This is the first of our Chicken, Chicken, Chicken series of chicken joints in Korea. We’re starting with the grandaddy of chicken hofs, Two-Two, sometimes called by its Korean transliteration, Dul-Dul 둘둘치킨. For me, this was my introduction to Korean fried chicken in 2004, and it is still the standard that I compare all the rest to.
Started in 1978 as Gela Chicken in Myeong-dong, Two-Two (name changed in 1990) was the dominant force in chicken. They were everywhere. They’re still holding up strongly, though public tastes are moving more towards the American styles of BBQ and BHC. Supposedly they’ve had plans to expand extra-territorially since 2007 to the U.S., Japan, Russia, Vietnam, Myanmar, Australia and China. Please comment if you’ve seen it in any of those places.
Slogan as of this writing
The hof style is a paper thin crust after twice frying, seasoned in what smells a little like Chinese five spice. Two-Two pre-fries half birds and holds them in their window in front of the fryer. They refry to order and hack into bite-sized pieces.
What it says: “We have a chicken for ajosshies, and we’re not ashamed of it. We’re established, so we go the most established gag man currently on TV.”
The regular fried chicken is surprisingly juicy, especially in the dark meat arena. Two-Two’s strength is their plain fried chicken with optional sauce for dipping. It’s perfect beer chicken. The crust is delicate, almost non-existent. Little grease drips from the bird, making it easier to eat a lot.
Sweet, garlicky and smooth. No chunks. It’s a little too sweet. It’s best to have the sauce on the side and dip it, as having it smothered in it beforehand kills the butterfly delicate crispness of the skin.
Pickled radish and cabbage with ketchup and mayonnaise. Not necessarily goodies, but that’s what comes with it. Also a packet of sesame salt. Nothing outstanding there.
What to get?
Two-Two is trying to diversify with new offerings like teriyaki. But their strength is their original fried chicken. It usually comes with the yangnyum sauce on the side, so you can get a bit of both worlds. It holds well for take out and delivery, so if you’re not in the mood for the Cass on tap in the restaurant, you can get some better beers to drink with it at home. It’s also one of those chickens that’s good after some chill time in the fridge.
I’m mad for the yangnyeom at duldul. It was my comfort food through some tough spots.
My current favorite is Gumne (굽네, I think) – their oven-roasted boneless chicken is hella good.
Feel free if you want to do a Chicken, Chicken, Chicken review of Gumne.
In the Philippines, there’s one 둘둘치킨 joint in Ortigas. My boyfriend and I got excited because it was one of 2 Korean Chicken joints in the Philippines at that time. But, I got disappointed with it. The chicken was dry and it didn’t taste much. We ordered 반반 (half 앙념 half original). The 양념 was bland and the original was so dry that you had to give extra effort to get through to chicken breast meat @.@ I’m still mad about BBQ 치킨 and I have yet to try 본촌치킨~ ^^
Seriously? Bad on Two-Two, then. What happened with BBQ?
Yeah. High expectations just fell flat. I’m not mad at BBQ. Haha. I’m mad about their chicken ^^ I still find it the best Korean Fried Chicken joint in town. There are only 3 Korean Chicken joint franchises here: BBQ, 둘둘 and 본촌. There are those hole in the wall, mom and pop kind of chicken joints but they don’t match up to what I want in a fried chicken (not greasy, crispy, juicy and flavorful inside and out…of course, piping hot ).