Midtown Happy Hour: Baden Baden is All About the Chicken
After mamacita’s out of bounds bender last week at Whiskey Rebel, she’s had a hard time making her way back into midtown proper, so I’m filling in with this week’s happy hour: Koreatown’s Baden Baden.
Baden Baden is one of those hidden Ktown bars that you could pass by a million times without knowing it was there. It’s the way Mad For Chicken/Mono + Mono used to be before they put up that big honking signage.
Despite the sketchy looking entrance, when you get in, the bar is warm and inviting. The mahogany bar and walls make for a comfortable watering hole that stands out from all the other clubby bars and karaoke spots up and down the strip.
The drink list is great for folks who like soju, sweet cocktails or beer that ranges from so-so (Stella) to godawful (Hite). They used to stock Sierra Nevada – it’s still on the list, mocking me – but they haven’t had it in stock in ages. Really, the drinks aren’t my thing here.
Now before you start jumping down my throat about why I’m wasting my time at a Happy Hour where booze isn’t the thing, hear me out. I’ll drink a Stella… if I know it’s going to be washing down their delicious chicken.
The real reason I keep going back is the Baden Baden chicken. It’s a rotisserie chicken, served small (half chicken, $16) or large (whole, $21), that is deep fried before serving, adding a crispness to the skin. It also comes with sides of onion rings or battered fries, both of which are well worth the damage done to your arteries. Fried garlic cloves are tossed in for good measure and are awesome smeared on the chicken.
There are other options on the menu, including saucy hot wings that can be a little soggy and various Korean options that I always swear I’m going to try, but never choose over more chicken. I regularly lament that Baden Baden isn’t open for lunch, but it’s probably for the best that I don’t have the option in the middle of the day.
Baden Baden, 28 West 32nd Street, 2nd floor