KFC (Korean Fried Chicken) Tops Fried Chicken Rankings in East Bay

Albert Poon
Photo by Albert Poon

A few years back on a business trip to Seoul, our client and host met us at our hotel to welcome us for a few days of meetings. Without much fanfare, we simply walked across the wide boulevard from the hotel and into the undistinguished small retail plaza on the lower floors of an office building. We found a small table in the nearby Kkanbu Chicken, a local chimaek — chicken and beer — chain. With one jet-lagged bite, it dawned on me that Koreans had something special going on with fried chicken.

Kkanbu Chicken, Potato Fries, and Crisp Beers

Two thoughts popped into mind. First, it was the very best fried chicken I had ever had. It had a distinctive crunchy, crisp skin that wasn’t heavy or greasy. It was seasoned with bold Asian flavors — garlicy, savory, sweet, and tangy. I washed down each bite with a refreshing, light Korean lager and contemplated my second thought. Should a culture that already ruled BBQ really own fried chicken too? Well, if that humble first meal off the plane was a sign, then the answer is yes. Koreans should very much control the world’s fried chicken.

If you have never had your own chicken epiphany, I invite you to check out the places below. If you have, the joy of sublime, satisfying KFC (Korean Fried Chicken) delivery is a few clicks away.


Temescal-based OBTOWN sports a full selection of Korean fare including a full range of chicken dishes, not just KFC. For their KFC, they offer the classic set of sauce options — sweet and spicy, Extra spicy and sweet, garlic soy or plain.

Gan Jang Chicken

Garlic & soy sauce fried chicken.

The restaurant highlighted in the story. Order delivery or grab pick-up from this amazing spot.
Read Next
Chicken & Rice Around the Globe in East Bay
Susannah Chen
Chicken and rice is such a crowd-pleasing combination that just about every country has its own rendition. Here are some favorites.
Homeroom a Pioneer in Temescal Revival
Susannah Chen
A decade ago, Erin Wade was living an unhappy existence as a corporate labor and employment lawyer in San Francisco. Today, she’s the force behind Homeroom, a perennially packed mac and cheese restaurant in Oakland that’s looking ahead to its 10-year anniversary.