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Hong Kong restaurant reviews

Review: The Drunken Duck has no drunks and one duck dish, but the food is an eclectic surprise

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 17 September, 2015, 5:00pm
UPDATED : Thursday, 17 September, 2015, 5:00pm

It’s hard to know what to expect from a place called Drunken Duck. We figured it would be a bar, but it wasn’t at all drunken (at least on the night we visited), and the drinks list had some really interesting beers (including fruit-based ones) and ciders. Duck on the menu? Yes, but only one item.

The biggest surprise was the menu of eclectic and creative dishes. They sounded tempting, and for the most part, they delivered.

As with so many other restaurants these days, the menu was divided into small plates and big plates, in addition to titbits, salads and puddings. Chilli chicken pops (HK$87) had a thin coating and a gentle spiciness.

Malay-spiced hand-raised pork pie (HK$95) came as a thick wedge of dense meat covered with a light jelly and pastry that was flaky but sturdy enough to hold the filling.

Roast lamb and mint dumplings (HK$91) could be ordered steamed or fried. We chose the steamed option, and the first glimpse inside the bamboo basket didn’t look promising. The dumplings looked deflated, but the resilient skins had a small amount of liquid and a good amount of flavourful meat.

The duck (HK$138 for a quarter/HK$240 for half) has prominent place on the menu. “Steamed, dried then sozzled in Tsingtao and fire-roasted in the duck oven”, it’s like a take on Peking duck, and served with hoisin sauce, cucumber, spring onions and steamed pancakes. The skin wasn’t crisp, and the steamed pancakes were too thick, but the duck meat was moist and tender.

For dessert, the caramelised banana tart (HK$77) needed more bananas or less crust. Sticky pineapple pudding (HK$77) was rich and warm (although we would have liked more of the toffee sauce), and was served with delicious cardamom-infused kulfi  ice cream.

Our waitress was smiling, good-humoured and helpful. 

The Drunken Duck, 44 Staunton Street, SoHo, tel: 2803 0050. About HK$330 without drinks or the service charge