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Best Duck in Austin?

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SlickTheCat Aug 1, 2007 03:34 PM

I have only recently discovered how much I really love duck when prepared well.

Recently I traveled to Birmingham, AL where I dined at Hot and Hot Fish Club where I had an excellent duck entree:

Oven Roasted Duck Breast and Crispy Confit with Dirty Rice, Haricot Vert, and Red Eye Gravy

What restaurants in Austin do excellent duck?

(I'm actually salivating as I type)

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    scrumptiouschef RE: SlickTheCat Aug 1, 2007 05:40 PM

    Ahhh,Hot and Hot is still terrific? Is Chris Hastings still the chef?Love that joint.Hereabouts my fave Duck source is Din Ho.Grab a whole Duck from the case to the left as you enter the space.Their other roasted meats are good too but the Duck?Oh man,it's good.

    3 Replies
    1. re: scrumptiouschef
      Mersenne twister RE: scrumptiouschef Aug 1, 2007 05:55 PM

      I agree that the Chinese places do it the best.

      No one really seems to do even a decent duck confit.

      1. re: Mersenne twister
        Twill RE: Mersenne twister Aug 2, 2007 08:13 AM

        I'm actually partial to the confit at Chez Nous...but, then again, I love just about any preparation of what a friend refers to as "flying bacon."

      2. re: scrumptiouschef
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        SlickTheCat RE: scrumptiouschef Aug 2, 2007 08:41 AM

        It was our first trip to Hot and Hot - but everyone's food was outstanding. Chris Hastings is still the chef.

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        ashes RE: SlickTheCat Aug 1, 2007 06:38 PM

        I had a nice duck breast recently at Starlite and reviewed it in this thread:(http://www.chowhound.com/topics/407115).

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          SandraCan RE: SlickTheCat Aug 1, 2007 07:14 PM

          I don't believe that they have it on the menu all the time, but when they do, Zoot makes a great duck. It's been awhile since I had it, so I don't remember the details of this dish. I just remember really enjoying it. If you are every in Vegas, you must try the Peking duck at Wolfgang Puck's Postrio. It's the best I have ever had.

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            Sachertorte RE: SlickTheCat Aug 1, 2007 07:37 PM

            I recently had a very good tea smoked duck breast at Mars. A bit pricey, but delicious. I second the comments on the Chinese roast duck at Din Ho, but would also suggest the same at First BBQ in Chinatown Center on North Lamar. It's very good too.

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              sambamaster RE: SlickTheCat Aug 2, 2007 05:58 AM

              A couple of other ideas for duck:
              * Sea Dragon (the original) has a great dish of smoked duck with leeks and ginger. sometimes the duck is a tad dry, but it almost always satisfies and I've probably eaten it 25 times since 1987...ok, maybe 30 times....
              * Asia Cafe had Sichuan smoked duck...also sometimes dry, but also almost always tasty and quite a bargain at about 8-9 bucks for a plate of yummy quacker
              * Ray Tatum at Backstage Steakhouse used to be at Jefferies where he had a deft hand at roasted duck...i didn't see it on the Backstage menu today, but it might pop up from time to time...worth calling to investigate...bet he'd make it with a call ahead to reserve....
              * travel to a near suburb of Austin and visit Brigtsen's where Frank does an amazing roasted duck in which he debones a duck half and roasts it and the skin separately, then places the crisp sheet of skin over the duck to plate it...oh, the suburb is New Orleans!

              1 Reply
              1. re: sambamaster
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                Greg Spence RE: sambamaster Aug 2, 2007 11:08 AM

                You know, Roaring Fork does a very credible roast duck, and sided with their mac & cheese, it's a plate that's hard to top in town.

              2. Bat Guano RE: SlickTheCat Aug 2, 2007 07:16 AM

                Din Ho is the way to go. Theirs is a consistently excellent duck, nicely seasoned and perfectly cooked.

                5 Replies
                1. re: Bat Guano
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                  pankofish RE: Bat Guano Aug 2, 2007 11:36 AM

                  Din Ho.

                  1. re: pankofish
                    tom in austin RE: pankofish Aug 2, 2007 11:53 AM

                    Dude, Din Ho is so freaking good.

                    I used to live in L.A. as a teenager, in the South Pasadena area, where it was about 50% Chinese. I loved getting invited over for dinner by my friends. The food was freaking awesome, and nothing like what I had tried at Chinese restaurants.

                    Din Ho is the only place I've eaten at in Austin that reminds me of that Chinese home cooking. And Din Ho's "duck tacos" are so freaking good they can kick me into feeding frenzy mode.

                    I haven't made it over to this Asia Cafe place folks are raving about. Din Ho is such a jam that if I'm up north and craving Chinese, this is the only place I go.

                    1. re: tom in austin
                      Mersenne twister RE: tom in austin Aug 2, 2007 02:08 PM

                      I doubt there is any duck preparation at Asia Cafe that is good as a roasted duck from Din Ho or First Chinese. They simply don't have the roasting facilities. I had the tea-smoked or Szechuan duck there and it was quite dry and bland.

