Cheap Eats 2015: Bonchon

We’re hooked on Bonchon’s impossibly crisp, Korean-style fried chicken.
Bonchon’s Korean-style fried chicken is tossed in either a sweet soy-garlic or spicy red-chili-pepper glaze. Photograph by Scott Suchman.

If KFC is the colonel, Bonchon ought to be known as the general. No one makes fried chicken like this Korean chain. The twice-fried exterior is more carapace than skin, and the crunch can be heard from neighboring tables. Customers tend to be either first-timers or confirmed addicts. The nice thing about the Arlington, Centreville, and Navy Yard locations is that you don’t have to feel as if you’re eating fast food. You can take in the sinuous, clean-lined spaces while you sip a good cocktail. Not that you’re fooling yourself for even a minute that you’re, like, dining. It’s all about the fix—the crunchy, sweet, finger-licking fix.

Cuisine: Korean

Where you can get it: Multiple area locations; bonchon.com

Also good: Pork buns; lychee mojito.

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Ann Limpert
Executive Food Editor/Critic

Ann Limpert joined Washingtonian in late 2003. She was previously an editorial assistant at Entertainment Weekly and a cook in New York restaurant kitchens, and she is a graduate of the Institute of Culinary Education. She lives in Logan Circle.

Anna Spiegel
Food Editor

Anna Spiegel covers the dining and drinking scene in her native DC. Prior to joining Washingtonian in 2010, she attended the French Culinary Institute and Columbia University’s MFA program in New York, and held various cooking and writing positions in NYC and in St. John, US Virgin Islands.