Back when I was still in my very first job, me and my office mates have this weekly tradition of going outside our office canteen to have lunch. It’s our way of signaling that weekend is coming and it’s our way of patting our back for a job well done for the whole week.
We would usually try to eat different kinds of restaurants every week, but our favorite Thank God It’s Friday (TGIF) food is KFC. It’s not the popular American fast food chain. It rather stands for Korean Fried Chicken which offers my delicious comfort food when I worked in South Korea for a month.
Being invited to try out Gangnam Wings, we’ve discovered that Gangnam Wings is a great choice for satisfying my Korean fried chicken cravings.
In Korea, the perfect combo is chicken and beer so it’s not a surprise that Gangnam Wings has a bar counter for the pub feel.
Millenials will be happy to know that beer pong can be played for PHP 650 (or USD 12.95) which includes ten local beers and one soju.
For those who still haven’t tried it yet and doesn’t know how it works, what you just have to do is to shoot the ping pong ball into the opponent’s red cups. Once a ball lands a cup, the cup is taken away, and the opponent has to drink the contents of the cup. The game ends when there are no more opponent’s cups left. Loser certainly has to drink the remaining winner’s cups of beer.
Both Koreans and Filipinos alike will enjoy the atmosphere at Gangnam Wings. The interior is tastefully done with furniture to materials imported from South Korea. According to the owner, Mr. Rinky Tuaño, the design concept of the restaurant is that it’s a giant coop where the hen’s eggs are incubated.
Hence, there aren’t only metal grills but also warm lights on the ceilings. This helps create a leisurely atmosphere which is conducive for engaging conversations.
What sets Gangnam Wings apart from the usual Korean fried chicken restaurants in the Philippines is that they have an in-house Korean chef. Indeed, Gangnam Wings partnered with Chef Jung Chungyael to ensure that the dishes served are genuinely Korean in taste. The important seasoning ingredients are also directly imported from South Korea.
We didn’t get the chance to meet him but it was apparent from the food that we tasted so far that he has high standards. The team he left behind for his short vacation was able to execute dishes that briefly transported us to South Korea.
Korean Fried Chicken
The primary reason for visiting Gangnam Wings for me is, of course, their chicken wings. Compared to the American wings, korean chicken wings are thinner, less crumbly but have juicy insides.
There are myriads of ways to enjoy Gangnam Wings. You can order four pieces of wings, four pieces of drumsticks, or a basket of whole chicken. What varies is the sauce you choose.
GANGNAM WINGS YANG-NYUM, PHP 288 (or USD 5.74)
The double deep-fied chicken is smothered in a sticky, sweet and spicy red sauce called yang-nyeom and garnished with sesame seeds. The sauce’s typical ingredients are gochujang (Korean red chili pepper paste), ketchup, garlic, and corn syrup. It perfectly pairs the chicken for me.
GANGNAM WINGS SPICY YANG-NYUM, PHP 298 (or USD 5.93)
Those who opt for hotter version should choose this instead.
GANGNAM WINGS GANJANG, PHP 268 (or USD 5.34)
If spice is not your style, which is usually the case with Korean fried chicken, you may want to have this instead. The ganjang sauce is soy sauce mixed with garlic and vinegar.
We are accustomed with the sauce glazed on the chicken. So it seems very dry for us. However, the flavor lies inside the scrumptious chicken wings.
GANGNAM CRISPY (ORIGINAL), PHP 498 (or USD 9.98)
If you’re a group of family or friends, we highly recommend for you to order this. You get to try all three flavors:
- ganjang (soya) sauce,
- ang-nyum (sweet and spicy)
- spicy yang-nyum (more on the spicier side).
So each person can choose their sauce according to their preference. More importantly, the taste of the chicken can be controlled through the intensity of coating or dipping.
If there’s a potato lover in your group like Me-An, you’ll be pleased to know that they also offer a wide variety of flavored fries to choose from.
TRUFFLE FRIES, PHP 168 (or USD 3.35)
Cooked in truffle oil, it is then sprinkled with parsley flakes and salt. The truffle taste is evident in these fries which adds that premium flavor to it.
BEEF BULGOGI FRIES, PHP 258 (or USD 5.14)
This is one of their bestsellers and a favorite among our group. What makes it special is that it has beef bulgogi (Korean beef bbq) and the cheese drizzled on top of it is cream cheese.
Cheese is always a good combination when it comes to fries, but adding it with that savory beef bulgogi makes it so much better. It can actually serve as a whole meal since the fries has high carbohydrates.
CHICKEN KIMCHI FRIES, PHP 258 (or USD 5.14)
Similar to the beef bulgogi fries, it is drizzled with cream cheese. This is certainly different as it has shredded chicken and layers of fermented kimchi.
I personally liked this version since I’m fond of kimchi. However, if I have to pick among the three, I’ll choose the beef bulgogi fries.
Korean ramyeon (or noodles) are typically from the package of Korean instant noodles. Despite that, there is still an art of cooking it so the noodles won’t turn mushy and the fresh ingredients will complement the broth.
SPICY NOODLE (SOUP), PHP 148 (or USD 2.95)
Take this for instance. This has a serious spicy kick but, with the fresh egg added into the mix, the heat is a bit toned down.
