Food

How a passion for authenticity transforms the dining experience

Photograph: BonChon

Consumers can tell when the food they are enjoying is authentic. The flavors are more robust, the care in preparation is apparent and each bite is savored. Right now, Korean chicken concepts are booming, and restaurant-goers are eating them up. Data from The Food Institute states interest in Korean cuisine spiked nearly 90% in the 12 months leading up to January 2022, and the upward trajectory of Korean restaurant concepts is expected to continue in the foreseeable future. The line between wanting the familiar and branching out with spices and textures is growing, as global flavors have been increasing in popularity—there is just something about a comforting and satisfying meal that resonates with customers.

Restaurants are noticing this popularity among consumers and integrating Korean-inspired items into their menus. Other restaurants have tailored the entirety of their menus to Korean cuisine, creating products that hone in on Korean culture in an effort to drive increased customer appeal. For Bonchon, a 400-plus unit Korean fried chicken concept, its mission is to “spread the joy of Korean comfort food around the world.” This mission is backed by the brand’s well-known menu items, most famously its crispy Korean fried chicken. The brand maintains its focus on bringing the Korean wave to new markets and introducing communities to the culinary experience of Korean food.

For two years, Bonchon founder Jinduk Seo obsessively perfected Bonchon’s signature sauces and fried chicken. Seo brought the brand to New York City in 2006 and said,  "When police were dispatched to manage traffic around the new restaurant, I knew we had a winning formula." This formula is what keeps customers coming back and investors buying into the brand as it grows.

Bonchon double fries and brushes its signature Soy Garlic and Spicy sauces onto its chicken; both of these elements help to lock in the moisture of the chicken, make it extra crispy and accentuate the flavor. It is a process that is unique and one the brand will not be forgoing. The double crunch is what put the brand on the map.

Numbers don’t lie when it comes to what the people want. Bonchon has seen a 24.7% increase in its AUV since 2018 and a growing following throughout the United States and internationally with more than 400 locations. Bonchon also has a reported average unit volume of $1.68 million and is poised for future growth, with franchisees snapping up single and multi-units across the country.

When restaurant franchises stay true to their roots, the customers can taste it. That is what keeps them coming back again and again. Flavors mixing the familiar with the new provide comfort and adventure, which is what is making Korean chicken concepts so popular. When the dining experience is enjoyable, everything else falls into place. To learn more about becoming a Bonchon franchise partner, click here.

This post is sponsored by Bonchon

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