                      1. re: Mersenne twister
                        rudeboy RE: Mersenne twister Aug 2, 2007 02:16 PM

                        I can verify that......not that Asia Cafe isn't good, but it isn't the same.

                        For some really cheap and tasty roast duck, quick, I often get the "roast duck flat rice noodle soup" at Wok and Roll. I order extra duck and it costs about $10 for enough for two people. They get their duck from someone who does the roasting, then they flash fry in the deep fryer to heat it up. The skin comes out super crispy. That's the only thing that I ever get there any more.

                        1. re: rudeboy
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                          foodiegal71 RE: rudeboy Aug 3, 2007 09:56 AM

                          I have to say that I'm not nearly as impressed with Din Ho now that we have First Chinese. The duck at First Chinese is consistently flavorful and juicy, where I've had duck at Din Ho that was way too dry.

                          Two weeks ago, I had a duck breast entree at Uchi that was pretty good. I can't remember how it was cooked (a 2.5 hour wait led me to get a little tipsy on my favorite Ridge Three Valleys), but it was a medium-rare breast, sliced and fanned out on a miso sauce and served with a sweet corn relish and white asparagus. The combinations of the flavors were really good. I would have thought it would all be too sweet, but somehow, it worked.

                          Or else I was really drunk. Could have been either.

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                  rqangel RE: SlickTheCat Aug 9, 2007 07:50 AM

                  Din Ho is definitely it. Not as good as it used to be but it is authentic Cantonese style bbq duck. The bbq pork is great too, but not as tasty as the duck. Very succulent.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: rqangel
                    Mersenne twister RE: rqangel Aug 9, 2007 09:32 AM

                    Isn't bbq duck more of a northern style than Cantonese?

                    1. re: Mersenne twister
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                      yushi RE: Mersenne twister Aug 9, 2007 10:26 AM

                      Not necessary. There are Cantonese style, Beijing style, .... In fact, for duck, there are tons and tons of dishes in Chinese cooking. We see only few here. Too bad. Duck is my favorite.

                  2. luckyfatima RE: SlickTheCat Aug 13, 2007 04:35 AM

                    Din Ho. First Chinese is good, but Din Ho is still superior.

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                      jennrotten RE: SlickTheCat Aug 13, 2007 07:15 AM

                      I recently took my sweetie out to South Congress Cafe to celebrate my new job. I'm a vegetarian, so I didn't taste it myself, but he had the gumbo (which contains duck) and the smoked duck breast. He didn't seem to notice the duck in the gumbo, so that clearly wasn't memorable, but the smoked duck was a hit. You have a choice of glazes, and he picked the honey glazed with apple habanero salsa, which was apparently fantastic.

                      1. williemac RE: SlickTheCat Sep 5, 2007 07:03 PM

                        how about the ginger duck at suzi's on s. lamar!

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                          foodputa RE: SlickTheCat Sep 8, 2007 12:07 PM

                          Not trying to hi-jack your thread, but since were on the subject of Duck. What are the sources in Austin to purchase whole duck? I've been wanting to do my own confit, but Duck isn't something I see in the butcher's shelf

                          6 Replies
                          1. re: foodputa
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                            renz RE: foodputa Dec 13, 2007 12:18 PM

                            It's also always available at Fiesta and many HEBs.

                            1. re: renz
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                              foodiegal71 RE: renz Dec 13, 2007 12:49 PM

                              Also at MT Supermarket in the Chinatown Center on North Lamar.

                              Now, can I please have some locally raised duck? It's got to be somewhere in the area.

                              1. re: foodiegal71
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                                storefronteats RE: foodiegal71 Aug 13, 2008 12:45 PM

                                Sebastian Bonneu of Countryside Farm Products ("custom processed farm raised meats") has been at the downtown Farmers Market for almost a year. He sells chickens, ducks, and roosters. I don't know if he has all varieties each week, or if he goes to the Triangle market, but I've definitely had my eye on the duck and am waiting for a reason to splurge. The number on his card is 512-363-2310.

                                1. re: storefronteats
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                                  storefronteats RE: storefronteats Jan 16, 2009 06:14 AM

                                  As a follow-up, I roasted two of Sebastian's ducks for separate occasions over the holidays. I roasted them very simply with salt and pepper as he recommended and they were fanTAStic. Perfectly cooked and everyone agreed they were delicious.

                                  1. re: storefronteats
                                    rudeboy RE: storefronteats Jan 16, 2009 10:38 AM

                                    Just wondering....does he also have goose?

                                    1. re: rudeboy
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                                      ieathereforeiam RE: rudeboy Jan 16, 2009 02:58 PM

                                      sometimes. call him and ask.

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                            monkeypoxsarsavienflu RE: SlickTheCat Aug 13, 2008 11:52 AM

                            wink typically is spot on, much more so than chez nous that has been gore for the last two years. wait till winter, of course, and many of the higher end restaurants will rotate great duck dishes into their menu. watch for the driskell, zoot, aquarelle and if all else fails suck it up and drive to houston.

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