Does anyone know where I can get duck breast in downtown Toronto?
Whitehouse Meats at St Lawrence Market. Picked one up on the weekend and cooked it yesterday, was mighty delicious as usual.
Chinese grocers almost all buy King Cole Ducks. So do many other grocers and reputable (at least to some on this board) The breed is White Pekin.
The Muscovy is the breed used by most higher end restaurants and is produced by smaller operations.
Here's more info re the differences.
also see the King Cole website mainly for their customer list.
At the end of the day, based on my experience, it's all in the chef's hands. I've had truly horrible hockey-puck-tender duck breast at a high end restaurant, and spectacular duck breast in my kitchen. I'll continue to shop for duck at Chinese grocers.
re: Scary Bill
I agree that even the best product can pale in the hands of someone inept at cooking the product. I remember cooking duck breasts for a chef for his birthday in January then we had duck in his restaurant 4 months later as a special (he had tried to recreate what I had cooked for him). His sous chef had overcooked the breasts and it was truly awful-the chef/friend had said that he hadn't had great duck since his birthday. I felt good, but I worried that his restaurants reputation was tarnished as a result of the work of his sous....
There is a vendor in North St. Lawrence Market, hit him up late in the day, like 3:30 or so. I told him "Whitehouse just said $14 a pound" and he said "Well, I'll do $11 then." It was delicious...he has all kinds of game meats.
North SLM seems to be my answer for about everything in the summer.
It sure can! Especially when you cooking specifically the breast and then to cook it properly to a nice medium rare.....
Here is some more info on King Cole Duck availability
Butcher by Nature
St Jamestown Steak and Chops
The Butcher Block