Royalty Sky Hot Pot
by Lilian Koch
On frosty days my friends and I tend to search for places to eat that will warm us up with hot comfort food. Tucked away from Elizabeth Street Mall lies a cosy, yet vibrant hot pot restaurant with an array of delicious Chinese food.
We made our way down the stairs and entered a brightly coloured room with semi-private tables in alcoves along the walls. Friendly waitstaff greeted us and explained how the hot pot system worked. Each person chooses the raw ingredients and the type of broth they would like the chef to use for their hot pot. With over 50 menu items on offer, this buffet-style restaurant is perfect for groups with varied tastes. With so many choices on offer such as crab sticks, cheese tofu, bamboo, hotdogs, and an array of noodles, vegetables, meats, and seafood, it took us a while to decide what to eat. I helped myself to some vermicelli and sweet potato noodles, Chinese cabbage, broccoli, fried egg, kelp, tofu, beef slices, chicken, and a mild beef bone soup. My slightly more adventurous cohorts chose the blood pudding, crab, bean curd, fish tofu, cuttlefish, lotus root, enoki mushrooms, bok choy, potatoes, and egg noodles, to be cooked in a spicy broth. As a side dish, we ordered fried eggplant and quail eggs. The menu pricing is different to traditional restaurants. There is no set price per meal, instead, it depends on the weight of the ingredients in the bowl, with $3.60 charged per 100 grams. This method is perfect for a group with varying degrees of hunger, as each person can order as little or as much as they like. My dish ended up around $30, but I over-ordered!
Seated in our little nook, the intimate space was a perfect place to eat and chat with friends. After comparing our different choices, we greedily dug in. Inevitably, halfway through dinner, we realised that our eyes had been much bigger than our stomachs, and that we had filled way too much food into our bowls. Not to worry, however, as it meant we had plenty to take home! Royalty Sky Hot Pot is open 7 days, 11:30am-9:30pm.