The Search For Bourbon Chicken Leads Us Back to Hop Won

Last week, we received a tweet from Phoenix_3_Tears with the question:

“Do you guys know of a place where they sell Bourbon Chicken? Like the ones back in Manhattan Mall?”

That sent us on a search. We hadn’t heard anything about the confusingly named dish since DC Fusion Cafe closed, but we found out that Hop Won Express, Hing Won’s twin sister, has a Bourbon Chicken daily special on their menu for $6.47.

This was the first time I ever tried bourbon chicken. I was pleased. They serve up a ton of meat, they ask you if you want broccoli (I did), and there’s plenty of rice. It’s a dry dish with no sauce — just tender, charred chicken with a hint of sweetness and saltiness (probably soy sauce) over simple white rice (but you can ask for fried rice, too).

It’s also very quick… hence the name Express. I was in and out in about two minutes.

So, hopefully this will answer Pheonix’s question. Any die hard bourbon chicken fans out there who can critique? Anyone know of another place that serves bourbon chicken? Let us know in the comments.

Hop Won Express, 139 E. 45th St. (btw. Lex+3rd), 212-661-4280


  • a couple years ago i started to look for a bourbon chicken place in manhattan but eventually quit ( the picture above looks ok, but it’s not the same as the ones you get at the mall. no sides like mac and cheese and mashed potatoes, and the best part of bourbon chicken is the juice they put over the chicken and rice.

  • since you mentioned it, Hing Won has it as well…

  • Every mall food court outside of NY that has a “Chinese” food outlet (think ‘Wok and Roll’, ‘Wok Around The Clock’, etc.) has a “bourbon chicken” product, it seems to be one of the basic staples in all of them.

    The problem is that the food in these little outlets is reliably terrible (notice the quotes above when I say “Chinese” food – it’s the furthest thing from authentic), so the effect of the bourbon chicken is more or less a dry, pan-fried chicken that tastes like it was smothered in maple syrup and then put under heat lamps.

    Now that I know Hop Won has it, I’ll be stopping by since it’s got to be more of a real-er deal with better ingredients. (I wouldn’t know what the actual real deal is since I’ve only had the mall-food-court version).

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