Top 10 Hot and Sour Soup
Find out where to feast on this feisty, fiery soup.
Originally from China's Sichuan province, the iconic hot and sour soup has long been favored by soup lovers everywhere for its tangy soup base and fiery flavors. Though it adopts a simple, self-explanatory name, there’s more to this Chinese delicacy than just being tart and spicy.
To guide us in our search for the best of its kind in the metro, we considered a number of things. To give the soup a deeper complexity than just being hot and sour, it needs to be complimented by other flavors. Its heat, like a tempestuous lover, should leave you hot, bothered and wanting more. The spiciness should also be consistent, not hot one moment, tepid the next. The best ones are those with a slightly thickened soup base, which helps cut down the grease and aids digestion, and with ingredients like tofu, mushroom, wood fungus, egg whites and meat (either pork or seafood) to create a melange of textures. What makes the soup either simple or sophisticated would be up to the chef.
A great hot and sour soup, we imagine, would be one that reminds us of a great kiss with each spoonful, and how it leaves a warm, tingling sensation in the mouth. Lastly, it needs to leave a lasting impression, one we can fondly remember long after the soup has been consumed. Here, our top 10.
Photos by Anson Yu