Worth the queue and worth the hype.
I’ll share some pro tips at the end of this post if you’re looking to secure yourself a seat in the restaurant.
How it works here is, you arrive the restaurant, take a number and while waiting for your number to be called you can grab a seat and have some of their free-flow snacks from popcorn, ice-cream and crackers or even get a manicure.
Once your number is called, a staff will usher you into the restaurant and then you can start ordering your food through their iPad. They also have staff on standby to assist you in case you need recommendation. Thumbs up to the staff on duty who gave good suggestions as it was my first time here.
First step: choose your soup base.
You can either have one pot with a single flavour or one pot with double flavour or one pot with four flavours. The latter is the most popular option as I believe they are the ones who made this four chamber pot popular.
Clockwise: mushroom, tomato, curry laksa, mala.
My top two favourite would be the tomato and curry laksa due to personal preferences but if you must know they’re famous for their mala flavour and you can even choose the level of spiciness or numbness you want the soup to be. Also need to mention, curry laksa is a special flavour only available in Malaysia.
Step two: choose your meat and vegetable.
They’ve got all sorts of meat available and when I mean all sorts I mean things like liver etc and of course everyone’s favourite and hotpot essential, pork and beef slices. There’s also a number of homemade meatballs available and they’re all pretty good!
Best part is, it comes in two sizes – half portion or full portion and they don’t charge your more when you order a half portion unlike 99% of eateries here. For example, if the full portion of a plate of beef slice is RM20, the half portion would be RM10 and this applies for all their meat, vegetable, etc.
In the picture above, it’s all half portion and it’s perfect if you want to order a larger variety or if you only have 2-3 people dining with you.
Step 3: enjoy your food.
Once you’ve finish ordering on the iPad, click the cart icon and just wait for your food to be served!
This is their signature tomato soup which comes with a serving of their in-house special of minced beef and vegetable (name which I’ve forgotten). The staff will prepare this in front of you when you order their tomato soup and it is honestly DELICIOUS! Tasted like minestrone soup to me and I loved it so much I had 2 servings!!
Don’t forget to order their handmade noodle which comes with a complimentary 30 seconds dance. When you order their noodle, this professional noodle maker will hand pull the noodle in front of you.
They also advise for the noodle to be consumer towards the end of the meal in order to not spoil the taste of your soup base but it is totally up to you to follow or not.
The noodle on its own goes very well with either the tomato or curry laksa soup and it is nice and tender, very similar to hand-pulled pan mee noodle texture.
Overall I would definitely return again and I’d rate it a 10/10 for their service is also on point and their staff takes genuine care of every guests despite their hectic restaurant situation.
TIPS ON HOW TO GET A SEAT IN HAI DI LAO:
- if you want to dine during lunch on a weekend it is safe to say you should arrive the outlet by 9.00am to get a number, any earlier would be better and 9.30am would be cutting it close but you can still try your luck
- they start giving out number at 10.00am for lunch session and usually run out of numbers by 10.05am. only 74 numbers are available
- the first seating would be at 10.30am, they usually start seating those from 1-10 within the first 10-15 minutes and subsequently would depend on seating availability in the restaurant, hence there isn’t a guarantee what time you’ll be able to enter the restaurant
- if you arrive by 8.30am you’d be the first 10 in queue and queue time would be 2 hours till the opening of 10.30am, of which you’re able to get inside the restaurant in the shortest amount of time. any later than 8.45am will result in a longer time in queue
- for those thinking of dining during dinner hours, they start giving out numbers at 3.00pm but the queue will start forming by 1.30pm and will then again depend on how lucky you are in getting a number
Happy eating! I can’t wait to be back for more soon!