88 King in Norwalk.....damn good chicken at a Donut-Chinese takeout shop?

88 King in Norwalk.

Looks and sounds like a typical Donuts and Chinese Food Takeout joint right?

A coworker brought these Black Pepper Chicken to a potluck and it blew my mind. Unbelievable crispy and delicious with a little sauce on the bottom. Almost lechon-like but chicken. Stereotyping here but is this some Cambodian recipe?

Pic from Yelp:

I think this place needs a @g_sny treatment.

Hole in the wall Donut-Chinese joint with some damn good chicken.


Good to hear they’re still in business and serving good stuff. Haven’t been there in 20 years but it was quite a find back then. Location is not entirely random as it’s just on the other side of the 91 Freeway from Cerritos/Artesia and that concentration of authentic Chinese food, but it’s enough out of the way that I never made my way back.

1 Like

This is a cool find. My office is a short drive away.

*Apologizing in advance if this is too long & for any grammatical errors😀. If u have the need to criticize, pls be nice or I might forget my PW again & go back to lurking😍

Yay, finally figured out my PW, been lurking & since most of the posts are mostly north of SELACO, this was worth finding my PW. Not many posts coming from this area, I’m not a prolific writer & can no longer eat as much as I used to but I welcome any recs for good eats around this ABC area (Artesia bounded by Cerritos). I know there are better restos beyond but I like to stay close to the area & see what is wtg to be discovered. Yrs ago TonyC rec mandu/mandoo inside the HMart on Pioneer but they closed. So many interesting Indian, Indo/Chinese, Nepalese (Tara’s from Culver City opened on Pioneer), Bangladesh, Korean, Filipino, Cambodian RiceStrings Noodle (same owners as The Shack in LB but this one is mainly noodles—dry & soup), lots of Thai but Americanized, Vietnamese, chains, etc. BTW, I just noticed what looks like a chain of Chicago Pizza With a Twist on South/Pioneer—used to be Scotty’s Burgers for yrs then Angels, both didn’t seem to have customers that when we drove by we’d ask how Scotty’s can stay in biz so long (menu at CPWAT looks to be Indian topping ingredients).

Wanted Chix wings the other day but didn’t want to pay $$ for dry, scrawny wings nor go to Wingstop. As soon as I read Lechon-like, I just had to do a return visit. I had gone yrs ago cause my HSchooler’s former teacher liked this place but I was turned off by dry looking dishes so went to my usual Korean resto next door.

So, focused & with no Korean, Japanese nor Mexican food distractions (they’re all there at the same Ctr), walked in & wasn’t sure which Chix was Lechon-like so the man behind the counter pointed to the what he called popular pepper Chix,confirmed by @JeetKuneBao’s pix. I said they only had a few pcs & thinking they might be dry after sitting at the steam table, I asked if they can make me fresh ones if I pay for 2 orders. He said 15-20 mins, so even tho worried about my 4-legged BFF in the car (I ckd regularly & gave him cold H2O), I said ok. They weren’t so friendly but after I sat down & the woman behind the counter sat in front of me, she confirmed they’re Cambodian, I showed her the pix u posted & told her @JeetKuneBao led me back here. I mentioned the Korean resto in front of their Bldg used to be a bowling alley with Ten Ten’s Hong Kong style meals (I miss those meals). TT opened later @ Pioneer Blvd at the 99 Ranch Mkt; TT deli used to make the best S&P wings but discontinued😂.

This is what they had at the steam table:

Menu with tray of pepper Chix price for those who want to order for parties:

I like char siu but theirs on top left of pix looked too dry—the best is at Jumbo Wok (Pioneer/Del Amo) but go after noon. They’re whole pieces & cut up when u order so they stay juicy, Chix Teri is same, whole pcs then cut. Annie’s in-laws & husband own the place, food turns over quickly cause customers regularly come in so never saw dried up dishes. Annie is very friendly & helpful even if there’s a long line (if there is, she’ll ask her husband to come out of the kitchen to help her.
88 steam table

1 of 2 couples working there, the man to the left told me pepper chix is most popular so I only bought the 2 orders, nothing else. The woman to the right was the one who sat in front of me & told me they don’t usually cook to order cause it’s late. I said it’s 6:10 & I asked what time they close (8:30pm)—fyi.

