MORE Magazine is pleased to introduce you to a popular Chinese restaurant this month. Panggelia serves up big pots of tasty meat and seafood. There are four locations in Hangzhou and over twenty locations nationwide. We visited the one in Hangzhou Tower on a weekday noon, and there was a long line-up of customers to get into the packed restaurant.
On one side of the menu are twelve different pots to choose from, such as Shrimp Pot, Hairy Crab Pot (seasonal availability), Pork Rib Pot, etc. The menu is only in Chinese, but drawings next to each pot give you an idea ofwhat it is. You can select extras to include, such as shrimp or niangao, and you can choose four different levels of spiciness from not spicy to very spicy. On the other side of the menu are cold appetizer dishes and drinks.
We added pork ribs to the signature Meat Crab Pot (肉蟹煲 88RMBfor small portion),and it was a fantastic combination of crab and lip-smacking soft meaty ribs.The medium spice level was appetizing without causing discomfort, backed by sweetness in the sauce.
The Black Fish Pot (黑鱼煲78RMB) had sliced fish, pickled vegetables and tongue numbing Sichuan peppercorns.The Frog Pot (牛蛙煲78RMBfor small portion) was equal parts frog and chicken feet. The Bone Marrow Pot(筒骨煲78RMB)came with straws for you to suck out the marrow.
One small pot is enough to feed two people. The ingredients are all natural,starting with live seafood and meat that is fresh, never frozen.
At the bottom of each pot you’ll find a starch component to balance the meal. The Meat Crab Pot and the Frog Pot had niangao and potatoes while the Black Fish Pot had soft, chewy sweet potato noodles.If you can’t finish everything, go ahead and take it home for some great leftovers. The noodles, potatoes or niangaowill act like sponges,soaking up the sauce to become extra tasty.
To avoid line-ups, it’s best to skip the busiest lunch and dinner time hours of 11am-1pm and 5-7pm. Parking available at the Hangzhou Towers parking lot.