10 Tips for Your Meal at The X Pot Fondue Restaurant in Chicago

Ready for an extraordinary dining experience? If you’re a fan of dipping meat in hot broth and hyperstimulating, you’re probably the target audience for The X Pot, an Asian-American restaurant that opened its first location inside the Venetian Hotel. in Las Vegas. The Chicago outpost officially opened earlier this month, bringing robots, casseroles of boiling broth, Chicago-style foodie displays, and mountains of Wagyu beef to a space inside. from the Roosevelt Collection in the South Loop.

We stopped by The X Pot to sample the Chef’s Tasting Menu, an expensive one-meal marathon that incorporates some of the restaurant’s most notable offerings (don’t worry, an a la carte menu is also available). If you’re hoping to try the Las Vegas-inspired dining experience for yourself, here are some tips to keep in mind between bites.

Be prepared to eat a lot of Wagyu beef

Be careful vegetarians, a meal at the X Pot is probably not for you. Like most fondue restaurants, the menu revolves around meat, especially thin slices of marbled Wagyu beef. The chef’s tasting menu includes the aptly named Wagyu Feast, featuring three different cuts of beef to dip in your broth, a Wagyu sandwich or a bibimbap, as well as meatballs and Wagyu dumplings. Heck, the salad that opens the meal is topped with a vinaigrette made with Wagyu juice. Even if you’re a red meat fanatic, that’s a bit much .—Zach Long

Photography: @vegaseatthis

Supplements to your meal add up quickly

Even after spending $ 128 per person on the Chef’s Tasting Menu, you’ll encounter additions throughout The X Pot menu that seem like they need to be included, but will actually increase your total bill. For example, a visit to the sauce bar (where you will find additional vegetables and various sauces that can be added to your broth) costs $ 4 per person. And the sashimi and Himalayan salt block grill loaded with extra Wagyu bites listed on the chef’s tasting menu adds an extra $ 28 per person to your bill. Be extra careful, especially if you’re trying to stay on a budget.ZL

Expect flashy presentations

True to its roots in Vegas, The X Pot puts on a show all the way through your meal, though that show mostly consists of clouds of dry ice, and plenty of them. A roast duck starter dish arrives nestled in a swan-shaped cracker surrounded by plumes of dry ice; if you go for the Wagyu feast later in the meal, the metal container that holds your wagyu pieces is also shrouded in clouds, which drift across the table while your server toast each piece on a plate of sizzling salt block .—Emma Krupp

Choose your broth carefully

There are a variety of broth options to choose from at The X Pot, including chicken, beef, mushroom and lobster broths. Think carefully about what you will be cooking in it, because in my experience some broths do not pair well with certain proteins. I opted for The X Pot Special Pot, a spice-infused beef-based broth that wasn’t ideal for cooking seafood (Emma’s Golden Chicken Pot worked best with lobster and shrimp. ). You may want to consult with your server to find out which broths work best with Wagyu, seafood, or lamb, or you may want to order a few broths to have options.ZL

X Pot robots
Photography: Courtesy of The X Pot

Temper your robot server expectations

Maybe one day we crack the code for robot servers, and maybe there will be a future in which industrious little automatons will carry food to diners on their own. That day had not yet arrived at The X Pot, where our robot servers – glitchy and prone to running around in chairs – had to be guided to the table by human employees, so that they looked more like a motorized cart with a blinking robotic face. . This could be the result of early growth difficulties for the restaurant (the Vegas bots seem to be working well), but don’t expect this futuristic feature to be as seamless as you might have imagined.THIS

Don’t be afraid to ask for cooking tips

With so many different types and cuts of meat and seafood on your table, it can be difficult to know how long you should cook each of the items in your pot of boiling broth. After all, you probably don’t want to bite into a barely cooked piece of shrimp or have to chew on an overcooked piece of steak. Our server was listing the cooking times each time he put down new dishes, but we had to ask him to repeat the information a few times – he was happy to help and we were able to avoid the overcooked protein.ZL

Try not to be distracted by the scenery

If all that dry ice doesn’t satisfy your appetite for the visual spectacle, the restaurant’s flashing decor, presented via a strip of screens along the walls, offers an array of animated graphics to keep you entertained throughout the meal (and potentially. on the verge of a migraine, if you are of a constitution as weak as me). These screens don’t have much of an interest in signaling a certain Vegas-y milieu, but I found myself staring at them, like zombies, between dishes of meat.THIS

Room X Pot 5D
Photography: @nathanmedia

Don’t expect to dine in Room 5D… yet.

Tucked away at the back of the restaurant is The X Pot’s much-touted 5D Experience room, an immersive dining room that incorporates 360-degree animated light projections and accompanying soundscapes into your meal (much like a ” Immersive Van Gogh “that you can dine inside). The 5D Experience, which will only be available for private parties, is not accepting reservations yet, so keep an eye out for the launch in the coming weeks.THIS

You might want to skip the seafood

It might be a matter of personal preference, but I wasn’t blown away by the seafood offerings at The X Pot. The quality of the shrimp, lobster, and scallops is just fine, but dipping a piece of lobster in a pot of steaming broth didn’t seem like the best way to cook it (even with the advice on cooking times provided by our server). If I have to splurge on seafood, I’d rather have it prepared by the experts instead of just hoping to get a piece of shrimp out of the pot in a mouth-watering state.ZL

Are you looking for a good deal? Try the Wagyu Feast.

OK, “good deal” is probably too strong a word for a place as expensive as The X Pot. But if you want to experience the best that the restaurant does without spending several hundred dollars, the Wagyu Feast is probably your best bet. It’s $ 98 for two ($ 188 for a party of four) and includes no less than eight different cuts of beef to dip in your broth (sold separately, between $ 6 and $ 26 per pot). You’ll miss out on many of the flashy dishes included in the chef’s tasting menu, but you can spend some extra dough on appetizers or a trip to the sauce bar.ZL

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