Philadelphia's Chinatown has seen a flurry of activity of late. Looks like hot pot is about to become a Thing:
Xun Yu Si Kao took over for the short-lived Sea Bar at 140 N. 10th St., next to Ting Wong. Specialty is boldly spiced seafood hot pot; menu also includes more Americanized Chinese dishes. Lovely interior includes tile walls and nifty nautical-ish chandeliers fashioned out of heavy ropes. Low-priced beers – $3 Buds, $3.50 Heinekens and Coronas, anyone?
Little Lodge, specializing in the northern Chinese hot pot-like street cuisine called mala tang, is under construction at 927 Race St., the former homes of Nan Zhou Hand-Drawn Noodle House and Happy Noodle House. Opening date is TBA, as it's shrouded in newspaper-covered windows and occupied by workers who decline comment.
A branch of the Las Vegas hit Chubby Cattle, whose specialties include Mongolian and Chinese hot pots (with food sent out on a conveyor belt), will open in "September or at the latest, beginning of October" at 146 N. 10th St., says Joe Muscaglione, a native New Jerseyan who is helping with the opening.
To cool the fires, N2 Sweet Cafe – whose specialty is liquid-nitrogen ice cream – is on the way to 125 N. 11th St., the corner of 11th and Cherry Streets.
Rising Tide's 14-year run at 937 Race St. came to a close last month. Restaurant phone was disconnected, as was the owner's cell phone. The liquor license is in safekeeping, which suggests that a new operator is on the way. For many years, the location housed China Castle.
And new on the horizon is Kuriimii, a soft-serve jawn (as the sign reads), which will fill the storefront formerly occupied by Crabby Cafe at 1023 Cherry St. It's across from Bonchon. Owner Michael Ho's twist will be Japanese-inspired flavors such as matcha, ube, black sesame, and avocado. He's aiming at early to mid-August.