Dabokhyang delights taste buds of Koreans with mild spiciness of tongue numbing Chinese malatang

신태섭 기자l승인2021.11.25l수정2021.11.25 11:28






▲ Dabokhyang / CEO Piao Hu


Malatang, a Chinese street food, is selling hot in South Korea. It was known to originate from Sichuan, China, and has been loved by people in Beijing for the last 40 years. Mala is a tongue numbing seasoning made from peppercorn and chili pepper by people of Sichuan to prevent food from being rotten. Talking of hot food, Koreans are second to none and this might be a reason for malatang to create a sensation in the nation at the moment. The food started to spread from Myeong-dong, Seoul, the hottest spot of Chinese tourists, from 3 to 4 years ago. However, not all Koreans loved the food due to strong spice and flavoring. So, some malatang restaurants moderated the taste for Koreans and a South Korean malatang franchise Dabokhyang is rising fast in the dine-out industry. 



Piao Hu, CEO of Dabokhyang, is an ethnic Korean from China. He traveled China in seeking of the three most renowned malatang restaurants and obtained secretes of the making. Back in South Korea, he started localizing the taste and in 2019 opened Dabokhyang which means ‘many luck and fragrance’. Unlike many other malatang restaurants, Hu uses domestically (Korean) grown ingredients to satisfy the Korean taste and he makes the sources used in the food. “Seeing is believing” said someone. We will never know what it tastes like unless we try. Here is what you need to do: have a seat – pick ingredients among 10 kinds of noodles and 30 kinds of vegetables, sausages, hams and rice cakes – weigh the ingredients – choose how hot you want it – pay and pick the number slip – sit while the food is prepared – go and take it when the number is called – sit and enjoy. The broth is relatively tender when compared to firery hot Chinese malatang. If you want it delivered but pick ingredients also, you can do so. The excellent taste and services of Dabokhyang have been proved by the small 39 square meter restaurant in Jeongja-dong, Bundang, that is selling 100 million won ($84,281) a month.


[Joining the Boat]

Dobokhyang welcomes partners who will grow the business together. A 49 square meter restaurant can cost you around 60 million won ($50,568) initial capital except the security deposit of the space to the building owner. No royalty and management fee is required. If you are worried because you have never worked in the food industry, don’t: you can learn how to prepare the food after only 3 days of training and the taste and cooking are the same in all partner restaurants to keep the consistency of the taste and to make the kitchen work simple. More than 40 partner restaurants are operating at the moment and one partner, in particular, is running 3 restaurants alone as the business is rocking. (PowerKorea)

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