Dragon Palace opens in the former home of Al Bae Nae

al bae nae fried chicken 2.jpg
Al Bae Nae's fried chicken (RIP).
Though Korean barbecue joints are everywhere, Korean fried chicken is surprisingly hard to come by in this town. So I was really excited to sing the praises of the glorious, crisp-skinned Korean fried chicken I'd found -- at long last -- at Al Bae Nae, a Korean street food place in an Aurora strip mall.

And then, just before I wrote the review, the joint closed.

Al Bae Nae owner Stephen Lee -- who also owns Q Table BBQ with his sister and James and Lily Kwon, owners of Seoul BBQ, which is located in the same Havana strip mall -- told us then that new owners had already purchased the space and, with a few changes, would open a new restaurant quickly.

True to his word, the turnaround took just a couple of weeks. Last Friday, Dragon Palace opened its doors at the same address.

And like Lee, new owner Jae Han, who's a native of Korea, is also connected to the Kwons: He once managed Seoul BBQ.

But he won't be serving Korean food, fried chicken or otherwise. "It's Mandarin cuisine from northern China," he explains. "It's not much different from Hunan Chinese restaurants, but it's more spicy."

Guess I'll have to keep looking for Korean fried chicken.

If you're after Mandarin cuisine, though, Dragon Palace is open for lunch and dinner.

Location Info

Dragon Palace

2040 S. Havana St., Aurora, CO

Category: Restaurant

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Ok, I'll try Dragon Palace (because I'm a sucker for any Chinese slinging place in Denver), but I'm going to miss Al Bae Nae.  That place was a paen to fried food.   I never tried the chicken, but the fried pork cutlets were light and succulent and tasty. If Iowans and Texans could have seen their way to eating in a distinctly Korean place, the fried meats of Al Bae Nae could have easily made them forget about their hometown favorites.  

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