Can San Diego support more hot pot? A branch of Beijing-born Shangcheng Lameizi is still on the way but the latest Chinese import to land in Kearny Mesa is Liuyishou Hotpot; founded in mainland China in 2000, it now operates a franchise of over 1,000 locations around the world. The company expanded to North America in 2014, and operates outposts in Canada, New York City, Boston, Seattle, and the Bay Area. Its first foray into Southern California will land on Convoy Street behind China Max, where it takes the reins from another recently-shuttered hot pot restaurant called ShuDao. A rep for the restaurant told Eater that the opening is currently scheduled for the end of November or beginning of December.
Named after its founder “one-armed Liu,” who lost a hand in an accident, and the Chinese phrase for thumbs-up, “yishou”, Liuyishou specializes in Chongqing-style hot pot, which is known for a numbing and spicy broth made with chilies and Sichuan peppercorns. In addition to the traditional base made with beef tallow, diners can choose from a variety of other soups, including mixed mushroom, tomato, and coconut chicken. An assortment of raw meat, seafood, and vegetables is cooked in the boiling broth, including sliced Angus beer, pork intestines, whole shrimp, with the thinly-sliced meat presented on an Instagram-friendly wooden wheel that surrounds each pot. The eatery also offers a buffet-style condiment and snack bar, which offers everything from edamame and leek flower sauce to mushroom paste and fresh fruit.