I gave them cash then I saw this sign, they said cash only so not wanting to lv my fur pet in the car any longer I just said ok + they were already holding my cash.

This Bldg is where alley & TT used to be.
Side biz Bldg—88, busy Mexican resto & Korean (I love their mud fish soup & chili raw crab panchan, I think they’re the only local ones who serve this). Pkg is horribly tight as gets full depending on time. When I go to the Korean resto, I try to go before the lunch crowds, otherwise, if u have a big vehicle ur 3-pt Y turn will end up 10-pt turn (slight exaggeration).

So, drumroll, the pepper chix is what u really want to know—I wouldn’t quite compare to Lechon but not disrespecting @JeetKuneBao’s comment cause ur a better foodie than me. For me, it’s fried chix, no batter but the sauce helped soften a bit. I ate 2 pcs & gave up cause too much chewing. I might go back some time & ask for xtra sauce but not anytime soon—they just weren’t friendly like at other Mom n Pop steam table restos. I did like the little pcs of skin & again if I go back I might ask for xtra. Sorry, I liked the first few bites but after chewing on some small pcs of bones that got mixed with the sauce & too much chewing, I gave up.
$7 for this box, my 2 orders left them with a few more pcs in the metal tray-container so I said I can take the rest cause I thought if they’re that good I might pig out😢.

Addtl pix


To the left of the Crawfish place is Go Hyang Jib & further down is the busy Mexican resto. There are their restos inside the former bowling alley but I have not checked them out. Sorry, it’s been a while, forgot how to edit my response & add addtl comments.

*Ok figured it out—here’s the Bldg where alley & TT used to be & has addtl restos (didn’t get copied in my orig response).


Welcome back, @WeFlipBurgers! Thanks for the report.
Not the same thing, but China Express in the Amor Y Tacos plaza in Cerritos has some really solid salt and pepper-style chicken wings. My coworker introduced me to them because he lives in the neighborhood. I phone in an order for a tray ($20-25) and they fry them fresh. Don’t agree to try to ones sitting in the steamer table.

Thanks @attran99, we go back a few yrs. Glad to read you moved to Whittier, close to La Habra where we used to live many yrs ago. Unfortunately, we never ran into the now closed Red Chili (now Chipotle, ugh) but thanks to ur rec, guess where we are right now? Haven’t been here in a bit & now I know why—bar area is VERY loud but it’s HH so will try to enjoy my meal.

Ok, stop the suspense😃

Thanks for the China Express rec, I actually know about the place & the Chix wings cause I used to work in La Palma for yrs. The former woman & man (owner?) know when I walked in, I only bought the wings w/extra jalapeño peppers. Depending on my time or if they looked fresh, I didn’t mind getting what they had at the steam table. Usually, if I wanted more than 1 order or if what they had didn’t look good, they willingly & nicely cooked fresh ones for me—thanks for reminding me to go back. I liked the female sales person at the OSH garden dept so I would swing by China Express but she moved to the other store. Also don’t work in LP anymore but I still go by on my way to the mechanic.
I’ve read ur comments about Amor y Tacos—agree. We were there this past Tuesday & forgot about Taco Tuesday so wait was 1 hr. Left & ended up at Ashoka on Pioneer. I’ve ordered great mole tamales the first yr AyT opened—so good.
Thanks again…

1 Like

We’ve only been back to Los Compadres sparingly since we moved…it’s not so convenient anymore. But the food remains great…and it’s nice to see that they’ve put some capital into gussying the place up a bit.