Duck de Chine, Beijing China…Thin, crispy lacquered skin, served and sliced right before my eyes…am I in food heaven? I dared to ask myself.
This time, my quest took me to the birthplace of the Peking Duck….. Beijing!
Based on my research, the place to dine was at the Duck de Chine. We found this restaurant inside a modern style Hutong (a little alley leading to a courtyard) with a very traditional yet modern ambiance…..an army of terracotta warriors (must be replicas) combined with a few Bruce Lee lookalikes welcomed each patron and gave them the assurance that indeed “you are in for an action filled culinary delight”.
Upon entering the door, we were warmly welcomed by the hospitable staff in their local language (Mandarin is the national language in China). Be aware that in China, the English language is almost non-existent so make sure you got the English to Mandarin dictionary with you, a pocket translator, google translator or better yet, a true to life translator in the form of a Mandarin speaking friend. But hey, in this restaurant, the menu had an English translation so you could also get by with the point of a finger.
Whilst waiting for our feast to arrive, I can’t help but notice that the owner has given an absolute attention to detail. The traditional and modern décor was complimented by the red table cloths and neatly folded white table napkins. Red lanterns hanging from the ceiling created that romantic atmosphere which always makes me even hungrier.
At last….we heard the sound of the gong! Signifying the arrival of our food, fit for an emperor. The main attraction of course was the Peking duck which was cooked on an open fire. We were mesmerized as each flame kissed the skin of the duck making it hiss and sizzle ….. mmmmm….my mouth was watering at this point. The rendered fat has tenderized the meat and the fusion of spices were creating a beautiful aroma….making me feel uneasy and shift on my seat. Ohhhh…. I cannot wait any longer!
I therefore raised my gaze, looked at the waiter and with pleading eyes, begged him to serve me….. NOW please!
He readily obliged by serving me with delicate slices of these beautiful morsels. Every bite, every taste brings me to ecstasy…..
Unfortunately, the climax was short lived because the rest of the dishes were mediocre and made me weep in frustration….so I preferred to forget what happened after my experience with the perfect Peking duck.
Story of my life? Well….I hope not…wink wink!