All You Can Eat Hot Pot (Flushing)

One rainy, chilly night, Hungry, TC, DLS and I headed out for all you can eat hot pot in Flushing.  We’d already done Shanghai Tide last year, so Hungry went to the internets and found this place with no English name on the sign outside, though a pretty modern looking inside.  We took our place at the table and asked about the all you can eat. 

Individual pots – hallelujah!  That’s my preference.  These took a long time to get hot for some reason, strangely – induction is supposed to be really fast.  While we waited for our pots… for everything… the server came by to look at something, and while holding a pot of boiling broth, leaned over, and proceeded to spill a good amount of said boiling broth onto my chair.  Luckily, a split second before the broth hit my lap, Hungry said “Yvo, watch out!” and I leapt out of the way.  Phew.  I would not have been happy – he apologized but barely.  Oh yeah, the hot pot was $25/person, and said it included draft beer.  But then we were told Coor’s Light only.  Ah well.  In any case, there was a huge language barrier – despite the ordering system basically being check off what items you want on a piece of paper – and we received horrible service, worse than even the crappiest Chinese place in Chinatown.  We decided it was because we didn’t speak Mandarin, but literally, our server scowled at us any time we asked for something, and then would take 15 minutes to bring us simple things like raw eggs for our sauce. 

Various dumplings, fish cakes, tofu.

Fish balls, beef balls, cuttle fish, shiitake mushrooms, enoki mushrooms.

DLS’s herbal Chinese broth. 

Mussels, shrimp, crabs.


Tripe, squid, fish.

Napa cabbage.

More shrimp.


Gizzards and duck blood.


Corn, tomatoes, tofu, tofu skin.

Pork belly.



Our whole table once all the food was set out – they really need to have the plate tier racks to help with space issues.  We didn’t actually even get all the food we ordered.  There was some divide in our ordering system – we wrote ‘1’ for some items and ‘4’ for others, but every order was the same size, which led to a lot of excess food… but I really wanted my udon noodles, dammit.  In any case, we sat and ate for hours, just working away at the initial bunch of food given to us.  Our service was seriously horrible, horrible, horrible – ignored, our beers were never refilled, and the dirty looks the server kept giving me really annoyed me.  I didn’t do anything wrong!  Sad, because the food was actually pretty good – the quality of everything offered and eaten was good, and I would definitely go back – if I could guarantee a slightly more pleasant experience than what we had.  $26 for the amount of food we ate isn’t bad by a long shot.  Ah well.

“Udu Cafe” (it is unmarked)
3704 Prince St
, NY 11354


  1. Ellen says

    It’s not because you can’t speak mandarin. I can and have gotten much of the same service. Not getting glared at (sounds like a really grumpy waiter) but not getting all I order, and taking forever to serve. I think that’s their new tactic to get ppl to give ppl less. I’ve been going there for a long while and it’s only the last 2 times that I’ve noticed the service is seriously crap. I still go once in awhile though.. for all you can eat hotpot, the quality of the food is not bad. and yes definitely better than shanghai tide. I won’t eat there, period.

    • says

      My suggestion our service would have been better if we spoke Mandarin is based on a friend of mine having gone (who speaks fluent Mandarin) and having perfectly fine/normal service. Also, the tables around us didn’t seem to have any problems with service – it was literally just us.

      Oh well… I’ll keep looking for a hot pot place. Have you been to Little Lamb?

  2. says

    There’s another hot pot place up on Roosevelt Ave, near Union Street (I forgot the name though). It’s a Korean/Chinese/hot pot retaurant. Haven’t been there for awhile, but the service was really great, though it was also their grand opening at that time.

    Sorry about the bad service. That’s my pet peeve in Asian restaurants. I would pay more just for better service. That’s one of the main reasons I dine out – to be pamper. πŸ™‚

  3. T.C. says

    The quality of the food was good but it was really shitty service and unwarranted attitude that do not help their case. The female bartender was very nice and friendly though.

    I really liked the service at Shanghai Tide so much better.

  4. says

    I would go back a second time too just to see if it was the waiter or the place in general. Having your own pot is nice too. And having better quality food is really good.

      • Lily says

        I’ve been to this hot pot place TONS of times (its one of my favorites). Here’s the trick: they actually don’t like people who order the all you can eat menu. Thats when they take their sweet slow time. IF you order a la carte, they are your best firned. Hope this helps! πŸ™‚ PS: must try – the strawberry ice tea.

  5. says

    It’s always so disappointing when the service ruins a decent meal. Why not get one large communal hot pot instead of individual pots? The soup would taste much better in the end, especially if you had udon to slurp it down.

    • says

      Actually, I prefer having my own pot – having a communal pot involves reaching and sometimes people put things in there that I don’t like (spicy things, or gamey meats that leave a gamey taste in the soup afterwards)… all a matter of personal preference πŸ™‚

  6. says

    Well, to back up your theoryβ€”I was there a few weeks ago and thought the service was exceptionally accommodating/nice, and we did speak Mandarin to the servers. I actually commented to my friends about how weird it was to get such decent service in a Chinese restaurant.

    • says

      I’m glad I didn’t just make that up – it really seemed the other diners around us had way better service! And we were one of few who didn’t speak Mandarin (but were all Asian).

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