Wednesday, February 4, 2015

BonChon Chicken Food Review

BonChon Chicken Special... only $8.99

Less than six months ago, I was pretty much "in the dark" when it came to Korean fried chicken. Sure I'd tried it; but little did I know... I was about to become its BIGGEST fan. Proof? You want proof? Ladies and gents, I give you BonChon Chicken, quite possibly the best, most affordable fried chicken in the world (with all due respect to the Colonel.)

I loved MoMo Chicken & Grill in Bethesda, but BonChon takes the cake (er... bird) based on faster preparation, unrivaled customer service and some of the crispiest French fries I've ever had. There's a reason why BonChon has become a cult-favorite in this town... They do what they do, better than anyone else.

Details, details: Bottled juice ($2) comes with a glass

I had a very small window of time to get in and out; so I arrived promptly at 11:30 AM, and sure enough they were ready and waiting for their first customer of the day (I love being first, don't you?) I asked for someplace quiet (keeping in mind, I was the only one there so far) and the host promptly placed me at the best spot in the house... a perfect table for two, by the window with a sweeping view of Rockville Town Square. The atmosphere inside is wonderful... Very comfortable with great music (Ne-Yo, Usher) and superstar service. Seconds later (literally seconds) my server Kevin came by, and had no problem with my "time rush." He was super polite and chipper (a rare thing at this time of day.) I placed an order for a bottled juice (apple, only $2) a BonChon Chicken Special (4 wings, 2 drumsticks) with French fries for just $8.99. A side of pickled radishes rounded out my feast... for less than a buck, no less.

Crispy French Fries

MoMo requires advance notice for their twice-fried chicken (20-25 minutes) but BonChon seems to have no such restrictions, and I received my order in just over five minutes (incredible!) Hardly any difference in quality: MoMo is a tad crispier, but BonChon wins out on taste (ask for Half & Half... Soy Garlic and Hot & Spicy.) BonChon's chicken looks beautiful, and tastes even better. It's easy to distinguish between the two flavors, but impossible to decide which is better. I fell in love with the Soy Garlic; but the heat from the Hot & Spicy is to die for. It's like trying to decide between a Ferrari and Lamborghini... Why not drive both?

Pickled Radishes

As an added bonus (details, details) BonChon provides you with a mini bucket to toss your chicken bones into. I say bones, because there's zero chance you won't clean yours "to the bone." Smart. Very smart. They also provide you with extra napkins and a pair of moist towelettes at the end of the meal. Last but not least, they provide a glass of ice with your bottled juice. These three seemingly tiny details make all the difference, trust me.

Clever place to put chicken bones

As far as side dishes go, pickled radishes are delightful... providing a refreshing, cold break from the heat of the chicken (both in flavor, and hot crispy skin.) Did I mention they're just $.99? Incredible. Speaking of, wait until you try the fries. You get tons of 'em (with ketchup on the side) and they're well-seasoned and extra, extra crispy. I tried to stop eating them, but fat chance... It's impossible. In regards to value for your buck, BonChon appears to have no equal. Kevin continued to excel throughout my meal, accepting my heaps of praise (I'm pretty sure I was gushing... call it a fried chicken high) with surprising humility. I'd happily return for lunch every day if my schedule (and my doctor) allowed it. It's darn close to perfect. Check out our Top Five to see who's our new #1 in Fried Chicken: I'll give you one guess, who it is.