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Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Jazz Cat Restaurant - San Gabriel

I was sad when the original Jazz Cat Cafe - Alhambra stopped letting us cook hot pots table side. Then, they stopped serving hot pots at all. Then, they closed down completely.

Because they had opened a new location in San Gabriel.


Jazz Cat Cafe - San Gabriel 1

The grand opening was in late October. I tipped off Tony of SinoSoul so he could be my guinea pig since he likes to be first. Ha! He complained about the long wait and disproportionately high counter to chair difference at the bar.

But for lunch time with Gourmet Pigs, we only had a slight wait and were seated in a booth. That makes all the difference in my enjoyment of Jazz Cat.

I was so excited that I went out the door without my camera. Oh noes! Luckily, Gourmet Pigs had hers and shared, so her camera, but I took the photos. :P

Jazz Cat Cafe - San Gabriel 2

The new interior is a little swankier. Jazz Cat now uses induction cookers instead of the flaming gels. The induction cooker's controls are on the side so you can adjust the heat. On the down side, they're set about a foot from the edge of the table so you have to lean in to cook.

Also gone is the extensive drinks menu with just a few soft drinks and iced tea. They've added beer and wine in its place. I wanted milk tea! But settled for a $3 iced green tea. Free refills though!

Jazz Cat Cafe - San Gabriel 3

The low price point is now $13.95 for a hot pot, up from $10.95 at the old location. You still have a choice of thinly sliced beef, chicken, or pork. And the hot pots still come with a generous side of vegetables, rice, and dipping sauce.

Jazz Cat Cafe - San Gabriel 4

I almost always choose beef.

Jazz Cat Cafe - San Gabriel 5

My favorite broth - Thai spicy. A little bit of chili sauce, buttery notes, with a hint of lemongrass maybe? I asked the waiter once at the old location and he said it was the chef's secret recipe.

Jazz Cat Cafe - San Gabriel 6

Gourmet Pigs ordered the Chinese herbal broth. The herbs were kept in a little packet so they didn't float all over the broth. That packet soaked up so much liquid that the waiter came back and refilled her pot with more water.

Jazz Cat Cafe - San Gabriel 7

The scary cat pictures have been moved to the new location too.

Jazz Cat Cafe - San Gabriel 8

See my original Jazz Cat Cafe - Alhambra post for the other broths. I like original, Thai spicy, and Japanese curry. Sukiyaki is too sweet and Korean kimchi is nothing unusual. They've kept all the flavors, just the location has changed. The parking in the new strip mall is just as bad and the waits are just as long. Plan on waiting at least an hour during peak times. Ideally, go with three or four people so you can get a booth.

Who else ate at Jazz Cat?
Tony of SinoSoul visited shortly after the grand opening.

Other hot pot and shabu shabu restaurants:
Cocary Shabu Shabu BBQ - Monterey Park
Happy Sheep Cafe - Rowland Heights
Happy Sheep Cafe Shabu & Grill - San Gabriel
Monland Hot Pot City - San Gabriel
Shin-Sen-Gumi Yakitori-Shabu Shabu - Monterey Park

Jazz Cat Restaurant
121 E. Valley Blvd.
San Gabriel, CA 91776
Sunday to Thursday 11 a.m. to midnight
Friday and Saturday 11 a.m. to 12:30 a.m.

1 year ago today, nuoc mam cham (Vietnamese fish dipping sauce).
2 years ago today, kimchee pajeon (Korean pickled napa cabbage pancake).


  1. I tried Jazz cat this past weekend and I have to say the it is sooooo much better then the old jazz cat. The japanese miso broth is my fave =)

  2. Sounds awesome! Maybe I'll visit someday :). After our last experience we were not too happy, but we were always happy with their hot pots though. Great to hear that the tea has unlimited refills!

  3. i definitely want to go someday! i just have to get my butt out of orange county with some friends first though! :D

  4. Hi,
    Your photography is definitely getting better! I also want to tell you I really enjoy your blog. I read it almost everyday--and then I click on a couple of Google adwords just to show my support :) Keep posting girlie!

  5. I'm sad...the closest yummy hot pot that I can get in Sacramento is Little Lamb in Union City (which is almost 2 hours away). I like Southern Cali but the more I think about decent Asian food...the more I want to move there!

    Thanks for always providing such wonderful pictures & details; you're awesome!

  6. Miki,
    I kinda miss the old Jazz Cat though.

    Yeah, after they stopped serving hot pot, I stopped going.

    Same here! I don't go down to OC as often as I used to.

    Inside Avenue,
    Aww thanks! Although, these pics were taken with my friend's camera. :P And thank you so much for clicking on some ads. That's so nice of you to think of me!

    Haha. What is up with all these lamb and sheep names for hot pot? I admit, it's hard to think of moving elsewhere when I think of the food I'll be missing out on.


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