Sunday, September 04, 2011

Fresh Juice Shop 和太


Fresh Juice Shop is a small hot pot bar in East Vancouver. It's supposed to feature Japanese style hot pot, but there is nothing Japanese about it. The owner is Chinese and the place serves regular Chinese rice instead of the sticky Japanese variety. I've read negative comments about the service, but I had no problems at all and actually found the owner quite friendly. She was very honest too, and told us that it didn't really matter what numbers we put on the order form because she would bring us an appropriate amount based on her judgement. She said she didn't want the food to go to waste, and that we were welcome to order more when we were done. We used TastyGo vouchers and the deal included a drink and a choice of sauce per person. Some people might complain about not having enough sauce, but I thought the amount we were given was more than enough. The 2 types of sauce were spicy and satay. The spicy one was a bit too much for me, but I tried a little and it was very intense in flavour. The satay was also very tasty, though not as overwhelming.


We got a really small pot for 4 people. The heat wasn't that strong either, so we had a hard time trying to get all our food cooked in the beginning. The cabbage shreds in the soup were the only indication throughout the entire meal that this was Japanese style hot pot. Unfortunately the soup base was so weak that the food just tasted like it had been boiled in water.


There were 4 types of meat: beef, chicken, pork and lamb. The rest were vegetables like lettuce, spinach, tomatoes, mushrooms, taro, yam and tofu. There were also rice cakes, udon, instant noodles and plain rice. I had expected the rice cakes to be bouncy and chewy like Korean rice cakes, but they were very starchy and not sticky at all. The greens were limp and most of the other vegetables were not very fresh. The meats were decent, but they were cut so thinly that they all tasted rather similar.


We could choose from red/green teas and slushies for our complimentary drinks. We all opted for slushies because we thought it would be a safe choice. Our drinks tasted very artificial which is kind of ironic since the place is called Fresh Juice Shop. It didn't come as a surprise though because I had already read about the horrible drinks in several reviews, and had even confirmed with the owner that artificial powders and liquids were used in making the slushies. It was just that... I didn't expect the drinks to taste even worse than what I was prepared for. The taro slushie was particularly bad because there was no taro flavour at all (even the artificial kind), and it just tasted like sweet ice. The mango slushie was slightly better, but it didn't even taste like mango.


Overall it wasn't an impressive experience, but it was good value for the price we paid because it was all you can eat with unlimited meat. I think we must have ordered at least 16 dishes of meat. Service was ok and the food came really quickly, but the quality of the food and the drinks in particular was disappointing.

Fresh Juice Shop Hot Pot Bar 和太日式火鍋吧 on Urbanspoon
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4 comments:

Peter on September 07, 2011 12:18 pm said...

I don't think you'll find a taro slushy in a hot pot place anywhere in Japan, haha!

krispymilk on September 07, 2011 2:37 pm said...

Nope... Like I said, the only thing slightly Japanese about it was the cabbage shreds in the soup.

Buddha Girl on September 16, 2011 2:59 am said...

LOL! This place is owned Sing Kee, about a block or two down. Funny how on their hot pot menu, they said "posh" thinking that's the representative word for Japanese hot pot...people often mixed up and thought this place is owned by Posh.

krispymilk on September 16, 2011 12:25 pm said...

OH! Is that why there is the word "posh" on the menu?! But I never once thought the place is associated with Posh because the quality difference is just too big.

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