I am a fan of Korean fried chicken. Growing up with the idea fried chickens are originated from western countries and therefore their chicken cutlet and fried chicken are the best among all, gave me a culture shock (though a minor one lol) when I first came to Korea in 2009. The way Korean fry chickens are so exceptionally excellent that I have to recommend every of my friends who visit Korea to try them before they get back to their usual KFCs in Singapore. (Back then there wasn’t any BBQ Chicken Chain or Bonchon 4 Fingers in Singapore.)
Another impressive fried chicken I had recently was this Garlic Fried Whole Chicken옛날 마늘 통탉 [read: yennal-maneul-tongdak]. I didn’t expected it to come in a form of a whole chicken. Having too much of the usual cut-into-pieces kind of Korean fried chicken, this whole chicken made great 1st impression.
옛날 [read: yennal] means “long ago” or “olden days” in English. The old school drawings and the packaging pretty much suggest that the chicken was prepared following recipes of yesteryears. This restaurant, Go-il Fried Whole Chicken (고일 옛날 통탉) [read: Go-il Yennal Tongdak] uses only domestic chickens, and no preservatives were added in the process of frying the chicken. You could either choose to visit their restaurant at Mapo-Gu Gung-Deok (마포구 공덕) area, or call for delivery if you are staying around the area.
One more interesting fact about the restaurant: they started the business since 1970, makes a total 40+ years of experience in frying chicken. Cool!
It takes about 30 minutes for the chicken to arrive. The deeply fried whole chicken was wrapped with a super old-school brown paper. Unfold the package you find the deeply fried, brown coloured, crispy looking chicken covered by a bed of finely chopped scallions. Beneath the scallions is plenty of garlic sauce.
If you don’t like garlic, I am so sorry that you might not be able to enjoy the dish as the fragrance (or maybe to those who hate garlic, I should call it the “smell”) of the garlic was so flavourfully strong that the whole room was lingering with a distinct garlic aroma hours after we consumed the chicken. LOL. My advice is to eat during dinner or weekend, if you are concern about having the smell with you for several hours after the meal.
Plastic gloves were given in the package. All you need to do is to wear them and start tearing the chicken into pieces! Be extra careful as the chicken is still smokin’ hot.
Hurriedly we started tearing, tearing ….
and endless tearing….
And there you go! Remember to top some garlic and scallions on your bite size chicken before you indulge. The chicken is fried to a crisp and the meat is less greasy to speak of. The skin is thin but crunchy with the garlic sauce nicely enveloping it, making it simply irresistible. Although deeply fried at the outside, the meat is still tender inside. SLURP~ Best if pairing this dish up with icy cool beer, perfect combi meal for a home movie night.
My Verdict: I love scallions and garlic so this garlic whole chicken couldn’t be a wrong choice. I enjoyed it a lot especially the tearing part — it was calling the inner beast in me LOL. Quite a unique experience as we don’t usually pull the chicken ourselves barehanded nowadays anymore. This back-to-old-days dining method actually makes eating chicken so much fun than I expected. Sitting on the floor pulling the chicken, me and my girlfriend couldn’t stop giggling imagining ourselves having the same dish with someone we love, looking as messy and silly. Will you eat “messy food” (food that no one can eat gracefully) with boyfriend? Share with me ; )
고일 옛날 통닭 공덕점 [read: Go-il Yennal Tongdak] There are different outlets in Seoul and what I had was the outlet from the Gong-deok area. Total bill for the whole chicken is KRW15,000, delivery fees included.
Tel: 02-6052-9922 | Time: 1pm-1am
Korean Version of the address: 마포구 공덕동 385-87