Dallas' fried chicken scene shrinks a tiny bit with the closure of Chicken Moto, a Richardson restaurant dedicated to Korean fried chicken that closed its doors at the end of March.
The restaurant opened in spring 2017 as a full-service fried chicken restaurant from husband and wife Sandy and Greg Bussey, Steve Shin, and Sam Osee, who also own Bbbop Seoul Kitchen. That's where they pioneered their Texas-meets-Korean fried chicken. It took off so well that they decided to spin it off into its own restaurant concept.
Their location at 2069 N. Central Expy., at the northwest corner of US 75 and Campbell Road, was in a center that's attempting to become a foodie destination of sorts, with nearby restaurants such as Cafe Brazil and Kung Fu Tea. However, it's not immediately visible from either the freeway or Campbell Road.
Sandy Bussey says that they faced some obstacles in marketing their restaurant, given the strict permitting in the city of Richardson regarding signage and banners.
They also discovered that the words "Korean fried chicken" do not mean the same thing to everyone.
"Everybody has their idea of what Korean fried chicken is," she says. "And to be honest, there's no such thing as 'real Korean fried chicken.' There are a million fried chick places in Korea, but there is no set recipe, no standard on what cut it is, whether it's bone-in or boneless. The thing that makes it is that it's tossed in a sauce."
Some customers viewed them as a KFC equivalent and expected KFC prices, but Chicken Moto was using higher-quality ingredients and taking a more chef-like approach. "Our process took 48 hours before we even fried it," Bussey says.
They did learn some good intel in case they decide to go another round.
"In a different location, in Dallas, I think it would do well," she says. "And I think if we were to do it again, we'd go with a fast-casual approach instead of sit-down. Eventually we may open another one, but not for now."