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Boka (St Marks Place)—serving Bon Chon Chicken?

Has anyone been to this place yet? I've heard good things about Bon Chon chicken, but every time I've walked by it's been pretty empty.

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  1. Yes, they have Bon Chon, and yes, it is good. I went on a Friday right after they opened, and while it was empty when we got there at 7:30, it eventually filled up. They were still definitely working out the kinks as far as service goes (they tried to deliver the wrong thing to us multiple times and didn't know what a drumstick was - wtf??), and if you are familiar with Bon Chon, they only had the wings (although wings and drumsticks were on the menu, so I imagine they will be getting the drumsticks eventually if they haven't already). I for one am very pleased to have a Bon Chon closer than Koreatown. I'm addicted. That spicy chicken hurts so good. Other Korean offerings were also good, like the kimchi pancake, but stear clear of the sushi. It was kinda awful -- tasteless and the rice texture was all wrong. And there was nothing "salady" about the tuna tartare salad -- it was just tuna tartare. Tasty, but I was hoping for some greens to make me feel better about gorging myself on fried chicken. Overall the value was great -- cheap pitchers and large portions. Great for a group of friends. I will be going back for that chicken again very soon!

    1 Reply
    1. re: _emilie_

      Thanks so much for the info! We stopped by tonight. Service was sssssslow but veggie pancake was pretty good, and spicy chicken (wings and drumettes—really just both parts of the wings) was awesome. Really perfect, moist, spicy, crunchy. Sapporo and Kirin pitchers for $11...pretty good deal, if you're willing to wait a bit for food. I wonder if they deliver...
      A good number of tables were filled, I think this place could succeed.

    2. First the Koreans adopt the hot dog www.chowhound.com/topics/535994 and now they kidnap Buffalo wings. Cool by me. I had 3 drumsticks and 6 wings with the garlic soy sauce which were fried in such a way as to almost entirely remove the grease. Perfect with the daikon radish in sugar/vinegar (rather than celery and blue cheese). Have to try the hot sauce next time.

      4 Replies
      1. re: guttergourmet

        The hot version can be hothothot (and we're not wimps). Be prepared with pitchers of beer (quite affordable.)

        1. re: maggiej

          really? I got the spicy ones there and was dying for more spice. Don't get me wrong, they were still tasty, but they seemed a little tame. not sure if they dumbed it down for me b/c I'm a "foreigner" which can often be the case in spicy asian restaurants. In this case though i can't imagine they adjust the spiciness per customer since it's a pretty uniform product they're making.

          1. re: Renguin

            The first time we had it we found it tame enough, but later visits have been TRULY tearjerkingly spicy. So I think it does vary.

            1. re: maggiej

              Took out a box of hot-had a nice kick but definitely not as hot as the best Buffalo wings I've had.

      2. I went late night (they are open until 3!) and was more than satisfied. The chicken is definitely as good as the BCC in Koreatown. The Kimchi pancake was delicious and greaseless. The highlight, surprisingly enough, werethe squid balls. I dare say they are better than Otafuku's nearby.

        1. Beware! My boyfriend and I came in here for the first time tonight, itching for some close-by Bon Chon chicken. Aside from the greasiest bon chon we've ever had, our experience with the restaurant owner was what shocked/horrified us the most!

          Because my boyfriend was on antibiotics and we were craving some fresh watermelon juice, we asked our waitress if it's possible to just get a glass of watermelon juice (the drink menu did not display any non-alcoholic drinks). Our waitress came back and said yes, and without checking with us, proceeded to bring an entire watermelon to our table. We felt bad about bringing it up to her as she barely understood English and took our food order wrong already, we decided to just keep the big'ol watermelon. When the bill came, there was a whopping $25 charged under "watermelon sojo". I asked if it was charged by mistake, another waitress came over and politely explained that it's just the "name" of the beverage and that there was no mistake.

          What??? Since when does a watermelon cost $25 in a St. Mark's restaurant? Jean George or Morimoto wouldn't even dare to ask for that kind of price! I asked to speak to the manager, at which point the 20something bartender with a chip on his shoulders came over and told me that he was the owner, and that he goes out quite often himself and sees every restaurant charging the same price for virgin juice blends as alcoholic cocktails (hmm, wonder where he hangs out on his nights off). I then asked if this policy was explicitly stated on his menu, he then had the audacity to exclaim "I can charge whatever I want, I don't need to show every price on my menus!" REALLY??? Who gave this guy his restaurant license???!

          What was more ludicrous was that his own staffs came to our table and apologized repeatedly while he instructed someone to bring to us a blackboard from the outside that had "watermelon sojo $25" written on it. Uhhh yeah, got that -- but....our drinks did not have any sojo for you to slap on the alcohol mark-up! If this self-proclaimed owner actually had some business sense in him, he would've corrected the charge and politely apologized for shady behavior, and maybe kept his restaurant reputation intact. Instead, we received another bill 5 minutes later, with a 25% discount on the 25 bucks and wait......my boyfriend's credit card already got swiped with the new total charged without our knowledge!!!! We were horrified and disgusted...completely speechless!

          I wonder how long this place will last.....

          4 Replies
          1. re: LFoodie2009

            This looks sort of familiar.

            http://www.yelp.com/user_details?user...

            And it's your only post, both here and on Yelp. Hmmm.

              1. re: KTinNYC

                Thanks. Why I never get any work done, reason #412(b).

            1. re: LFoodie2009

              Gotta say, my couple of experiences there were very different. Once I got the drumsticks and found them pretty much right on the mark compared with Bon Chon. The other time I had just edamame and sake.

              One slow night I wound up chatting with a guy who was working the bar and said he was a co-owner. He was really nice, no service or check problems at all.

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              Boka
              9 St Marks Pl, New York, NY 10003