restaurants in Metro Manila

Frying soon! What to expect from NeNe Chicken’s 1st Metro Manila branch

Steph Arnaldo

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Frying soon! What to expect from NeNe Chicken’s 1st Metro Manila branch
Ready to spread your wings and fry? South Korea's fried and joy is serving its signature fried chicken in Makati City this April.

MANILA, Philippines – You can never go wrong with fried chicken, especially if it’s from one of the countries that does it best – South Korea. If you’ve been craving for Korean fried chicken after watching your K-dramas, don’t be a-fried! Renowned Korean chain NeNe Chicken is making its way to the Philippines for the first time on April 2024.

NeNe Chicken is opening its first branch in One Ayala Mall, Makati City, open from 10:30 am to 10 pm. Owners Gil and Saeed of Relle Foods Inc. – the company bringing in the brand – confirmed the news to Rappler. If you’re not that familiar with NeNe Chicken yet, or if you are but don’t know what to expect from its first Philippine foray, here’s the lowdown fresh out of the fryer!

Spread your wings and fry!

NeNe – which actually means “Yes Yes” in Korean – is being brought to the Philippines by two young friends Gil and Saeed, “who know a thing or two about great-tasting chicken,” they said.

Relle Foods owns and operates NeNe Chicken in other countries outside South Korea, while also holding the master license for a few brands in the Philippines. They decided to finally bring NeNe Chicken to the Philippines after seeing it so well-received by Filipinos in other countries.

LEGENDARY CHICKEN. Fried chicken is coated in a sweet and spicy sauce for one of NeNe’s signature flavors. NeNe Chicken Philippines

“We want to give Filipinos here an authentic KFC (Korean Fried Chicken) brand offered at an affordable price point,” Gil said.

NeNe aims to stand out from its other Korean chicken competitors by offering its menu at budget-friendly prices.

PHILIPPINE MENU. Aside from fried chicken, NeNe Chicken PH will also serve other snackable dishes. NeNe Chicken Philippines

“Our main goal is to share good food with as many customers as we can. We don’t want to be a ‘Sometimes Food’ like our competitors, but instead be an ‘Everyday Food,'” Gil added. 

For its Philippine outpost, Gil and Saeed wanted a casual and inviting space where different people could come together and enjoy good food with good company.

“We want to celebrate everyones uniqueness, which is symbolized with the mismatching chairs. Our space is like a friend’s house. We want you to come and hang out.”

Korea’s fried and joy, now in Metro Manila

Fresh chicken is sourced from NeNe’s sustainable farmers, marinated in a signature blend, seasoned in flour, and then fried until light and crispy. NeNe’s sauces and toppings are authentically Korean and sourced from Korea, made from recipes that have been perfected since 1999.

CRISPY. Golden-brown, fried chicken goes through a signature process until juicy and crispy on the outside. NeNe Chicken Philippines

“Our customers can expect to experience the genuine taste of KFC (Korean Fried Chicken) flavors and how it should taste in Korea,” Gil said.

SAUCY. There’s Swicy, Bulgogi, and Freaking Hot flavors to the fried chicken. NeNe Chicken Philippines

NeNe Chicken’s Philippine menu will feature the Legendary Chicken Range of its famous flavors, such as the Original crispy chicken; the world-famous Swicy (sweet-and-spicy); Bulgogi (garlic-soy blend); and Freaking Hot.

SNOWING CHICKEN. Crispy chicken is smothered in a rich seasoning of cheeses, sometimes topped with sauces. NeNe Chicken Philippines

The Signature Snowing Range – which Gil said first originated from Nene Chicken – offers the Snowing Cheese flavor, which is crispy chicken coated in a rich, “snowy” layer of NeNe’s secret blend of cheese. The Snowing Spicy is a spicy version, and the Snowing Vegetable has a rich, cheesy seasoning with extra notes of veggie flavors.

More flavors will be announced during the official opening, Gil said. The menu will also include burgers, fries, twister potatoes, K-Dogs with a twist, cheese balls, tteokbokki, rice bowls, and desserts.

NeNe’s golden-brown history

The K-favorite chicken brand first started as a chicken processing facility in 1995, and then became the NeNe Chicken brand in 1999 with the mission to “create a happy society where people come together.”

Since then, NeNe has grown to over 1,500 stores in 11 different countries worldwide.

SEVENTEEN FOR NENE. K-pop boy group SEVENTEEN have appeared in various commercials for the brand. NeNe Chicken Philippines

NeNe Chicken also boasts an impressive roster of Korean ambassadors, such as hit K-pop group SEVENTEEN, girl group OH MY GIRL, boy group NU’EST, and even comedian Yoo Jae-suk. NeNe also makes cameos in various K-dramas, such as in Netflix’s She Would Never Know.

OH MY GIRL. The K-pop girl group also vouches for the popular Korean chicken brand. NeNe Chicken Philippines

“We want NeNe Chicken to continue to be the ‘Happy Choice’ for fried chicken lovers worldwide,” Gil and Saeed said. With plans to expand the brand throughout the country after the first branch, we’re excited to come along for the chicken ride! – Rappler.com

For more information, you can check out NeNe Chicken Philippines’ website or Facebook page.

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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.