Coco Chicken (Korean Fried Chicken), Fremont
Coco Chicken popped up in the Lucky’s/Semo shopping center (can’t remember the actual name… I know it’s not the Hub) within the past few months and offers among a few other things, Korean fried chicken. It is a small place that can maybe fit 25 total and there was only the owner and one cook on duty on a Saturday afternoon.
If you get an order of chicken which comes in small, medium, large (3 of us split this order of 8 drumsticks, 4 wings for $14.95), or jumbo and dine in, it is accompanied by an AYCE salad bar. Although the salad bar is nothing fancy – freshly washed iceberg/red cabbage, shredded carrot w/ raisins, canned corn, cucumber, celery, carrot sticks, sliced jalapeno peppers – there are a few banchan items as well that make it a bit more interesting – lightly pickled cabbage, pickled daikon, and a soy-marinated mixed vegetable that is slightly pungent and rather addictive. Two dressings are available: sesame and “oriental” which is that thin, slightly sweet (rice wine vinegar?) Ranch-style dressing. There is a small sign partially hidden by the sneeze guard that instructs those who would like kimchee to request it.
The chicken arrived fresh out of the fryer and the thin, crisp exterior improved as it cooled slightly, so I’d recommend resisting the urge to jump right in. The normal order contains a mix of drumsticks and wings, but you can also order just wings or nuggets. Many Yelpers reported that the drumsticks are larger than normal and I didn’t find that, rather they seemed on the smaller size to me but it really didn’t matter as it was more than enough for our little group. The Korean fried chicken I’ve had has always come sans sauce or with sauce on the side, but Coco’s comes coated with your choice of five different sauces and we ordered the thick sweet and hot (one Yelper likened it to a traditional Korean red pepper sauce, lots of honey), the thinner soy garlic (like a dumpling sauce), and the (thin-ish) honey mustard on the side. The first two were winners (I preferred the soy garlic), but unfortunately the honey mustard didn’t have that mustard zip and had an odd, unnatural taste to it. While the chicken was rather impressively cooked and juicy, without the accompanying sauce the chicken needed salt. Still very good.
Other menu items are plates of bulgogi (chicken, beef, or pork) or kalbi which come with rice, potato salad, and some pickled items. A side order of rice is $1.00. French fries are $1.50. Beverages are the usual sodas, beer (Corona, Heineken, Bud, Sierra Nevada, and OB), and soju. Tea, water, and sriracha are also available – you serve yourself. And, for hhc because I know this is her neck of the woods – there is one unisex bathroom to the rear of the restaurant.
There is no existing place link and I'm not able to add it currently, so the address is:
5010 Mowry Ave,
Fremont, Ca 94538