SEAFOOD SPICY NOODLES (SOUP), PHP 198 (or USD 3.98)
Also known as jjampong, it is one of South Korea’s popular noodles. Indeed, don’t expect it to be loaded with generous amounts of fresh seafood with its affordable price. It’s still enjoyable though as it has a respectable amount of seafood flavor. The heatness can’t also be toyed with. It made me reach for water with every slurp.
SPICY DRY NOODLES, PHP 198 (or USD 3.98)
The ramyeon is also available without soup. It’s noodles covered in sauce that has a faint trace of sweetness. Of course, there is still the presence of heat which can be explosive for some especially when one orders the level three (3).
Good thing chicken is offered on the side to help make it bearable.
JAPCHAE (GLASS NOODLES), PHP 248 (or USD 4.94)
Of course, you can’t miss the beloved Korean glass noodle stir fried with meat and vegetables. The bouncy noodle texture is enveloped with a balanced sweet and savory flavor.
Moving on, we got to try two of Korea’s version of Japanese savory pancakes called okonomiyaki. The Korean pancakes are still quite distinct itself.
SEAFOOD PANCAKE (PA-JEON), PHP 268 (or USD 5.34)
The pancake itself is a little bit flat but it’s filled with various seafoods with green onions as well and is accompanied with a sauce. Fluffy, tasty, and perfectly seasoned, it tastes so good that it can be eaten without sauce.
KIMCHI PANCAKE (PA-JEON), PHP 258 (or 5.14)
They swapped the seafood for Kimchi. It’s reddish overall color may not be appealing to some. But believe me when I say tastewise, it’s really good. This is, in fact, my personal favorite out of the two.
SEAFOOD TOPOKKI WITH CHEESE, PHP 278 (or USD 5.6)
Just like how it seems, it’s really spicy which is how it’s usually sold in Korea. What’s good about their version is that it has a slight sweet taste which helps me give time to adjust to its spicy nature.
You’ll love chewing on the stir-fried rice cake with the other ingredients that accompany it such as fish cakes, glass noodles, and various seafood to name a few. I would have prefered it though if the cheese is melted and stringy.
With the sweltering summer, bingsu is one of the great ways to beat the heat. It’s basically fine shaved ice with milk and diffrent kinds of fruits or toppings.
Choices include MANGO BINGSU, OREO BINGSU, and BANANA BINGSU priced at PHP 250 (or USD 5) respectively. Me-An loved the Oreo Bingsu and swore to return for it. I, on the other hand, loved the mango binsu.
ROCKMELON BINGSU, PHP 350 (or USD 7) is also another choice. The melon balls has the right amount of coldness which is friendly for those who have sensitive teeth.
One of Korea’s signatured alcoholic beverage is the soju. It usually comes in small bottles and has that seemingly innocent looking transparent color to it.
Soju has been a staple amongst Korean bar restaurants globally since it matches perfectly with any Korean dish whether it be Korean fried chicken, Korean BBQ or even just kimchi. Gangnam wings offers simple but delicious soju cocktail concoctions that will make you think a torturous hangover the next day is worth it.
WATERMELON SOJU, PHP 588 (or USD 12.6)
This watermelon punch placed in a hollowed-out watermelon is good for groups. We can imagine us with our friends enjoying it.
PINEAPPLE SOJU, PHP 488 (or USD 9.6)
It has the same concept as the watermelon one, but this uses pineapple instead.
YAKULT SOJU, PHP 348 (or USD 6.98)
They didn’t place it in a yakult bottle but, instead, they poured large amounts of yakult in a big glass. A soju bottle is then placed on top which continously fills the glass as you drink.
On top of all their existing menu items, these, they will be soon adding this to their menu.
KIMCHI CON CARNE FRIES
Yes, this has kimchi and chili con carne with cream cheese and jalapeños on top.
We don’t know how a Korean buffalo wings is supposed to taste like, but just basing on taste it’s good. It comes with a cream cheese dip instead of a supposed bleu cheese dip.
BULGOGI BEEF SANDWICH
This is great for an afternoon snack or even dinner as it’s really filling. What we like about this is that they used ciabata bread that suits the chewy beef bulgogi.
We think this is their chicken fillet sandwich. That melted cheese looks astounding inside the sandwich. Definitely a nice choice too!
Gangnam Wings is Reasonable
With a wide array of menu items with competitive prices, we highly recommend Gangnam Wings. Fried chicken lovers such as myself, french fries addicts like Me-An, or those who simple want to have a good time alike will truly love it. Additionally, their Korean Fried Chicken is as authentic as it can get being made by a legitimate Korean Chef.
So yes! Satisfy your Korean fried chicken cravings at Gangnam Wings.
We would love for you to try it too. As such, two (2) of our Instagram followers have the chance to each win a P500 gift certificate. If you’re interested to join, check out our Instagram for the mechanics.
Upper Ground Floor, Outside Building A, SM Megamall, Ortigas, Mandaluyong City.
Operating Hours: Sun. to Mon. 10AM to 1AM and Fri. to Sat. 10AM to 3AM.