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Mar 4, 2009 04:32 PM

Duck Jook @ Just Koi in Dublin

Finding myself hungry and a little hungover one rainy Sunday pointed me toward Just Koi in Dublin in search of jook. This was my first time to this casual noodle joint. I laughed when I saw the small tea house style chairs here that others have complained about. I was seated in the hallway connecting the two dining areas, which gave me a good vantage point on the barbecue station. I saw several orders of Peking duck being sliced expertly, and I want to return to try it.

But for me this morning, I needed some comforting jook (rice porridge). Several flavor combinations are available here, and I asked my waitress if the duck and pickled veggies one was good. She beamed and nodded that it had good flavor. She didn’t steer me wrong. The jook had a nice creamy texture, flavored with good stock. Strips of roast duck with the tasty, defatted skin were laced through the serving with chopped bits of pickled veggies that were a good foil for the richness of the meat. Nice garnishes served separately included crispy wonton skins, scallions, roast peanuts, and more pickled veggies. I was warmed through and through and ready to face the day.

Just Koi
4288 Dublin Blvd, Dublin, CA 94568

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  1. This sounds so good, how much was it?

    3 Replies
    1. re: DezzerSF

      I can't find my receipt to tell you exactly. But I do recall being struck by the fact that this cost me less than my recent jook repast at Hing Lung in SF Chinatown. So around $10, inclusive. Great value to have this casual place with Koi Palace quality, plus free parking.

        1. re: Chandavkl

          Thanks, and I'll mention that it had fine shreds of fresh ginger too. Wish I had some now!

      1. I think their food is good enough, but the service is non-existent. I've been there twice for lunch and each time, we had to flag down the servers multiple times to order, get the check, etc... If they improved their service, I would be more inclined to return or recommend Just Koi.

        2 Replies
          1. re: Melanie Wong

            Two noodle soup dishes. The first one was a shrimp dumpling noodle soup, and the second was the beef stew noodle soup. The shrimp dumpling was good and had a clean tasty broth and was probably the better of the two. The beef stew was a bit sinewy and tough, though decent flavor.

            I work nearby so it's a convenient place to frequent. I just wish the chairs were more comfortable and that the waitstaff paid more attention.

        1. Melanie,

          We like the place a lot. The food is very good and prices are excellent so it makes for a very good value. I don't mind the chairs and I think they are a clever design. However, the table legs seem to get in the way of my knees. And the well where they store the condiments/sauces is a little awkward once the table is full of food!

          But, you're right about easy access and parking!

          And, Koi Garden, upstairs is very good for dim sum. There used to be a very good dim sum house in Pleasanton, Tri Valley Seafood but that was a while back. They changed hands and the new owners don't do dim sum nearly as well as before.

          So Just Koi and Koi Garden have become a regular haunt for us.

          I wish I could get the Streby's to come out here!


          4 Replies
          1. re: jamesq

            Just Koi doesn't have much seating. Unless you count the outdoor tables, the kitchen seems larger than the dining area. To keep those prices, they've really crammed in seats and don't make it comfortable to linger, I guess. But the quality is quite good, and it's actually more pleasant eating there than jook joints in SF Chinatown. Those chairs are a traditional design, and I prefer them to the barrel-shaped stools that some tea houses use, so pick your poison. I've been to Koi Garden once, for the dim sum chowdown there. It was good, but a step down in service and flavor from Koi Palace in Daly City. But I'd try it again to see if it was just an off day.

            1. re: Melanie Wong

              Koi Palace' service is nothing to write home about, and you say Koi Garden is even a step down from KP? That's not good.

              We've been to Just Koi and had no service problems. The place is so small you can practically reach out to grab a waiter as he/she is passing by.

              Slightly unrelated, but the Koi in Thunder Valley casino is actually very good, albeit very expensive if you don't have a coupon.

              1. re: PeterL

                The last time I was at Koi Palace, the service was much better than before. This was shortly after lunching at Koi Garden, so the contrast was stark.

                My brother looked at the photo and said, "the bowl's filled to the rim, how'd they get it your table?"

                1. re: Melanie Wong

                  The opening staff at Just Koi all migrated upstairs to Koi Palace when it finally opened months late. Service had been really good at Just Koi during that time, they were really professional. But when Koi Palace opened, all the new additional staff they had to hire because it's so big dwarfed the experienced servers that came from Just Koi. And then all the staff at Just Koi were brand new. I didn't recognize a single server! In the end, bad service at both places. What a disaster.