TKO opening in East Atlanta this week for Korean fried chicken, egg roll taquitos

The eatery will open Dec. 9 as a stall in the Southern Feed Store food hall at 1245 Glenwood Ave. SE, offering lunch, dinner and weekend late-night hours.

Short for “The Korean One,” TKO was launched by chef Lino Yi in April 2021, popping up at Atlanta restaurants including Full Commission, Sweet Auburn BBQ, Buteco and Georgia Beer Garden.

The menu, which Yi describes as “familiar yet foreign and foreign yet familiar,” will feature many of the dishes from the pop-up, along with some new items.

Customers can expect to find the volcano hot dog with torched krab salad, eel sauce and Sriracha; Korean fried chicken nuggets with gochujang and spicy mayo; cheesy kimchi fried rice with Gochujang, mozzarella, spicy mayo and TKO kimchi; and egg roll taquitos with beef, hoisin, Sriracha, spicy mayo and nacho cheese.

“Much like my own upbringing, I’m forming a bridge between Korean and American cultures and traditions,” Lino said in a prepared statement. “Growing up, our Thanksgiving dinners had turkey and gravy as well as Korean BBQ and kimchi. There is an amalgamation of new and retro called Newtro in Korean culture. It’s modernized retro, which is something I also want to represent in my food.”

Lino first learned to cook at the Korean restaurant his family owned in Orlando, where he grew up. After moving to Atlanta in 2015, he worked at Makan (later Taiyo Ramen) restaurant in Decatur, and served as a sous chef at Atlanta restaurant Lazy Betty.

Chef Aaron Phillips of Lazy Betty, Juniper Cafe and the forthcoming Humble Pie, and Atlanta beverage industry veteran Carl Van Tyle Gilbert, also co-owner of Juniper Cafe and Humble Pie, will serve as partners in TKO.

Southern Feed Store, which opened at the end of 2021 at 1245 Glenwood Ave. SE in the former Graveyard space, is also home to Buteco, Waffle Bar, Woody’s Cheesesteaks and Gyro Gyro.

TKO’s opening hours are noon-3 a.m. Fridays-Saturdays and noon-10 p.m. Sundays-Thursdays.

1245 Glenwood Ave. SE, Atlanta. instagram.com/tko_thekorean1.

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