B1/F, Tower C, Heqiao Mansion, A8 Guanghua Donglu
We’d like to tell you about a special place called Kagen. It’s the place where Gloria made her only exception to her general dislike for Hot Pot/Steamboat. At Kagen, they have taken this longstanding method of communal eating and updated it a little.
For starters, Kagen’s soup stocks are things of beauty. Each of the 6 soups is balanced to complement your dipping ingredients in their own special way. If you’re having a meat-dominated hotpot, go for the chicken and mushroom or the miso stock. Those are our favourites.
Diners also get a customizable dipping sauce. A sauce-mobile will be wheeled up for you to choose from a range of 4 sauces and 8 condiments. Once again, depending on what you’re having with your hotpot, the waitress will recommend different combinations for your meats or seafood. The regular sesame paste is your sauce for all occasions, and the aptly named seafood paste (a kind of XO-dipping sauce familiar to Singaporeans and Malaysians) goes well with (whatd’yaknow!) seafood. The sweet-and-sourish yuzu fruit vinegar was a surprise package, and also Gloria’s favourite. Best served with a healthy tablespoonful of coriander and fried garlic.
Lastly, Kagen’s really good for lazy eaters. Hotpot is a very hands-on, involved activity, and sometimes it’s nice to be able to enjoy the food without the toil. There was always a helper handy to put stuff into the pot for us, giving Gloria and I more time to talk and catch up on life.
The lighting was a little dim for us to take good pictures of the food we ordered. We also recommend the garlic egg fried rice, the saba shioyaki and the unagi to go with the meal. Especially tasty if you’re hungry and can’t wait for the soup to boil! The meal came up to about 200RMB per person.