HuHot is everything good and bad about chain restaurants 

click to enlarge RILEY BRATZLER
  • Riley Bratzler
Yes, we rarely review chains here, but I’m compelled to after a visit for my nephew’s birthday, because HuHot offers a good study of what chains (this one an independently owned franchise) do well that many indies could take note of. As well, we find notable flaws. To the good, first: A roaming balloon artist twists us a stellar bday crown; servers are speedy and accommodating; it’s only $14.99 for all-you-can-eat stir fry; that includes the show of watching it sizzled on a giant flat top by charismatic cooks; as later noted by co-workers, kids love building their own bowls and there’s allergy-friendly and humanely raised meats (the signs say); my creations are delicious, from a black Thai-peanut-sauce-based chicken-multi-veggie concoction to a super-scorching (habanero) Khan’s Revenge-sauce-based pork-pollock-multi-veggie mix. Bonus: a thoughtful, free S’mores bday dessert over a mini grill. Now the bad: If you have a bloody nose, let your co-workers cover your section instead of breezing around with a large tissue wad protruding from a nostril. Also don’t stack chairs atop tables all around us as we finish eating (read: Don’t tell us in this not-too-subtle way to GTFO because the clock just hit 9).

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