5293 Prospect Road, Suite C, West San Jose
Photo: venus p./Yelp
First up is Pop Pot, a Taiwanese restaurant offering hot pot and bubble tea. Choose between a variety of hot pot options, including the Popcorn Chicken Pot, which includes napa cabbage, enoki mushrooms, fish balls, meatballs, quail eggs, iced tofu, crab sticks, tempura and, of course, popcorn chicken.
Other options include the House Special Pot, made with stinky tofu, napa cabbage, pork intestine, clams, leeks, tomato, meatballs, tempura, corn and stuffed fish balls.
Yelpers are still warming up to Pop Pot, which currently holds three stars out of 31 reviews.
Prakriti G., who reviewed the eatery on Sept. 9, wrote, "One of the most satisfying personal pot places in NorCal! My favorite order is the Popcorn Chicken hot pot, which is really unique to this personal pot shop. Their House hot pot is delicious as well with their stinky tofu and blood rice cakes! There's also free black/green tea or winter melon juice for lunch."
Diana S. noted, "Tasty hot pot! I love the variety of soup! I had the lemongrass Thai favor. It was delicious and the portions are a lot compared to others."
Pop Pot is open from 11:30 a.m.-10 p.m. daily.
Goku Korean BBQ & Hot Pot
3085 Meridian Ave., Cambrian Park
Photo: jason l./Yelp
Goku Korean BBQ & Hot Pot, located between a Dollar Tree and a Banfield Pet Hospital, says it offers an "Asian fusion dining experience that is truly unforgettable."
Customers can choose from nine different soup bases, including beef bulgogi, creamy milk, healthy herb, Japanese miso, Korean kimchi, Taiwanese spicy and more.
Protein options include beef tripe, beef meatballs, clam, fish meatballs, imitation crab, kamaboko, mini sausages, mussels, pork blood, seafood dumplings, shrimp and sliced chicken. (Explore the full menu here.)
Goku Korean BBQ & Hot Pot is off to a promising start with four stars out of 145 reviews on Yelp.
Yelper Celine L., who reviewed it on Sept. 8, wrote, "I ordered the tom yum soup, which is very good and tangy. I was also interested in the tonkatsu ramen broth, but I opted for a traditional hot pot flavor. The fish tofu and fish balls were so good! We ordered several rounds of those."
Golden H. noted, "This place has a huge selection of meats, seafood, veggies and sides to choose from. Not only that, but they have a giant sauce bar with a variety of different sauces and a salad and fruit bar as well! Go ahead and name another hot pot place that offers a fruit and salad bar, I'll wait."
Goku Korean BBQ & Hot Pot is open from 11 a.m.-11 p.m. from Monday-Thursday and Sunday and 11 a.m.-midnight on Friday and Saturday.
Little Lamb Hot Pot & BBQ
979 Story Road, Suite 7030, East San Jose
Photo: dean c./Yelp
Last but not least is Little Lamb Hot Pot & BBQ, a Chinese chain. According to its website, the restaurant group has over 600 locations in major cities across the globe. The chain has also won several awards and honors, including "China's Top 10 Hot Pot Brand," "Five-Star Hot Pot Demonstration Enterprise" and "Top 10 National Restaurant Chain."
Diners can expect broth options like herbal, spicy, tomato, mushroom, kimchi and seafood. Protein add-ons include premium lamb shoulder, fatty beef, chicken breast and more.
Little Lamb Hot Pot & BBQ currently holds 3.5 stars out of 68 reviews on Yelp, indicating a mixed reception.
Yelper Ken H., who visited the restaurant on Sept. 2, wrote, "Amazing! We love hot pot and this is the best we've found in the Bay Area. The sauce station is amazing, the barbecue lamb truly outstanding and the ingredients for hot pot dipping are fresh and nicely presented."
Wendy D. noted, "Just be a bit wary when you order the Sichuan broth for the hot pot because it might end up with an entire bowl of peppers! Other than that this was a standard cook-your-own hot pot establishment where you are able to pick and choose which types of meats, vegetables and noodles."
Little Lamb Hot Pot & BBQ is open from 11:45 a.m.-2:30 p.m. and 5:45-9:30 p.m. from Monday-Thursday, 11:45 a.m.-2:30 p.m. and 5:45-10 p.m. on Friday and 11:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m. and 5:30-10 p.m. on weekends.