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David Chang’s Cult-Favorite, Delivery-Only Chicken Sandwich Debuts In Houston This Week


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Fuku brings crispy, habanero-brined chicken sandwiches and more to delivery apps like DoorDash and UberEats this week 

by Amy McCarthy  Apr 5, 2021, 8:37am CDT
 

Fuku, the fried chicken chain from vaunted New York City chef David Chang, will officially make its debut in Houston this week.

Thanks to technology, Houstonians won’t have to wait in line to get their hands on a Fuku chicken sandwich — the Houston outpost of the chain will be open for delivery only. The fast-casual eatery will arrive in Houston via a ghost kitchen operated by REEF, a national company that helps “food entrepreneurs, local restaurants, and national restaurant brands to open and quickly expand their delivery businesses.” 

For the unfamiliar, Chang opened the first outpost of Fuku in New York City’s Hudson Yards development in 2015. The restaurant’s signature chicken sandwich got its start as a secret offering on the menu at Chang’s beloved restaurant Momofuku Noodle Bar, and has since grown into a chain of mostly delivery-only restaurants in cities like Miami, Washington, D.C., and now, Dallas and Houston. 

As far as the food is concerned, expect an extremely tight menu at Fuku, mostly centered around juicy, habanero-brined fried chicken. There’s five different types of sandwiches, including a chicken burger topped with American cheese, and the “C.B.R,” which adds buttermilk ranch, pickles, and crispy bacon to the formula. The menu also boasts waffle fries and sweet-and-spicy chicken tenders.

https://houston.eater.com/2021/4/5/22367805/david-chang-fuku-delivery-only-restaurant-houston-open

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The Houston Launch of David Chang’s Delivery-Only Restaurant Fuku Was a Total Shitshow

 

Chicken sandwich fans faced three hour waits, missing orders, and more delivery app drama on Fuku’s launch day 

by Brittanie Shey@brittanieshey  Apr 8, 2021, 2:12pm CDT
 

The Tuesday launch of chef David Chang’s fried chicken chain Fuku in Texas appears to have been an absolute mess, with dozens of comments on various social media channels citing delayed orders, cold food, maskless food service workers and other issues with the new delivery-only restaurant.

The trouble started in the morning on Tuesday, April 6, when the restaurant, which was supposed to launch at 11 a.m. in Houston, was unavailable on several delivery apps, including DoorDash, Grubhub, and UberEats, according to posts on Facebook. Once it finally appeared, diners reported orders taking anywhere from 90 minutes to 3 hours for delivery. One Twitter user said that their food arrived three hours late, with missing items and cold food. A commenter on Instagram said their order included just four fries and was missing the sauce the diner paid extra for.

That’s if the food arrived at all. Several commenters posted that their delivery drivers cancelled their orders after waiting several hours. One person wrote that their order from UberEats never arrived, and another wrote their their order did eventually arrive — a day late.

By Wednesday afternoon, commenters on Fuku’s Instagram page were reporting to each other that the Houston location had already closed — with no response whatsoever from Fuku itself. It’s unclear if the location sold out or was just too overwhelmed by the hype to continue taking orders. Eater has reached out to the company for comment, and will update this post with more details as they become available. 

Though Houston posters were most vocal about their negative experiences, diners in Dallas also faced issues. One Dallas diner wrote that their chicken sandwich arrived raw, and another wrote that employees at the North Texas location weren’t wearing masks “even though the website for Fuku is all about safety.”

Fuku’s famed chicken sandwiches got their start as an off-menu offering at Chang’s beloved restaurant Momofuku Noodle Bar. When the sandwich proved to be popular in its own right, Chang launched a stand-alone Fuku restaurant in New York City’s Hudson Yards development in 2015. Fuku has since grown into a chain of mostly delivery-only restaurants in cities like Miami, Washington, D.C., and now, Texas.

The proceeds from the Houston location’s first day of sales were meant to be donated to the Southern Smoke Foundation. “Food arrived cold,” wrote one commenter on Instagram “I’m glad the money is going to Southern Smoke at least.”

 

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I think they should have done a soft opening to get their pupu platter together and then break it slowly to more media. I saw plugs about this almost everywhere.

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