Two weeks ago, Helen and I had a chicken craving. Since Helen’s quite knowledgeable in the realm of Korean food (she’s of Korean descent, in case you’re wondering), she recommended either Bon Chon Chicken or Baden Baden. She told me she hasn’t tried the latter and was curious about it, Restaurant Forte Baden Baden (that’s whole name) was our dinner spot for the evening.
It seems popular with the Korean restaurants that serves good chicken dish, at least from what Helen describes them to me, are bars and it gets louder as the night goes on. The good thing was the fact that we arrived at 5:30, that the place was relatively quiet since there weren’t many diners here and the hip-hop/pop music playing from the speakers weren’t jacked up to the maximum volume (but did happen at the end of our dinner).
After we ordered our food, the only banchan of sorts was a small bowl of sweet, pickled daikon. These cubes of crunchy, sweet-sour veggies were tasty…and I’m getting hungry and restless for real food.
After waiting for nearly ten minutes, the Baden chicken finally came out and I’m more than ready to consume my quarter of chicken (we ordered the half portion of chicken). The chicken’s skin was crisp while the meat was moist and nicely seasoned. I found out that it’s first roasted in the oven then it’s deep fried to accomplish that crunchy exterior. NOM NOM. The onion rings tasted like the frozen ones you find in your local supermarket, so it’s nothing worth raving about.
Then our appetizer, hot chicken wings, arrived. Yes, strangely they went backwards with our order but it’s an all-chicken dinner so it doesn’t really matter to us. Anyway, the wings were mildly spicy since neither of us could handle the masochistic pain of intense peppery heat and we requested it to be that way. The wings had a nice crunchy exterior and the meat was still moist and tender with a subtle kick of peppers. It tastes fine but I’m not hitting an epiphany with them.
Even though the dinner was generally good, not spectacular, I was hungry enough to eat it all. Since they don’t serve desserts here and I’m want some kind of sweet, we paid the check and walked around K-town in the search for one.
We walked a few doors from Baden Baden to Koryodang since I’m curious about this bakery for a while and having a friend who’s familiar with it helps. But as I’m perusing their display cases of what mostly contains a lot of buns and a few cakes, I don’t feel compelled to buy one since I wasn’t craving bread of any form.
But Helen wanted to get herself a coffee popsicle, which costs $1. It’s inexpensive but when I took a bite of her treat, it’s tastes like icy, slightly watered down, milky coffee. She likes it since she doesn’t like the flavor of robust coffee (for your reference, she prefers Dunkin’ Donuts over Joe‘s – a shame in my opinion).
I still felt deprived of dessert after we’re walking away from K-town and since Helen never went to Shake Shack and she’s does have some stomach space for more sweets, so we walked down there.
Fortunately, we just wanted custard. The burger line was probably a twenty-five minute wait until it’s our turn if we were to join in, while the custard line was a five minute wait. Since I wanted something different and Helen’s indifferent with the custard flavor, we just went for the flavor of the day, almond apricot custard. The smooth, thick, creamy custard was nicely balanced between the nutty, slightly floral almond with the subtle tartness of the apricot. Mmmm…this was a good way to end our evening.
Restaurant Forte Baden Baden
28 W 32nd Street
New York, NY 10001
31 W 32nd Street
New York, NY 10001
Southeast corner of Madison Square Park