Friday, April 19, 2013

Restaurant Review! (HuHot Mongolian Grill - Springfield, MO)


Hello again friends.  Last night was my birthday and since I'm registered with many restaurant birthday clubs, I receive lots of free meals, buy one get one deals, etc via email on my birthday.  One of those places, and one of my favorite places to eat, is HuHot Mongolian Grill (http://www.huhot.com/Locations/Missouri/Springfield). So last night I decided I would take some pictures and do a Restaurant Review today.  Now for those of you not familiar with a Mongolian Grill, I will briefly explain the concept. In the simplest of forms, you pick out the food you want to eat, in raw form, the sauce you want and you hand the plate or bowl of food to a guy that then cooks it on a grill in front of you.  It's quite similar to Hibachi, where the food is cooked at your table, but with Mongolian Grill there's not a grill at each table.

Most of the time a Mongolian Grill is included in Chinese buffets and offers a limited selection of proteins, veggies, and sauces to choose from.  However, at HuHot, the Mongolian Grill is pretty much all they do so it's just amazing.  Imagine a huge buffet line of nothing but raw meats (beef, chicken, pork, sausage, seafood, etc), noodles, a large variety of uncooked vegetables (things like broccoli, water chestnuts, onions, etc), and 12 signature sauces. Now imagine a giant round grill with anywhere from 2 to 4 cooks walking around it grilling as many as 9 plates of food at a time (or just see the pictures to the right, click to enlarge - sorry, I didn't take any of the food line).

The selection of food is enormous so you can have a different plate of food every time you go back for more.  Also, there are 12 signature sauces (plus seasonal sauces and things like garlic oil and garlic broth) to choose from which in my opinion is really what makes the food so good.  You add 5-6 ladles of sauce to your plate of food so you can mix sauces and come up with delicious combinations. I've included the sauces section from their menu to the right so you can look for yourself.  Click the picture to enlarge it.  The sauces are heat rated using little flames to tell you how spicy they are and they range from no flames all the way to 5 flames.  Right now, however, they have a seasonal sauce called Khan's Revenge that is rated at 7 flames and it's well deserving of those 7 flames.

The plate of food in the picture to the right is the last plate of food I had last night (I was pretty full already which is why there's not much on the plate). On the plate there's beef, sausage, yakisoba noodles, onions, broccoli, and pineapple.  My favorite sauce is the Mean Bean Garlic Sauce (2 flames) and typically I will use 4 ladles of Mean Bean Garlic Sauce and 2 ladles of Garlic Oil. With this last plate, however, I went with 3 ladles of Mean Bean Garlic Sauce, 1 ladle of the 7 flame Khan's Revenge, and 1 ladle of Garlic Oil.  My usual combination of sauces makes the dish nice and spicy but not too spicy.  This newest combination set my mouth on fire... and that was just with 1 ladle of Khan's Revenge.  I can't imagine someone using 4-6 ladles of nothing but Khan's Revenge .... but I'm sure someone has.

Final verdict:
 As far as the food is concerned the selection is amazing and the taste is absolutely wonderful so I would recommend this place to anyone just based on that alone.  However, it's definitely not a budget friendly place if you're looking for somewhere cheap to eat.  That's not to say that it's not worth the price because it's worth every penny you spend but for 2 people, just the grill meal and a drink each will set you back $30 plus tax and tip.  It's certainly cheaper than most Japanese Hibachi restaurants but it's a bit more expensive than your standard Chinese Take-Out Restaurant.

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