On November 12th, Ben Pao (a Lettuce Entertain You Restaurant) and yours truly will host a Hot Pot Dinner, kicking off the Beijing portion of their Regional Dinner Series. The Hot Pot technique is traced to Northern China, circa 400 A.D., where Mongolian soldiers upended their helmets, filled them with water, held them over a fire and dunked hunks of meat in them to boil. The tradition of "wei-lu", meaning to circle the pot, spread throughout the country and became synonymous with communal feasts.
The evening begins at 6:00 p.m. with a cocktail reception and Beijing-inspired passed appetizers like shredded star anise-braised pork with homemade lotus buns, duck mu-shu rolls, and sesame-crusted garlic tofu. The Hot Pot Dinner will follow with wines that I have chosen that pair perfectly with the vast flavors of hot pot. The evening ends with guests dipping into a chocolate fondue, hot pot style. Included in the evening are raffles to win a hot pot and all of the sauces for your home enjoyment, as well as gift certificates good for November and December - the months that Beijing Specials are offered in the Restaurant.
The Hot Pot Dinner experience is priced at $55.00 all inclusive. This style of dining is perfect for groups, as 5-6 guests are seated around the Hot Pot. For more information regarding the style of dining and to make your reservation call Ben Pao at 312-222-1888
Here are photos from the Beer and Sichuan dinner that we did at Ben Pao this past summer.
Guest speakers Jim Ebel from Two Brothers Brewing Co & Beer Expert Wes Phillips with Ed Culleeney from Ben Pao
Sichuan Style spicy lake perch with Allagash White
Ma Po Doufu with Two Brothers Domaine Dupage French Country Style Ale
Dry Chili Chicken with Left Hand Brewing Co. Juju Ginger
Twice Cooked Pork Belly with Brasserie Dupont Foret Organic Saison
Chengdu Ice Cream Sandwich with Tyranena Brewing Co Rocky's Revenge Bourbon Brown Ale