Flatiron Lunch: Atomic Wings Joins Forces with KalBQ for a Whole Lot of Options

A quick little bit of Flatiron Lunch news before we get to the review… Mad Park News confirmed this week the dates of this year’s spring Mad. Sq. Eats extravaganza. So get ready for May 3!  Now back to your regularly scheduled programming.  Every Friday we go south of the ML boundaries in search of a delicious lunch. Sometimes it’s Murray Hill south or the Flatiron District, sometimes Gramercy and everything in between- but we just like to call it Flatiron Lunch.

So, over on Lexington Avenue something interesting happened at Atomic Wings. Atomic Wings itself is carrying on as normal with boneless buffalo wings, chicken sandwiches, burgers, etc. But, it got more interesting with the addition of KalBQ, a Korean Mexican BBQ spot sharing the space.

With the combination of these two menus, I was confronted by an overwhelming number of choices. Am I in the mood for wings, fried chicken, burgers, more traditional Korean food or Mexican Korean fusion? For $5.99, they offer a lunch special from 11am-3:30pm. With choices of 5 boneless wings with regular or waffle fries, buffalo chicken salad (with no fries) or fried or grilled chicken sandwich with regular or waffle fries. If you are into this deal, but you miss the lunch time frame (tell your boss that lunch is more important than xyz project) or if you want more options, they also have similar combo meals for $9.95. The combo meals come with waffle fries plus a soda or water and your choice of 6 buffalo wings, 6 boneless wings, 3 wings & 3 boneless, chicken wrap, burger or chicken sandwich. Not a bad option to have up your sleeve when you are craving bar food.

Wanting to give Atomic Wings a chance, I ordered (or at least thought I ordered) the $5.99 lunch special with a fried chicken sandwich covered in chipotle BBQ sauce and waffle fries. Instead I got boneless wings with chipotle BBQ sauce and waffle fries. It was a good mistake. Their boneless wings are as good as any I have had in a bar and the chipotle BBQ sauce was completely addictive. And as long as they have a little crisp, I love a waffle fry.

Moving on to the KalBQ menu, I anguished over my decision of what to get. I should tell you up front that I didn’t get the kimchi bacon fried rice ($7.95), but I keep thinking maybe I should have. The menu can also be found here.

Instead, I ordered the Korean/Mexican burrito with bulgogi beef ($8.99) with cheese. It was exactly what you would expect with favors popping out from the rice, shredded kimchi, grilled onions, beans, and the bulgogi.

The size of the burrito was plenty to fill you up for lunch.

For another $2.99, I decided to try the spicy pork taco which was layered with kimchi, shredded lettuce and some sauce that resembled spicy mayo. Other than the fact that they used a flour tortilla and not a corn tortilla, I thought it was a great taco.

And that fact that the spicy sauce poured out of the taco to look like I murdered someone in my take out container was an interesting way to finish lunch.

THE + (What people who like this place will say)

  • I am happy Atomic Wings found a partner to add food diversity to the neighborhood.
  • I hope the Korean Mexican fusion trend never ends.
  • Chipotle BBQ sauce brings the wings to the next level.

THE – (What people who don’t like this place will say)

  • Korilla better executes the Korean Mexican cuisine genre.
  • Atomic Wings isn’t any different than a deli with deep fryer.
  • I understand trying to split expensive NYC rents, but this restaurant combo is a mess.

Atomic Wings and KalBQ, 36 Lexington Avenue btwn 23rd and 24th Streets, (212) 420-9464


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