I've been going to Jazz Cat ever since they opened their first location in Alhambra, when it used to be next to Noodle World on Valley. They closed that location a few years ago, to open a larger location in San Gabriel. Now, they have a few more locations spread out. I do wish, that they kept the original style of when they first opened in Alhambra. The presentation was different from the tradition hot pot we are used to, it was actually pretty. And, they served this seafood/pork paste in a bamboo tube. Now, it's just a simple plate of protein with the veggies.
I've gotten sick this week, and have been trying to recover, but this weather has been kicking my ass. Los Angeles is finally cold, and here goes everyone complaining now that they missed the sun. Are you kidding me? It was like yesterday when the whole population of Los Angeles were crying for summer to be over. And now it is. So get used to the it. The cold mornings where getting out of bed is like traveling through a blizzard storm. Those runny nose days and green snots.
Luckily, I am not that sick. I am smart enough to force myself to drink fluids all day. Even though I had wine, rum and beer (don't ask), I am still somewhat well rested enough to get through the day. John was nice enough to suggest eating out so I didn't have to cook. But picking a place is always the hardest part. Why is that? No it's not a girl thing. If I had a choice, it will be buffets, burgers, tacos and fried chicken. I have the worst, biggest appetite you will ever meet. And it's scary.
But, Jazz Cat is a place I ALWAYS want to eat at. Raw marbled meat, cooked gently in hot seasoned broth, dipped in Satay sauce, and then eaten with a big hunk of rice. We always order the same thing.
You get the option of ordering it regular, or the "T-rex" version which has more meat, but less vegetables. MORE meat all the way. I didn't order this spicy because I really love the flavors of the soup. If I wanted something spicy I would probably try their other soup bases, and they have a lot to pick from.
I've had many hot pot places all over SGV. And there isn't any place I would rather eat at than Jazz Cat. The meats are extremely tender and delicious. It's not all you can eat, but I don't really care for a place like that when I get full from this. For a little under $14 before tax and tip, you can get good quality beef with a delicious soup base. John cooks his eggs over-easy while I like my eggs to be soft boiled.
What I do first: Throw in all my vegetables. I like my veggies extra cooked in the sauce as it also releases flavor into the soup. Once the soup starts to boil, grab your beef, give it a quick swish, dip it in your satay sauce, and eat it with the rice. I can't even begin to tell you how happy it makes me to have good hot pot. Screw fat kid eats cake, it's fat kid eats rice. My body felt extremely soothed, warm, and ready to sleep which was much needed.
Oh and guess what? The service here is always amazing. Unless you are just a total douche bag, then no. But every time we come, the servers are always coming by and checking if everything was okay and if we needed anything. Like, if we needed anything? Who asks that in SGV? not a living soul. It's more like, don't bother me unless you want a refill or your bill. Not here, service gets 100% from me.
I just can't give up rice. Ever. I think I might die, like, really. I have a large potato sack worth of Jasmine rice because I just love eating it with my dishes. The whole experience just wouldn't be the same. There's a phrase I grew up with called "Pah fan" which literally mean dig rice. So when we eat rice, we would pah fan, because we are literally digging the rice into our mouths. Funny huh? That explains why I eat a lot of rice since my parents would always tell us that.
If my brother David sees this post, he would be pissed that we didn't invite him... BUT with that said, I am totally down to come back again!
See you soon Jazz Cat.
121 E Valley Blvd, San Gabriel, CA 91776
Happy swishy swooshy.