Annandale, VA 22003
There are very few restaurant chains that I would think about writing a blog post for (I've been meaning to write about Five Guys for a while now) simply because I don't really enjoy the food from many chains. Bon Chon Chicken is a welcome exception. Bon Chon is a Korean friend chicken chain that has migrated to the United States with a few locations on the east coast that are mainly around New York City. Over the years, I've heard quite a bit about the goodness that is Korean fried chicken (heck, even David Chang at MomoFuku Noodle Bar offers a version of it though you have to order it 24 hours in advance) and combined with my extreme penchant for fried chicken, I was really looking forward to lunch at Bon Chon.
I had to ask the waitress what to order since the menu is a little confusing. On the right side, it looks like they're offering chicken for groups and on top of the left side of the menu, it seems that you have a choice of a large and medium order of chicken. You can choose from all wings, all drumsticks or a mix of both. I chose to order a mix of both (8 wings, 3 drumsticks) and to have a mix of both the soy-garlic sauce and the hot sauce. The portion size seemed really large to me and I was expecting to take some home. They brought the chicken out with a side of pickled radish chunks which should have been an indication to me about what they meant as a hot sauce. I'm not 100% clear on how Korean fried chicken is different from the United States variety but the cooking process doesn't exactly sync up with how Americans might view "fast" food. My brief understanding is that the chicken is lightly battered in a very fine flour and then deep fried for about 10 min. It is then taken out and allowed to cool and for the grease to run off. It is then deep fried again, allowed to cool again and then the sauce is applied. This whole process takes about 35 minutes (which they do warn you about) so I would suggest calling ahead of time with your order.
I consider myself a fried chicken junkie and I've been meaning to cook up some fried chicken so I could make a post for Food We Love. Bon Chon's fried chicken lives up to the hype and I would gladly keep going back there for my fried chicken fixes.