How can you not love a place called Chicken & Beer? Even if it’s really just the subtext for the actual name of the Korean chain – BBQ Chicken. Whenever I’m driving home from Greenville (which is often), I make a point to stop in Duluth for some grub. I usually check out Chow Down and Blissful Glutton’s sites for the must-visit places and make lists of where I want to go, this being one of them.
Which reminds me, I really want to write an iPhone app that is similar to Yelp, except it’s only for viewing (no feedback) and the only content is from bloggers, allowing you to filter by blogger and search geographically. So if I’m in Duluth I could check out a map and see pin points of all the places Chow Down recommends, maybe a 1-2 sentence summary, address/phone, and a link to her full blog post to view in Safari.
The whole problem with Yelp is credibility. As I mentioned yesterday, part of following a single blogger is you can develop a level of trust between blogger and reader. I keep whole lists of restaurants that Gene (Eat Drink Man) recommends, because I generally enjoy the style of food he cooks and the type of restaurant where he dines. It’s much more valuable to me than a bunch of aggregated data from random “Elites” or people with very different tastes. One day. If anyone wants to help, let me know.
Back to the chicken, which was really good. The olive oil fried surface is as crunchy as it gets, with more than a little spice and plenty of seasoning. I dug the flavor from the oil, which they must cook at a lower temp to avoid a bitter, singed crust. Olive oil burns somewhere around 320F. It’s not perfect as the chicken was overdone and not moist enough, but I’d rather more flavor and a super great crust than have a particularly great bird on the inside (LeRoy’s). Recommended for shizzle. It’s right next door to Honey Pig in a newer strip mall. Free Wi-Fi.
I also wanted noodles so I hit up Dan Moo Ji, where I feel about as old and boring as a white guy can feel in Duluth. They’re chock full of young and good looking Korean youngsters, sucking down noodles, and watching Biebs videos on the television. And apparently writing cutesy stuff on the walls. Tee hee hee!
Gratis pickled radish and broth (good even on a hot day) to start.
I started with kimchi gimbap, which is reminiscent of a maki roll. They aren’t mind blowing, but it’s a nice way to get your kimchi and rice fix in bite size form. They’re cheap too.
I also ordered the cold noodles with vegetables and spicy sauce, jjolmyeon. I had not read Jen’s post since last year, and I was definitely put off for a moment when the petite waitress asked me if she could mix up my bowl.
Though I was confused as to why she thought I couldn’t mix my noodles up with my chopsticks, I said sure, and she proceeded to put on a plastic glove and dove her hand into the bowl. As she man-handled my noodles, she gazed at me and asked, “How do you know about this place?”
To which I replied, “the internet.”
“Ah”, she said, as if that made perfect sense.
Just like that my first, and best, handle noodle mixing job was over. I hope it was good for her too.
The noodles were great, super chewy and a bunch of sauce ended up on my shirt as I had difficulty snapping the strands with each bite. Appropriate spice level, I think. Plenty leftover to take home too.
After all that fried chicken and carbs I made a veggie plate for dinner. Tomatoes with chive and balsamic. Pink eye peas with pimienton and a shot of good sherry vinegar. Mandoline sliced squash quickly marinaded in chili oil. And yuzu kosho dosed cauliflower mash (sort of a play on the old horseradish mashed potatoes of twenty years ago). Katie and I were quite pleased with this impromptu and quickly produced meal. Summer vegetable season is a great one.