“At first, we didn’t think we were qualified enough to compete with other great entrepreneurs in Singapore,” wrote Annabelle and her aunt Eon of being nominated for this year’s eAwards. After winning, the humble duo, who co-own Korean fried chicken restaurant Kko Kko Na Ra and Korean charcoal BBQ house The Go Gi Jip, wanted to thank their customers over the years, then vowed, “We will always try our best to be better.”
They’re already doing great! Both hail from Jeolla Do, a province known for having some of Korea’s best food. It’s where Eon’s mother regularly cooked for everyone in their village during festivals and holidays, which helped to turn Eon, who is the brands’ head chef, and Annabelle into the talented cooks they are today.
But how did they come to launch their restaurants? “While I was studying in Singapore, my aunt used to visit me to avoid the cold winter in Korea,” shares Annabelle. “She and all her friends missed authentic Korean food – especially Koren fried chicken! – while they were here.” After one such trip, Eon went home and spent months perfecting her fried chicken recipe with a food scientist. She finally returned to SG just after her niece graduated from high school – and they opened Kko Kko Na Ra in 2007.
About The Finder Expatpreneur Awards
In 2017, The Finder debuted its first-ever Expatpreneur Awards to honour foreign-born entrepreneurs running successful expat-owned businesses in or from Singapore. In 2019, 22 expats were awarded for their tremendous dedication. This 2020, a new batch of 19 winners has been unveiled! All of them have one thing in common: Their brands help people “live well in Singapore” – The Finder’s core mission.
By Kirstie-mae Baptist, The Finder Issue 303
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