Never leave Taiwan without experiencing Wu Lao Hotpot, Taiwan’s most famous hotpot and popular among the locals!

Wu Lao Guo Hotpot Taiwan (無老鍋) – Must Try

Also known as the original Beauty Pot, Wu Lao Hotpot is reputed to be beauty-enhancing with its collagen-rich broth.

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I have an unexplained love for hotpots. There’s something appealing about cooking and eating from the same boiling pot with your loved ones.

Taiwan is famous for their hotpots, especially the Mala hotpot (馬辣鍋), something that both Tommy and I had yet to experience, but were keen to try at least one hotpot on this vacation to Taiwan.

Near to Kindness Hotel Sanduo Shopping District

On our first day at Kaohsiung, as we were struggling with our luggage while looking for the way to the Kindness Hotel Sanduo Shopping District, we chanced upon this posh-looking hotpot restaurant called Wu Lao Guo (無老鍋). It was a name that was unfamiliar to us, but we made a mental note to come back to this place for lunch once we drop off our luggage at the hotel.

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We recommend staying in Sanduo Shopping District (三多商圈) which has lots of eateries, small shops and large departmental stores all within walking distance.

Wu Lao Hotpot Ambience

Wu Lao Hotpot looked really like an up-scale restaurant.  We were initially hesitant to go in for fear of the damage it would do to our budget.  But a quick check of the menu puts our fears to rest.

The restaurant had an overwhelmingly strong and unique herbal aroma.  This, we learned later, was the aroma of their signature soup base for their hotpots.

One aspect of the restaurant that I loved so much was the attention given to details.  It is set in a very non-Chinese style although this essentially is still a Chinese restaurant. Complemented with soft lightings and attentive attendances, this place exudes the comfortable ambience of a spa.

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To avoid disappointments, make a reservation online before your trip and enjoy an exclusive set meal.

Wu Lao Hotpot Menu

And then it cames to ordering our food, which became quite a confusing affair.  Perhaps it was our lack of proficiency in reading the traditional Chinese words in the menu (we grew up learning 简笔字 ok?) , but after struggling for a long while, we gave up and asked the attendant to explain their menu to us.

Wu Lao (無老) had two types of primary soup base – their Bread Tofu Soup (139NT) and Spicy Wulao Soup (139NT) which is about SGD$7 each, charged on a per person basis (not by per pot!).

The third kind of soup base is the Ice-Cream Tofu Soup, which was actually the bread tofu soup and comes with one dumpling-like ‘ice-cream’ per person.  At 159NT, it cost 20NT more than the bread tofu soup, so it works out to about SGD$1 for each ‘ice-cream dumpling’.

If you want a twin broth pot (鴛鴦鍋), then you pay 139NT for the two type of soups and pay an additional 180 NT (SGD$9) per table.  That sounds like a lot to pay for just a soup base, so we decided to save our pockets and ask for just the ice-cream tofu soup.

The signature bread-tofu soup base – a concoction of goodies such as Ginseng, red dates, herbs boiled with chicken and pork bones.  As to why it is called a bread tofu soup and why it appears as a creamy white liquid remains as a mystery to me.

The spicy wulao soup.  This soup is made up of goji berries, various chillis, peppers and white sesame. Sounds like it was going to be real spicy.

After ordering the soup base, the next thing is to order the food to put into the hotpot. Rice was complimentary and free-flow.  We learned afterwards that the tau-pok and duck blood curd (yucks!) that came with the pot were also free-flow (too bad we didn’t like either of these).   We were served bottles of hot soup base to replenish the pot, and complimentary hot tea served in a kettle that looked like it came from the museum.

The menu for sliced meat.  So many to choose from, which one should I order?  There’s pork, beef, lamb from different parts of the animal, and different types of fish.

There’s also seafood….

Meatballs and pastes…

Dumplings….(oh God, I am spoilt for choice)…


And all other kinds of food that you normally put in a hotpot, plus beverages…

When it comes to ordering food, keeping a conservative mind is the principle for us. Because there’s just the two of us, we couldn’t possibly order too much.  So we asked the attendant for her recommendations.  Her recommendations were Escalope of shoulder butt (lean pork) and cherry duck (popular with customers).

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To avoid disappointments, make a reservation online before your trip and enjoy an exclusive set meal.

Wu Lao Hotpot – The Food

Here comes the pork.

Followed by the cherry duck.  These were presented so beautifully, I couldn’t bear to touch it.

And to top it off, Shiitake mushrooms which I would order in any hotpot restaurant.

Condiments, sauces and rice were available at the back of the restaurant, which anyone could have mistaken for a spa.

Our ‘ice-cream dumplings’, shaped like piles of poo.  The ice-cream dumpling was made up of eggs and milk and melts in the mouth, hence the name.

Our ice-cream tofu soup.  The ‘ice-cream dumpling’ was fragile and delicate.  We had to be extra careful while scooping through the contents of the pot.

Don’t underestimate the nutritional value of this pot of broth.  It is said to contain collagen and has beauty-enhancing properties.

Throughout our meal, the attendant came frequently to check on us, offering to top up our soup and other items.  With soft tones and their immaculately graceful mannerism, we felt very pampered.  Certainly, the flight attendants in some reputable airlines cannot even compare to this.

Our order was sufficient for both of us, because there were other edible contents in the soup base.  I even found a whole ginseng in the soup!

The meal ended off with this dessert of lime sorbet which was on the house and aids in digestion. As a result, we had the most comforting end to a very satisfactory meal!

The total bill came up to only 1032 NTD (about SGD$47) as we avoided ordering the more expensive items on the menu.  This meal is value for money considering the class, ambience and the quality of food served.

Discover Book Travel Recommends:

To avoid disappointments, make a reservation online before your trip and enjoy an exclusive set meal.

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Final Verdict

Wu Lao Guo (無老鍋) exceeded our expectations. The herbal broth was unique and of high quality.  Furthermore, the ambience and service was top class.   We will definitely recommend this restaurant to any one visiting Kaoshiung.  Likewise, this restaurant is also available at several locations in Taipei.  Make a reservation online and you get to enjoy an exclusive set meal

Join us next as we visit Shinkuchan Commercial District 新掘江 for some serious shopping!

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