Saturday | October 22, 2016
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Korean fried chicken eatery a hit with diners

Fried chicken, twisted potatoes, and garlic mayo sauce are just a few of the delicious flavors offered at Chicken Holic.

Chicken Holic opened July 7 in Kona’s Old Industrial Area and has become a popular plate lunch restaurant through word-of-mouth.

Sujan Yi and her cousin MK Hong decided to bring a new flavor to Kona — an authentic Korean restaurant that specialized in chicken. Hong, who moved to Kailua-Kona from Korea, has had previous experience working in restaurants while living in Korea and brings his experience to the kitchen. All of the recipes are homemade family concoctions put together by Hong’s wife.

“My favorite is the hot and crispy chicken. It comes with garlic mayo homemade sauce,” Yi said. That sauce is more than a one-of-a-kind recipe; it’s a secret family recipe that her mother, Jenny Yi, came up with. So far, it’s been a hit with the locals, Yi said. Served on top of garlic rings or crispy chicken, it’s the perfect compliment to their authentic Korean flavors.

Why have a restaurant dedicated to chicken lovers? Yi noted that chicken is a very popular meat in Korea. Everyone loves chicken, Yi said, so they opened the Kaiwi Street restaurant, next to the Kona Ice House, to satisfy chicken lovers. They offer chicken prepared in various ways with sauces to give it an added touch of flavor.

The staff at Chicken Holic has been overwhelmed by the response from the community and feel accomplished that customers are enjoying the foods they serve.

“People are really interested in the food. We’ve been open two-and-a-half weeks and some people have been back five times already,” Yi said.

Everything is prepared daily. All the food served is prepared that same day and cooked to order.

“The chicken is hand battered and cooked to crispy perfection,” Yi said.

In addition to chicken, they serve a variety of plate lunch options. Spicy pork, kalbi, pork curry, and fish and chips are some non-chicken plate lunch options offered on the menu. Each plate lunch comes with two scoops of rice and a choice of tossed or mac salad, with prices starting at $6.99.

One unique recipe they serve is a twist potato — a specialty in Korea. A twist potato is a potato that has been cut thin a spiral, placed on a stick, deep fried with their homemade batter to a golden brown color, and flavored to perfection.

Chicken Holic offers dine in and take out options from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Saturday. Catering food for parties and events is also available. To try their food or to place a catering order, stop by or call Chicken Holic at 327-0080.

With affordable prices, large portions, and food prepared fresh daily, Yi said you can’t go wrong when you eat at Chicken Holic.

“Once you try our food, you’ll be back for sure — you’ll become a chicken holic,” she said.

Email Mercedes DeCarli mdecarli@


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