restaurants in Metro Manila

Menu, prices: Korea’s bb.q Chicken opens in Metro Manila

Steph Arnaldo
Menu, prices: Korea’s bb.q Chicken opens in Metro Manila

Photo by Steph Arnaldo/Rappler

Ready to feel like you're in 'CLOY?' The world-famous Korean fried chicken joint has crash landed in Taguig City for its first PH branch!

MANILA, Philippines – Hello, chingus! Finally, Metro Manila citizens can now enjoy the same crispy fried chicken experience that Captain Ri and Seri did on Crash Landing on You!

Korea’s famous fried chicken joint, bb.q Chicken, opened its first Philippine branch to the public on Saturday, November 12 at the second level of Bonifacio High Street Central, Taguig City.

BB.Q CHICKEN IN HIGH STREET. Photo by Steph Arnaldo/Rappler

For the K-drama fans out there, you might also recognize it from Goblin and Eternal Monarch…and yes, it’s the exact same franchise! It was brought to the country by the CEO of LCS Group Korea, the official partner of Genesis BB.Q Global, because he said the Philippines is “the largest market in Southeast Asia.”

CASUAL DINING. Photo by Steph Arnaldo/Rappler

bb.q Chicken, which stands for “Best of the Best Quality,” was founded in Korea in 1995 and is now a worldwide name with over 3,500 branches in 57 countries. The brand prides itself on its popular use of pure olive oil for deep-frying, which makes the chicken delicately crunchy but not overly greasy, heavy, or fatty, either. For the first Philippine branch, they made sure to partner with a local chicken supplier.

The restaurant itself is spacious (especially the al fresco area), with seating fit for large groups. The TV screens show iconic K-drama scenes and Korean commercials, and the speakers were blasting popular K-pop tunes for the optimum Korean experience.

GROUP SEATINGS AND A PRIVATE ROOM. Photo by Steph Arnaldo/Rappler

On the first day, understandably, kitchen service was slow, since the Korean management said they did not expect the high volume of guests on its grand opening. However, the managers were on the ground and very apologetic to guests, and the staff still made sure everyone was comfortable while waiting.

Winner winner chicken dinner!

We’re all here for the main event: the fried chicken. Here’s what to expect from bb.q Chicken’s starring best-seller, the Golden Fried Chicken – it was served fresh out of the deep-fryer, so we got a platter of really crispy, golden-brown fried chicken that was almost still glistening and hot to the touch.

GOLDEN FRIED CHICKEN. Photo by Steph Arnaldo/Rappler

After the initial crunch, we got moist, juicy meat inside that had a background hum of tingly Korean spice. The taste wasn’t overly salty like many fried chicken joints’, but the chicken still had that distinct umami factor which didn’t need any gravy at all, IMO. The tangy-sweet pickled radish it comes with was a good partner to the chicken.

FRIED IN OLIVE OIL. Photo by Steph Arnaldo/Rappler

They were hefty pieces of chicken which had equal parts crispy skin and chicken meat, which I liked. The breading wasn’t too thick, and I didn’t feel like they were scrimping on ingredients.

PICKLED RADISH SIDE DISH. Photo by Steph Arnaldo/Rappler

bb.q Chicken goes through three stages of cooking with a special battering powder that’s made of 20-30 natural ingredients. The chicken is cooked per order for 10 minutes at 165 degrees for maximum crunch and freshness. The Golden Fried Chicken is available in Original (slightly spicy) and Mild flavors at P459 (four pieces) or P899 (eight pieces).

There’s also Hot Crispy Chicken for the same prices and Golden Fried Chicken Strips at P439 (10 pieces) and P849 (20 pieces).

