Kinokuniya, Taiwan-based concept 85?C Bakery Cafe, and Kura Revolving Sushi. In the coming months, Katy Grand will add the first Texas location of Tim Ho Wan, a Hong Kong-based dim sum restaurant with a Michelin star, and PopStroke, a mini golf facility with courses designed by Tiger Woods.

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