ChiKo Brunch is the Only Brunch FOR ME
Orange chicken should always be served with waffles
ChiKo, a fast casual Chinese-Korean concept by Scott Drewno and Danny Lee, launched BRUNCH this month at their DuPont location and it’s basically the only place you’ll find me eating brunch besides the Hangry District HQ (my house). Light on the eggs and heavy on flavor, this brunch menu will have you counting down the minutes to the weekend. Here’s what it looks like:
The intimate, casual dining room is always packed and it’s easy to drop in for a quick delicious bite, take some to-go, or even order it for delivery when you’re craving their infamous half-a-cado salad or orange-ish chicken. More on that below…
Always start with the snacks. Nothing whets my appetite more than pickled, fermented, funky snacks. I love to nibble on ChiKo’s turmeric daikon, kimchi, chilled XO shrimp and whatever other seasonal flavor combinations they have of the moment. The steamed rice with furikake butter is THE best hangover cure, especially when it’s topped with their house made kimchi. Anyway, on to the main event.
Shrimp and Oh My Grits
A pile of succulent sweet shrimp floats atop thick and creamy rice porridge. Each spoonful is better than the last and we could not get enough. The ChiKo spin on this classic dish features spicy XO sauce, fried basil, crushed peanuts and dried black beans. It’s super savory, completely satisfying and we ate it all in less than ten bites. NO REGRETS.
Gravy my buns and call me a biscuit
Maybe you’re in the mood for something completely indulgent and reminiscent of your childhood on the Eastern shore. If so, the Sichuan biscuits and gravy are what you need on a Saturday morning to accompany your sunglasses and Ibuprofen. Simple and straightforward with Freed’s biscuits, spicy sausage gravy, and a humble poached egg. Topped off with lots of crispy basil and fried garlic, you’re going to want to dive right into this saucy pool. What I love the most about this dish is that they’re not trying to top everything with 17 poached eggs. I’m very happy with just the one, which adds unctuous richness to the spicy dish. Also, #yolkporn has got to go - it’s had its moment, can we all just stop?
Chiko Breakfast Sammy
Griddled Spam. Fluffy egg. Melty cheese. Griddled bread. WHAT ELSE DO YOU NEED!? For my hangry people - this breakfast sammy will cure whatever ails ya. The sandwich is griddled on the inside but tender on the outside, so you don’t destroy the roof of your mouth. It’s filled with modest ingredients that are treated with the utmost care. The tots are completely addicting with gochujang and furikake and scallions and yummy stuff. I tried to pace myself, but kept going back for more bites of this sammy until no bites remained. ::shrug::
Orange-ish Chicken and Waffles // Honey sesame butter
The orange-ish chicken and waffles at ChiKo is my most craved brunch item. It is absolute perfection. The chicken is super crispy and lightly sauced (more sauce comes on the side DON’T PANIC) in a slightly sweet but very orange-y sauce that’s spicy and fresh. The waffles are served hot with thick pats of honey sesame butter and I will never serve waffles another way. Even eaten cold over the sink for a late night snack, this dish performs. Go hard and make a chicken and waffle sandwich out of it while dunking it into the sauce like I did.
I am very verbal about my dislike for brunch. To me, no one can make breakfast faster or better than I can in my own home, where I know exactly how I like my eggs and exactly how long they’ve been sitting out. That said, this Chinese-Korean take on the trend is something I AM HERE FOR. I prefer Asian breakfast to American, and this combines the best of both cuisines for sunrise dining. Will brunch for ChiKo.
There are now two locations that you can get your hands on ChiKo’s brunch, or lunch, or dinner, or chef’s counter - and it is something I am adamant about recommending. If it makes a difference in influencing you, I recently got engaged and ChiKo is catering my wedding, that’s how good it is.
Can’t wait to see you there soon!!
2029 P St NW
Washington, DC 20036
Sunday – Thursday: 11am – 10pm
Friday – Saturday: 11am – 11pm
CHIKO Capitol Hill
423 8th St SE
Washington, DC 20003
Sunday – Thursday: 5pm – 10pm
Friday – Saturday : 5pm – 12am