Fried Chicken News
Pelicana Korean fried chicken chain flaps into Texas, Dallas first
Dallas' busy Korean chicken scene is getting a new player: Pelicana Chicken, a South Korean-based operation expanding into the U.S., will enter the Texas market with a location in the Dallas area, set to debut this fall.
The restaurant will open at 1012 MacArthur Dr., Carrollton, in a new build just off George Bush Turnpike, part of a larger retail center that includes several other Korean eateries.
A spokesperson for the franchise group that's bringing Pelicana to Dallas says that the location, which has been in the works for a year, is still under construction.
“We’re hoping to wrap it up in the next couple of weeks,” the representative says. "We're tentatively looking at mid-to late October or early November."
Pelicana was founded in South Korea in 1982 and has more than 3,000 locations around the world. It opened its first U.S. restaurant in 2014, and now has 28 U.S. locations including 13 in New York and five in California.
The chain serves fried chicken, half or whole, plus wings, in two choices: Original, with a light batter, coated in a sweet-spicy sauce; or the signature Crispy, featuring a double coating of the batter that creates a thicker fried crust.
Seven seasonings include spicy, smoky hot, or garlic.
Side dishes include three types of fries – original, shaken, or sweet potato – and chicken dakgangjeong, a traditional Korean dish with chunks of chicken in a sweet/hot sauce.
Authentic items include ddukbokki, their spin on the popular Korean street food known as tteokbokki, AKA spicy rice cakes, cooked with fish cake and vegetables. Lunch dishes include chibob, boneless chicken over white rice with sweet & spicy sauce and sour cream.
It’s an encouraging sign to see adventurous options like boneless chicken feet, stir-fried sausage, and fishcake soup, although menu offerings vary by location.
"This is a franchise and there are things that we have to do, but we also have some flexibility," the restaurant rep says. "We are allowed to ideate based on the customer base and location."
Korean chicken is almost always accompanied by cold beer, or at least the availability of beer, and Pelicana has a bar with a suitable selection.
“Every Pelicana has a sit-down bar, and it’s kind of a sports bar, Irish pub like environment with TVs,” the rep says.
The chain has plenty of competition in the DFW area, with recent entries such as Bonchon, Mad For Chicken, and BB.Q Chicken, although its heartiest competitor is likely to be No. 1 Plus Chicken, which also offers chicken and beer at its Dallas and Richardson locations. The approaches are similar – chicken fried Korean-style, which is a lighter fry than its American counterpart – and a menu that touches on more ethnic foods of Korea.