SECRET CHICKEN. Photo by Steph Arnaldo/Rappler

If you’re into saucier chickens, bb.q Chicken’s sauced Secret Chicken is world-famous for a reason – Golden Fried Chicken is generously coated in a thick, sticky, sweet-savory Korean glaze made with 20 ingredients, such as gochujang (Korean chili paste), onion, garlic, and more. It’s like the Korean version of a BBQ sauce, similar to a sweet chili sauce, but less of the chili. It costs P509 for eight pieces and P949 for 10 pieces. There’s also Hot Spicy Secret Chicken for the same prices; they weren’t kidding about the hot and spicy label!

bb.q Chicken also has Gangnam-Style Chicken (stir-fried chicken in high heat with leeks, garlic) for P529 for eight pieces and P969 for 16; and Cheesling Chicken – fried chicken with a dusting of mascarpone and cheddar cheese powder for P529 for eight pieces and P969 for 16.

K-razy for K-food

Aside from fried chicken, there’s a ton more authentic and affordable Korean fare to get excited about – there’s Stir-Fried Spicy Chicken (with veggies and cheese in the middle) for P699; Stir-fried Soy Sauce Chicken (P669); and Rosé Seafood Tteokbokki (P359); Spicy Classic Tteokbokki (P299); and a vegetarian-friendly, non-spicy Soy Sauce Tkkeokbokki (P299), with the chewiest rice cakes!

CLASSIC TKKEOKBOKKI. Photo by Steph Arnaldo/Rappler

Also on the menu is Sundubu Jigae, the tofu Korean soup you can get either with kimchi (P329), seafood (P339), or beef (P349). Special platters for sharing also available for your hungry chingus to enjoy, featuring onion rings, cheese fondue, different kinds of fried chicken, fries, and more.

There are also rice meals like Stone-Pot Bulgogi Bibimpap (P319); Stone-Pot Bibimpap (P289); and a Kimchi Fried Rice with Egg (P269) which is really filling and good to eat on its own or with the chicken – sweet-spicy moist kimchi fried rice is topped with tuna flakes and nori, atop a thin egg omelette. Mix it all together for a hearty rice meal!

KIMCHI FRIED RICE WITH EGG. Photo by Steph Arnaldo/Rappler

You can also get Bulgogi Pasta (P389); Myungran Cream Pasta (P419); Rose Seafood Pasta (P419); and Stir-Fried Spicy Carbonara Chicken Noodle (P299), as well Cobb Salad (P299), Chicken Caesar Salad (P289), and Mascarpone Salad (P349) with an oriental dressing and chunks of soft, creamy cheese that helped to temper the spice of the other meals.

MASCARPONE SALAD. Photo by Steph Arnaldo/Rappler

Of course, there’s got to be coffee! bb.q Chicken has Dalgona coffee (P149), affogato (P149), strawberry cheesecake latte (P189), espresso, americano (P99), cafe latte, and cappuccino (P129).

YAKULT SMOOTHIE FLOAT. Photo by Steph Arnaldo/Rappler

There were also fresh fruit juices, fresh fruit shakes, and smoothies, like the cutely-presented Yakult Float Smoothie (P139), with a big scoop of vanilla ice cream. The slightly tangy drink could’ve used more Yakult in it, since it tasted a bit diluted and ended up tasting like a vanilla milkshake. However, I wasn’t complaining, since the drink helped calm my burning tongue after all that spice!

There’s also Minty Melon Milk (P149), Choco Banana (P149) and Strawberry (P199), as well as wines and Korean cocktails (P199) like Seouljito; Melon Drop; K-Pop; Sojutini; K-iced tea, and K-mule. There were also classic cocktails like the margarita, old-fashioned, negroni, mojito, and whiskey sour.

bb.q Chicken is set to open another branch in Okada Manila in the near future. You can check out the Philippine franchise’s Instagram account for more updates. – Rappler.com

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Steph Arnaldo

If she’s not writing about food, she’s probably thinking about it. From advertising copywriter to freelance feature writer, Steph Arnaldo finally turned her part-time passion into a full-time career. She’s written about food, lifestyle, and wellness for Rappler since 2018.