Korean-style fried chicken. Say no more, I'm in and I can't wait to taste for myself. I already have a special place in my heart for spicy Korean food and with football season fast approaching (it's preseason... time to start the count down), I can smell phantom wings in the air.
BonChon, which originated in New Jersey (bonus points already), focuses on Korean street food, and the star of the show is fried chicken. They just opened a new restaurant in Arlington so I went on a Friday afternoon for lunch to check it out.
By noon, the place was packed and there were no tables open. And it's clear as to why -- it was delicious.
The menu clearly states that it could take up to 35 minutes to cook the chicken, so we decided to order some appetizers (too bad the table next us didn't read ahead, the guy was tweaking out and asking our waiter 'how much longer' every 5 minutes. It was quite annoying and as a former waitress, I can tell you now that it is NOT SMART to annoy a waiter or the kitchen. Sure fire way to have your food messed with).
Anyhoo, we ordered the seasoned fries with spicy mayo dipping sauce and the pork buns. The seasoned fries were yummy, topped with light parmesan cheese and highly addictive with the spicy mayo (tasted like a blend of Sririacha and mayo).
The pork buns were also fantastic. The light and doughy bun with the crunchy pork belly and sweet soy sauce just melted in your mouth.
At BonChon, you choose your type of chicken (wings, strips or drum sticks) and then your sauce -- soy garlic or hot. I was tempted to just order the hot, but I decided to be adventurous and get the medium sized order of "half and half," and give soy garlic sauce a chance.
Wow, good thing I did. The hot was HOT (and I can handle heat). It was fantastic, but be clear, they are not messing around with hot. My lips were on fire.... and I loved it. The soy garlic chicken wings were a nice sweet way to temper the heat of the hot wings. And the best part about the fried chicken was the skin... it was so crunchy and crisp, it crackled when you ate it. It almost was carmelized and it was unbelieveably good.
So there it is...
Run, don't walk to get your Korean fried chicken at Bonchon. Get the half and half mix to create the perfect heat and sweet balance. And enjoy with a beer!