Address: 1825 W Chandler Blvd, Chandler, AZ 85224
Phone number: (480) 917-4620
Let me tell you a story about Korean fried chicken:
After every venture back from college, my hometown friends and I would go to this fried chicken place, order a pitcher of beer and a big plate of delicious, crispy, gooey, Korean fried chicken.
I heard this place over a friend’s comment on facebook that linked to this article and I’ve been complaining about not having fried chicken ever since I’ve experienced Asian food in Phoenix so I hit up a bunch of friends and we went to Crazy Chicken and Crab.
If you’ve never heard of Korean fried chicken, that’s to be expected. I would say it’s been only popular very recently and only really popular in Los Angeles and the Bay Area. What makes Korean fried chicken different from your typical southern fried chicken is basically thinner breading, crunchier skin (mainly using cornstarch instead of flour), and can be covered in sauce or has a sour sauce on the side. They also usually fry it twice (this is also how to make the best french fries).
In most cases, the sauce that clings onto this chicken is relatively sweet and spicy and it would remind you of really big pieces of sweet and sour chicken. I would argue some Korean fried chicken is too sweet and I admit that I like the dried, no sauce variety much better than the sauce covered. This also applies to buffalo wings. I like no sauce better than drowned in sauce but that’s really a preference.
I’m not a huge fan of crab. I’ll eat it but I am not a fanatic. My friend who came with me however, is.
I went with a group of 5 really good friends and these dudes love food. We convinced each other to get 4 plates of chicken. We ordered: Fried Padak Chicken, Garlic Soy Sauce Chicken, Sweet and Spicy Chicken, and Extreme Spicy Chicken.
My crab loving friend also ordered the crab at $16.00 a pound (this is market price so the price varies).
Fried Padak Chicken: This item is their showcase dish. Piled high chicken is decorated with fancily shredded scallions makes this mountain an impressive piece of art. It is served with this thick sauce on the side. However, I found the sauce too overpowering with wasabi. However, the chicken was really good. Super crispy, smelled amazing and juicy. I recommend eating either the small bits or the legs and arms as they are the juiciest.
Garlic Soy Sauce Chicken: Good and had flavor. You can tell these were quickly coated in a slightly vinegary soy sauce with garlic in them. The flavor was mild and it tasted like a slightly saltier version of the Padak chicken. It was still good chicken but the flavor wasn’t eye opening.
Sweet and Spicy Chicken: The sauce was very flavorful and spicy enough to eat. I would say that the spice in this one builds up the more you eat it.
Extreme Spicy Chicken: The spiciness was maybe a tad bit more spicier than the Sweet and Spicy. You can tell visually that the only difference was more pepper flakes. Very delicious but I wish they kicked it up more. Then again, I am a spicy fanatic.
The Crab: The server who brought the crab took it apart and cut it like a butcher and presented it neatly for my friend. On the side was a very spicy paste (spicier than the fried chicken actually), some melted butter and another hot red liquid I forgot to try.
My friend loved the crab and me and the others agreed it was cooked well. If you really like Asian steamed crab in its essence, this place is a pretty good place to get it.
Overall for the chicken, I wish the cuts were smaller (I don’t like a huge fried breast in my pile of chicken), have it a bit more crunchier, and for the saucy ones, have a bit less sauce, or have a more stickier sauce that clings to the chicken better.
Have you heard of Chino Banditio? It’s a Mexican-Asian fusion restaurant except it combines the crappiest Mexican food with the crappiest Chinese food. It’s alright, but it literally the worst of both worlds in a foodie perspective.
Anyways, Crazy Chicken and Crab occupy this huge space. It even has the old Panda Bandito statue sitting in the front. They added some artwork. There’s a painting of chickens playing guitars on what looks like a stage so it looks like they plan to add some musical event later on in their restaurant journey.
The server set up 2 metal buckets filled with forks and knives and square plates which were very functional. You would give a fork and knife to a friend and then use these giant metal buckets to put your bones or shells into them. The forks were very skinny with the main intention of skewering chicken and the handles were comfy to hold. Overall, nothing wrong with the silverware. It did its job.
It took us about an hour and a half for us to get our chicken. However, I admire the server’s resilience in dealing with this situation. Especially with a new restaurant, it’s super tough to really work out all the kinks. We know something went wrong with the kitchen but it’s really none of our business to find out. When I peeked my head through there to investigate (because I’m a jerk) it looks like they were understaffed so someone must have walked out or something. Maybe they ran out of inventory because they were so busy.
Either way, because of the wait, we got some free coleslaw, which was alright. I wish the servers gave us more napkins and filled our water better but I think they were under so much stress, that they had to let it pass.
I know it’s a new restaurant but it’s still important data to note. I was fuming mad I waited so long. However, their food is pretty darn good so I have high hopes for this restaurant and I wouldn’t want it to suffer because of long wait times. I know it will get better.
With 4 plates of chicken split between 4 people, we had the bill to be around $13 dollars with some of us even taking food home. This place is very affordable with a large group.
There are about three pages worth of options for us to eat. The menu is simple but for the purpose of the restaurant, it works. They have appetizers, sides such as fried rice, French fries and coleslaw, and of course, a whole page dedicated to chicken.
You know what would make this place amazing? A lot of beer. I have a feeling if they do well, they will get a liquor license.
Crazy Chicken and Crab has the potential to be amazing. If they can serve gigantic piles of chicken for a good price and have alcohol to sell, they will be the next hot spot for Asian people to eat and drink the stuff.
Being the only solely Korean fried chicken place in the Valley, I want to say, support this place! Sure there are some kinks they have to fix, but supporting places like this will promote good, ethnic food to the Phoenix area. And that is what we need.