As you walk around central London, it’s hard to escape Yau’s gastronomic influence; founder of outlets like Wagamama, Hakkasan and Busuba Eathai, his new eatery is only a stone’s throw from his Michelin-starred dim sum teahouse Yauatcha.
Finding a home in the 4500 sq ft. space formerly occupied by the The Endurance, Yau and his team embarked upon a complete refurbishment. With the opening repeatedly pushed back, expectations were high.
It's not just Chinese cocktails and street food; in addition to the range of craft beers and cocktails, there's a huge selection of dim sum, curries and snacks, including the likes of crabmeat Foo Young, pan-fried pork and Chinese leaves gyoza, and pork ribs & bitter melon served in black beans. There's also a light option of stir-fry Chinese celery, pumpkin, dried shrimp & prawn cake, or a succulent sounding double-cooked pork belly & salted fish, with baby leak, ginger and spring onion, to name a few of the dishes offered on Yau's extensive menu.
Along with such tastebud-tickling treats, the beer is a highlight. Fresh, flavoursome Pilsner Urquell is served in huge tanks. Yau's apparently very insistent that Duck and Rice is a pub, not a 'posh restaurant' and the music, curated by Soho Radio, adds to the restaurant's relaxed vibe.
We wondered whether Yau's new venture would be a fleeting, flash in the pan novelty, or become a regular Soho haunt. The verdict: seriously good food, but at a serious price, with a sprinkling of pricy flops amidst otherwise high quality fare. Nonetheless, Duck and Rice does serve up some superlative Cantonese food, a cut above nearby Chinatown.
|What||Duck and Rice, Soho|
|Where||Duck and Rice, 90 Berwick Street , W1F 0QB | MAP|
|Nearest tube||Leicester Square (underground)|
01 Mar 15 – 01 Feb 16, 6:00 PM – 12:00 AM
|Price||£50-60 a head|
|Website||Click here to go to the Duck and Rice website.|