Monday, February 20, 2012

Beijing Duck in Taipei

Beijing Duck is one of my addictions. This delicious fowl is from Celestial Kitchen

You might have noticed that many of my restaurant and food-related posts are about Beijing Duck. There's a reason why - I absolutely love the stuff. I pretty much love duck in any form. It's like chicken but actually tasty (I hear that chicken used to taste good before it got all processed).

So here, for your pancake-wrapped gorging pleasure, is my listing of good Beijing Duck restaurants (well, one's not a restaurant) in Taipei.

duck congee at Rendezvous
#18-1, Zhongshan N. Road Sec. 1 Lane 105
(closer to enter via Linsen Road near #100 )

This is my pick of all the choices. Wonderful, juicy duck that's firm but not dry and bursting with flavor, with a complementary sauce and a bit of red chili wrapped around the onions...and while service is a bit brusque - they basically ignore you if you want anything after you order unless you insist - it's world's better than Song Chu in that regard. Make reservations, go here.

3F #1 Nanjing W. Road (near MRT Zhongshan)

Also fantastic duck, with an atmosphere that's less "kung fu movie" than Rendezvous. The duck was good, the sauce not so memorable, other dishes were also good, very friendly and prompt service. I'd definitely go back.

#14, Lane 15 Zhongxiao E. Road Sec. 5
(Almost right next to/slightly behind MRT City Hall)

Well, just read the review. Amazing duck (although really no better than Rendezvous'; the main difference is that Song Chu's sauce is luscious which amps up the duck while Rendezvous' is slightly more astringent which complements it) but the service leaves a lot to be desired. Good duck or no, I won't go back.

Too bad the service at Song Chu left me bitter, because I loved the sweet, sweet duck

02 2708 4242 
A friend really liked this place on his first visit, but when we all went together we agreed that the duck was a bit dry. It was pretty good, but not quite up to Celestial or Rendezvous (or even Song Chu, sad to say).

All over Taipei!

You won't be getting a high-end gourmet experience with duck from one of these blue food trucks, but at NT250 for half a duck (which is too much for one person but barely feeds 2) you can't go wrong on price, and with the food truck craze sweeping the US, being able to say that you got dinner off the back of a truck and it's Beijing Duck, so you can stick that in your mobile taco and suck it, well, who can resist? And the duck isn't bad. It's not going to elevate you to new heights of culinary rapture but it's just fine for an evening in. Plus the stir-fry of all the non-breast duck with chili and basil is always fantastic.

...and more. I know there's at least one place in Shi-da with carry-out duck only that's pretty decent, and I've seen a place near Taipower Building, but these are the ones I've tried. I've had the duck from Shi-da and it's pretty decent, but I can't seem to track down the address.

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