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David Chang’s Fried Chicken Empire Fuku Expanding to Los Angeles

The Momofuku chef just keeps adding restaurants here

David Chang’s Fuku
Farley Elliott is the Senior Editor at Eater LA and the author of Los Angeles Street Food: A History From Tamaleros to Taco Trucks. He covers restaurants in every form, from breaking news to the culture, people, and history that surrounds LA's dining landscape.

Majordomo chef David Chang’s West Coast empire continues to grow, as news comes today that the Momofuku mastermind and growing TV personality will expand his fried chicken restaurant Fuku to greater Los Angeles this summer. The quick service chain, which has multiple locations in the East Coast, will be part of a new ground floor food hall called SocialEats in Santa Monica, reports the LA Times.

The planned rollout is part of a larger initiative with the K2 Restaurant group to add multiple standalone locations across the city, potentially alongside stadium deals like at the incoming Inglewood NFL stadium that is still under construction. Fuku currently has three standalone locations across New York City, one in Boston, and also numerous concession deals in stadiums from Washington D.C. to Michigan and beyond.

Fuku is a fast casual fried chicken outfit, known for boxes of quarter and half chickens available in different styles, as well as a very popular fried chicken sandwich. The restaurant also serves chicken by the old school bucket, along with sides like waffle fries and slushies. Fuku has popped up the last few years at Coachella as well, so this isn’t the brand’s first presence on the West Coast.

For its first LA-area outlet, Fuku will take up space inside the Gallery Food Hall called SocialEats, functioning as the company calls it a “food hall within a food hall” along tourist-heavy Third Street Promenade in Santa Monica. The location sits just blocks from the beach and already has everything from Paperboy Pizza and Michael Voltaggio’s STRFSH sandwich shop to Dave Beran’s Michelin-starred hideaway Dialogue tucked away upstairs in the back. It’s likely that Fuku will take over some of the space that Sumo Dog recently vacated.

In addition to Chang bringing Fuku west, he is also planning to open up a location of his famed Noodle Bar sometime this year. That restaurant will hit busy La Cienega, in the former Agura space. The Momofuku Empire will also descend again on Las Vegas with a second Majordomo, Chang’s hit Los Angeles restaurant, sometime later in 2019.

Fuku. 1315 Third St. Promenade, Santa Monica, CA.

Disclosure: David Chang is producing shows for Hulu in partnership with Vox Media Studios, part of Eater’s parent company, Vox Media. No Eater staff member is involved in the production of those shows, and this does not impact coverage on Eater.