743 Bethel Rd.
Columbus, OH 43214
A brand new concept that has taken the place of the former Peking Hotpot located at this same address, the restaurant got a little bit of a facelift and some new ownership before opening as CoCo Hotpot, a Chinese speciality featuring boiling broths of different kinds where you can dip meat, veggies and seafoods to build you own meal. You walk away from this experience filled, and without breaking your bank, either. So it’s good to see more than one of these eateries thrive in Central Ohio.
The menu is largely built based on a series of raw veggies of your choosing, and you cook them yourself as part of the experience. You have the chance to build a sauce of your choosing from many ingredients too.
- Hot Pepper Broth: Probably one of the hotter options for the broth, this features a combination of many kinds of heat – Chinese chili oil, Sichuan peppercorns, and general heat pervades it and it’s in the wonderful vapor of the broth. You have a lot of natural heat pulled into each kind of meat.
- Thai Chili Broth: This broth is a little more mild but unmistakably has a rising heat in it. I don’t mind how it adds to the vegetables in particular, but without the sharper heat of those hot peppers. Maybe a little better if you don’t like spice.
- CoCo Combination: This plate is a catchall, and good for two or three people. There’s a mixture of beef, lamb, shrimp, mussels, squid, and fish. For veggies, you get a ramen cake, bok choy, carrots, mushrooms, cauliflower, broccoli and much more.
The restaurant has a pretty laid back attitude. While it’s going to have a need for a lot of active table service while the staff adjusts heat, bring water and hands back and forth ingredients for cooking, they are generally not bad at doing so. Sometimes during mealtime rushes they can be a little slower, and you feel that especially if you have something super hot.
Hotpot restaurants that succeed generally do so in a way that makes the experience as customization as possible. You cook your own food the way that you like cooking it. So getting to pick the kind of broth and the heat level, and the number of broths that you can enjoy at all once, these things come together to make for a really remarkable experience. Coco is a lot of fun.
- This is best by far with a group of people, two to five or six is best to a table.
- Also consider the hot broths if you like spicy, but keep in mind service can be a little slow on the mealtimes.
- There’s a menu of non-hotpot items too but these aren’t nearly as popular.