I live in Houston and love writing reviews of the local restaurants I visit with family and friends.
There is plenty of Korean-style chicken on the menu at Hoodadak in Katy, Texas. It comes in many different guises. The chicken combo pictured above consists of four wings, fries, some sliced cabbage, a coleslaw of sorts, and a soft drink.
This unique casual restaurant has been open for almost 5 years now at the time of this writing. There is another location in Houston on Westheimer.
Hoodadak is an excellent addition to the other restaurants in the Katy area and the western part of Houston for that matter. They seem to do a good take-out food business, as well. People were regularly coming in to pick up and pay for their orders. I overheard one patron say to the server as he paid the bill the following: “I am always surprised at just how good the food is here!”
Chicken Flavor Choices
Patrons can order an entire chicken, half chicken, wings, or popcorn chicken. But the choices do not end there! People also have to choose what flavor they want. The flavor choices are the following:
- Hot Fried
- Sweet and Spicy
- Soy Garlic
For our first taste test, we ordered the soy garlic fried chicken, which our server told us seemed to be the favorite. This chicken is twice cooked and made to order. The exterior of the chicken is extra crunchy with a soft juicy interior. This chicken recipe is good, but oh my gosh, those fries are extra special! They are some of the best fries we have ever eaten!
Whoever was responsible for the design of this small restaurant with a total of 10 tables and about 38 seats certainly made good use of a chalkboard. It serves as decor but is also utilized to feature some of the menu items. There are also three cubicles, which offer more of a semi-private dining experience.
My husband and I wanted to order what they considered to be their signature dishes, so we did that the first time we visited there. With extra plates on the table, it was easy to share the chicken katsu and the dak-galbi.
Chicken katsu is thin crispy fried strips of breaded panko chicken served with rice and cabbage slaw. I looked up recipes for this sauce online. Katsu sauce has ingredients like soy sauce, ketchup, sherry, ginger, sugar, Worcestershire sauce, and garlic powder. That may or may not be the exact recipe used to dress the chicken here, but we both thought that it was good. Sliced scallions garnished the top of the chicken.
As good as the chicken katsu was, we enjoyed the dak-galbi even more! Tender pieces of chicken are typically stir-fried with an assortment of vegetables and pieces of rice cake and enhanced with a spicy sauce. A bowl of rice was on the side. It was optional to order a fondue-style mozzarella cheese to accompany the dish. After discussing it with our waiter, we decided to try it. It was good, but if we order the dak-galbi again, we will omit it.
For our appetizer, we tried the pork and veggie dumplings. What tasted just like a regular soy sauce was offered for dipping. They were suitable for fried dumplings. If given a choice, I generally order steamed. Many of their offerings are easy to share, and with 10 dumplings per order; this one is no exception.
I guess I will get my steamed dumplings elsewhere, given their penchant for frying. Not everything in Hoodadak is deep-fat fried.
They offer a Korean-style marinated, thinly sliced rib-eye beef dish called bulgogi. It is typically chargrilled or cooked over high heat in a cast-iron pan. There are different ways of serving it here.
- One way is to have it cooked with vegetables and served over rice.
- It also tops some of their waffle fries with other additions such as kimchi. Some people sitting at a table next to us ordered that one day and they were enjoying it.
- We decided to try their bulgogi burger with fries. We added the optional kimchi, mushrooms, and Swiss cheese to the burger. Wow! It was stupendous!
I cannot wait to go back and have more of that bulgogi. Now I am enamored with that dish even though I had never even heard the name before.
The sliced cabbage with spicy topping seems to accompany many of their dishes. That tasty topping also can dress the french fries. Of course, there is also the Sriracha ketchup for use with the fries if desired.
Fit for a TV Episode!
There is a television show on the food network with the name The Best Thing I Ever Ate. Different chefs go around the country and tell about the restaurants serving their favorite dishes. Usually, they go into the kitchens and the chefs show them how to prepare the food.
Another food network show features Jeff Mauro, aka the Sandwich King. If Jeff Mauro or any of those other chefs could taste this bulgogi at Hoodadak, I would bet that it could be a contender for one of those shows! The sandwich is that good! It is undoubtedly one of the best sandwiches that I have had the pleasure of eating in a long time. My husband and I split one, and he also thought that it was delicious.
Looking up recipes for what goes into a bulgogi marinade ... no wonder it is so flavorful! It has ingredients such as soy sauce, sesame oil, minced garlic, honey, rice cooking wine, pear puree, grated peeled ginger, and more. Every recipe is slightly different. Look online to get ideas if you like. The beef was savory, sweet, juicy, tender, and oh-so delectable!
We have thus far chosen to drink only water with our meals. They have a few wines on their menu but seem to offer more in the way of beers. Quite a few are on tap as well as their bottled beer offerings.
I neglected to ask our waiter how many people have taken up that Beer Challenge. If someone chugs an entire quart of beer without resting, there is no fee, and that person can receive a free large order of chicken or select a free Hoodadak T-shirt. Hopefully, there is a mandatory designated driver if someone ever tries that challenge.
© 2020 Peggy Woods