Approaching their one-year anniversary, Flying Tong has successfully added yet another cuisine to the bustling Enmore Eat-street. Korean Fried Chicken and Beer is sometimes all a girl ever wants, making Flying Tong ever so accessible with it's short stroll from Newtown Station. There is a beautiful charm from Co-Owner Julie, manning the front of house, and the stories of the family's recipes being incorporated here, with some hands-on help from ma, make for a pretty homely and cosy experience when comparing other mindless and vacant service levels elsewhere.
My penchant for fried chicken comes from a former life, when my physical form could afford it more. That said, it's still often craved. The Soy Garlic chicken ($20) is a great starting point for those who can't handle heat. Whilst it's not the most tender chicken I've had my hands on, it's quite crunchy, most importantly, garlicky yet pretty insanely sweet. The coating is thick, so the baby bucket of tangy, bright pickled daikon can come to rescue. I'd order the pickles alone in a giant bucket if I could - but my love for pickle can be saved for another day.
If soy garlic is too bland, the Spicy Bomb chicken ($21) might pique your interest more. You best order another Korean Kloud ($8) with that and make use of the pickles as Spicy Bomb lives up to it's name. Its super-spicy yet the fact my face feels somewhat on fire is strangely comforting. The Cheesy Corn ($11) is off-the-charts-good. I probably wouldn't have ever ordered this if it wasn't for the rest of my table. Corn in mozarella is not usually something that is appealing to me but I have drastically changed my mind now. Arriving on a sizzling hotplate, it's salty, sweet and savoury and a soft and stretchy cheesy mess. I'd be lying if I said we only ordered one plate.
The Gogi Fries ($13) are nearly just as good. A small pile of crisp fries are topped with beautiful shredded beef, tender and so soft you really only wish there was more of a serving. Shredded green and white onion, and sriracha mayo top the bowl, and you'll notice the fries will disappear pretty quickly if sharing. There's enough toppings to taste on every bite, and Flying Tong manage a refreshing execution where you're fries aren't immediately soggy in the center from all your extra add-ons.
Please allow yourself discovery of the Night Pancake ($16). Popular in Korean cuisine, known as Pajeon, and essentially a shallow flour-based frittata like cake made of green/spring onion and mixed seafood. The onion is well cooked, seafood is tender, with small pieces of mussel, prawn and calamari hidden throughout. The pancake holds its shape despite everything being cooked well enough for softness inside, leaving crisp top and base. As a word of advice, bring friends who don't fancy food from the ocean, as you won't want to share this one.
As a small, narrow eatery, the size of Flying Tong offers intimacy and comfort, yet speed of service also provides a satisfying quick bite, even pre-show at Enmore Theatre. You'll find fast, yet down to earth service from a pair who simply want to share.