Strange Doings As Han Replaces Ay Chung Rice Flour in San Gabriel Square
The Ay Chung Rice Flour restaurant which has been in San Gabriel Square for the past 8 years is now called Han. New signage and new uniforms. Also the Ay Chung in the Flushing Mall food court on 39th Ave. is also now apparently Han. However, they're still working off of the Ay Chung menu, with deletions, including many of the oyster dishes crossed out. Now here's the strange part. When I went by, the entire staff was Hispanic, including the cashier and the guy who cooked up my order. I'm cool with that, but I wonder how some of the Taiwanese customers feel about it.
The original Ay-Chung Taipei's website: http://www.ay-chung.com/
What's interesting is that the US locations were never listed (unlike Din Tai Fung) on the website and unlike the Taipei locations, they ended up in a fast food restaurant model offering a jack of all trades menu rather than focusing on one and only one signature item. You probably remember the Northern California (Milpitas & Richmond) and Texas branches that shuttered. I was wondering when the SGV and Las Vegas locations would be next.
One can only guess what happened behind the scenes that let to their closures, and whether there were disputes with the US branch owners and the Ay Chung Taipei folks (with regards to rights and royalties). I'm assuming Han is not using Ay Chung branded bowls and maybe not offering the exact same signature killer chili sauce.