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With the mercury remaining below freezing today, Gothamist thought it might be a good time to mention one of our favorite foods of the winter - hot pot. While there are many different types of hot pot, we tend to gravitate towards Szechuan hot pot to put a little fire in our belly. For those unfamiliar with hot pot, it's much like fondue in the way you dip various food items into a simmering pot. With Szechuan hot pot, one cooks various meats and vegetables in a boiling soup.

When we have Szechuan hot pot, Gothamist gets the split pot with half mild broth and half spicy broth. Despite our love for the spice, sometimes it just gets too hot. Once the pot starts boiling, preparing your food is very easy. Just pick up the food, cook it in the pot, remove and eat.

While we're sure there are many restaurants with hot pot out there, Gothamist has been frequenting Grand Sichuan near the Manhattan Bridge as of late. We've also been to Wu Liang Ye in Murray Hill in the past. If you're going for hot pot, we recommend getting beef, fish balls, scallops, spinach, Chinese cabbage, and any type of noodle. Grand Sichuan has several dipping sauces, but the most popular are the hot/spicy sauce and the garlic sauce, both for good reason.

A filling meal will run you about $15-20 per person depending on how much you order and both restaurants are accommodating of large groups if you call ahead.

Photo by Tien Mao