We Had Lunch at Chan Chan Food House in Irvine, California
As we transition our lives and business to Southern California over the next few months, Aaron and I will be traveling back and forth between our home near Kansas City and our new place in Newport Beach. Thanks to technology, other than a few hours’ travel time on a plane, we don’t lose any productivity. Even then, I find those hours are often highly productive, anyway, since I usually read or write during the flight.
Today, we were in Newport Beach knocking some things off our task list. We haven’t had a chance to really explore anything in the surrounding area, nor do we expect to until at least a couple of months after we’ve completed the move as we need to execute it with speed and precision, but we did figure that we could take our lunch break to check out one of the local Korean restaurants. We settled on a place called Chan Chan Food House in nearby Irvine, California. We didn’t know what to expect but the food looked delicious and the reviews were good.
When we arrived, it was packed. We put our name on a waiting list outside but were seated in under a minute. After being handed menus, we were told we needed to go to the counter to actually order and pay.
We ended up deciding to get a small order of sweet garlic chicken tenders (which is 8 pieces) and a small order of ChanChan spicy sweet soy chicken tenders (which were also 8 pieces). We opted for water to drink (it was self-serve to side, where you could choose between cold water and hot water) and were served two simple 반찬.
We ended up taking some of our chicken home because this was too much food for the two of us to eat in one sitting. It’s also clearly a calorie bomb; there is an almost guilt in eating it as it’s the sort of place you go because you are craving something wonderful and you are willing to make the nutritional sacrifice to leave your table happy and full. We managed to off-set it with portion control and exercise but know what you are getting into before you go.
The whole thing, with a 20% tip, was around $31, making it a great bargain. It’s easy to see why Chan Chan Food House is so popular. We can’t wait to go back and try some of the other dishes. I’m particularly curious about their Kimchi fried rice and RedRed So Spicy chicken. I know they say the latter is hot but Aaron and I survived Maangchi’s Dwaejigogi-bokkeum (돼지고기볶음) so I’m optimistic we can take them.
Edit from Aaron: I would go back tomorrow.