Well-known Japanese chain DONDONYA has several branches throughout Hong Kong, including in Kowloon and the New Territories. Its modern Japanese interior design creates a comforting and casual dining experience, and the friendly staff and delicious food make it all the more enticing.
The restaurant itself has been around since 2010, making it its mission to serve up authentic donburi (Japanese rice bowls). Utilising the best ingredients available, such as specially selected Aomori rice and high-quality meat, it’s obvious that DONDONYA takes its donburi pretty darn seriously.
Hanadori Karaage’s General Manager of Business Development, Mr Tetsuya
The latest addition at DONDONYA comes through their collaboration with Hanadori Karaage from Oita Prefecture in Japan, the home of Japanese fried chicken. Now, to some of you, fried chicken is merely a comfort food – delicious, filling and easy to eat. DONDONYA’s new Nakatsu karaage donburi, however, takes this age-old delight to new heights, making the well-loved comfort food something of a masterclass in refinement. How has this classic been refined, you ask? Well, kiddos, buckle your seat belts and put on your helmets, because we’re in for a crispy ride.
DONDONYA specifically uses Japanese chicken for this limited-time offer, which they marinate for up to 12 hours in a concoction containing soy sauce, sake and various vegetables to give the chicken a sweet yet not overpowering flavour. The marinated chicken is then deep-fried to perfection (and, boy, do we mean perfection). We’re not quite sure how they manage to make the outer layer so captivatingly crispy with the inside remaining so tender and juicy, but we are blissful in our ignorance. The nanban sauce that comes alongside the chicken (which is something of a secret speciality) was also warmly welcomed by our already-sated palates.
Accompanied by miso soup and a refreshing side salad, this dish certainly gave us our money’s worth – and then some.
If you’re looking for a challenge, the MEGA karaage donburi ($448) is up for grabs. Weighing over 3kg, this mountain of chicken is quite the climb, so put on your hiking boots and double-knot your laces, because it’s about to get rough. Bring along three other hungry hikers for this 15-minute challenge, which, if beaten, gets you the entire thing for free! Bibs are encouraged in the case of spillage, which is pretty much inevitable considering the enthusiasm with which you’re bound to attack this peak. There are four tasty dipping sauces available: Hanadori Karaage’s secret nanban sauce, black truffle, curry salad and tartare. The chicken alone was delicious, so we imagine the sauces will take it to the next level.
Make sure you come prepared, as the MEGA karaage donburi is only available at some shops and must be reserved at least one day in advance. There’s always gonna be another mountain, and this time you’re gonna want to move it into your belly.
If you’re after a special donburi, unlike anything you’ve ever tried before (assuming you’ve never travelled to Oita Prefecture), this is a welcome treat. In addition, if you fail the MEGA karaage donburi challenge, it’s still a tonne of food and the price point isn’t ridiculous, considering the amount. This offer is only up for a limited time, so be sure to head to a participating DONDONYA ASAP!
For DONDONYA shop locations, click here
This write-up is based on a complimentary media tasting provided in exchange for an honest review and no monetary compensation. The opinions expressed here represent the author’s.
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