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The struggle is so real when eating Peking duck; meat to cucumber ratios, how many slivers of scallion lay in the pancake, and how large to go when dolloping sweet bean sauce, the best method to fold (burrito tuck or Napoli roll style), mad concentration to ensure it doesn't unravel onto your plate...
Practise, gastronauts, makes perfect.
Here are five restaurants where you can refine your Peking duck wrapping skills:
Straight off the bat, the American Restaurant has a misleading name. From its bare, minimalistic interior to the waiters who just might have worked here more years than you’ve been alive, there is nothing American about the American Restaurant. But the Peking duck is pretty legitimate – thinly sliced and perfectly roasted, the American Restaurant has long been the go-to place for this Beijing delicacy.
20 Lockhart Rd, Wan Chai
2. Spring Deer
Located on the first floor of a nondescript building and above a bunch of old-school tailors in Tsim Sha Tsui is Spring Deer. The Peking duck is consistently good and as authentic as it gets with its juicy meat and crisp, textured skin. Again, another bizarre name that bears no relevance to the cuisine, no deer are harmed in the making of your meal, perhaps establishing that a Peking duck meal is both satisfyingly delicious and highly confusing.
1/F, 42 Mody Road, TST
With not two, not three, but six locations around Hong Kong, it’s safe to say you’re never too far away from nursing that Peking duck craving. This elegant restaurant is a great choice due to its more relaxed environment (and higher likelihood of English-speaking waiters) for tourists and those new to the art of the Peking duck.
Shop B1, Basement 1, Alexandra House, Central
3/F, Star House, TST
Four more locations – addresses found here
4. Mott 32
Although primarily a Cantonese restaurant, Mott 32 specialises in signature Beijing dishes such as the Peking duck with a contemporary take on it. The Peking duck is applewood-roasted and served up on three different plates: one that’s just the skin, one of meat and one that is a combination of the two. Mott 32 is one of the more expensive options, but the dining experience, complemented by an interior of tastefully selected Chinese paintings and silkscreen walls, is far superior to many other Peking duck restaurants.
Basement of Standard Chartered Building, 4-4A Des Voeux Road, Central
5. Sha Tin 18
It’s out of the way, but very much worth the trek for what many argue to be the best Peking duck in town. Nestled on the fourth floor of the Hyatt Regency, the Peking duck is served first with a sprinkle of sugar, second with garlic and ginger and finally sliced to enjoy with your pancakes. Sha Tin 18 is the priciest option of them all but its service and the ambience of a five-star hotel, makes the experience truly unbeatable.
18 Chak Cheung St, Hyatt Regency, Sha Tin