North Korea is notorious for its food shortages, and its refusal to trade with western countries.

So when a Google Maps explorer browsing around North Korean capital Pyongyang came across a KFC they did a double take.

While the map entry is genuine, the restaurant is not related to the Kentucky Fried Chicken outlets that you might know from your local high street.

Its official name is Chicken Specialised Restaurant. Opened in 2008, the fried chicken outlet is one of a number of restaurants that were launched to cater to North Koreans’ desire for a change from traditional Korean food.

But the official name “Chicken Specialised Restaurant” didn’t really stick, and it’s known by locals and visitors alike as KFC.

It’s located at the edge of a densely-populated and central part of the North Korean capital, on Chilsongmun Street between the Arch of Triumph and the Chollima Statue, and it’s popular with the small number of tourists that visit the isolated dictatorship.

The food on offer is mainly, as you might imagine, fried chicken. But there’s also a range of traditional Korean noodle dishes on offer, including the famed cold noodle delicacy Naengmyeon.


  • Disgusted customer finds full chicken head in her box of KFC hot wings

It’s not a takeaway in the western sense, offering private dining rooms and table service from uniformed waitresses.

According to North Korean travel specialists Koryo Group, a meal at Chicken Specialised Restaurant will set you back anything from about £2 and £7 per person.

It’s picked up a few positive reviews – unlike KFC's Northwich branch here the UK.

On Trip Advisor, the chicken joint has a whopping 175 ‘terrible’ ratings against just 11 ‘Excellent’.

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One especially brutal review from a customer that was clearly some sort of gravy connoisseur read: “This KFC is the most revolting KFC ever.

“The staff are always unclean: clumpy gravy… wrong orders. Every time we complained [we were] told by the member of staff that he had just started his shift but had dried gravy all down his shirt, and had really greasy hair which he ran his hands through and grabbed our chicken .

“We ordered 2 gravy boxes that had no gravy in them, just cold greasy chicken – never ever again!”

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