Tuesday, January 20, 2009

99 Chicken, Santa Clara, California

Hot Spicy Sauce Chicken

This place sounded interesting at first. Located along a strip of largely Korean outlets (2781 El Camino Real, 408-244-5599), these guys specialized in chicken and beer, Korean-style. I wasn't quite sure what that meant, but I definitely was curious, so it was great that a friend of mine suggested that we meet here tonight. It looked downscale enough from the outside, with its tacky appearance and giant neon signs touting "beer" and "chicken." So was this basically a Korean version of buffalo wings? Sounded like my kind of place.

Unfortunately, it wasn't. While the chicken was indeed lip-scorchingly spicy, the red sauce was also very, very sweet - so sweet that I really couldn't eat it, and pretty much stopped after a few legs (by the way, those were full-sized drumsticks - not the little buffalo wing-sized ones that I thought they were going to be). I could have done without the stale popcorn and tiny salad bar provided gratis on the side too. But the light Korean beer did go very well with the chicken, perhaps making the beverages my favorite part of the meal.

Now that I look at it, I have had something like this before - at a Korean chicken chain that had expanded to Singapore, where I similarly had concerns about how sweet the sauce was. If only they made a non-sweet version - perhaps salty like kimchi - in which case I'd probably be all over this stuff. In the meantime, I think I'll be sticking to proper buffalo wings.


Hakka House said...

My favorite Korean fried chicken place in LA is called Kyochon. The honey-soy glaze is just the right combination of sweet and savory.

Kathy said...

I miss driving down the El Camino Real, the weather in Santa Clara is oh so beautiful!

Don't know why but suddenly, I miss Ghirardelli Chocolate and the seafood chowder by the sea. Very touristy huh? Haha.

Have fun in Santa Clara. The sunshine and wind in your face is priceless!

francis said...

Love fried chicken...

Joy said...

I also don't like the spicy chicken here. Their original fried chicken is excellent though! Super crunchy, super moist. Some of the best fried chicken ever!