Selling itself on the claim that its birds (RMB 198 per whole duck) are leaner than those of other roast duck joints, Da Dong’s two classy branches more or less bookend the 2km strip between Changhong Qiao and Dongsishitiao. Arguments will never cease as to which kitchen produces Beijing’s best roast ducks, but Da Dong’s ability to transcend the duck genre is marked by its repeated wins as "Best Chinese Restaurant of the Year" in the Beijinger’s annual Reader Restaurant Awards. Try dipping a slice of duck in the sugar provided alongside other condiments – somehow, it works beautifully. The 160-page menu is a work of art in itself, with a plethora of duck dishes backed up by vegetable dishes, soups and more. If you’re only going to eat duck once in Beijing, book a table – or else be prepared to wait for one – at Da Dong. Voted best "Chinese Restaurant of the Year," "Beijing Duck" and "Best for Impressing Visitors" in the 2011 Reader Restaurant Awards.
No event here now.
- Beijing Duck
- Contemporary Chinese
- tbj Reader Restaurant Award Winners
User reviews of Da Dong Roast Duck 北京大董烤鸭店
I have just left Da Dong restaurant in Beijing feeling quite sick. It wasn’t the food though. It was the maggot crawling between the plates that made me nauseous. And also the attitude of the staff when we quietly complained.
After waiting for some time we were first offered to have the water and 2 cans of coke removed from the bill. Further complaints raised the discount higher, but we weren’t actually in the mood to negotiate with them so we just told the manager, “Take what you think is fair off the bill”. He presented us with the card machine where he had charged us the full bill! 1975 RMB for three people is not cheap even with free maggots.
I don’t know how this works in China, but in the UK the health and safety executive would be paying a visit after seeing our video of the maggot in question.
The management of Da Dong obviously feel that maggots crawling on the table is no reason to complain or to offer some recompense but I would never set foot in the place again. Do you really want to pay these kinds of prices and risk an unwanted guest at your table? I was at dinner with friends but imagine taking a loved one for a special night or an important business client. I can tell you that a maggot crawling on your table will change the mood somewhat as well as removing any memory of the food.
On a final note I am sorry to say that the Duck was not that great. I have certainly had better in Beijing without the huge bill, the maggot or the surly attitude of the staff. Not a place I will be visiting again. Next time I want Beijing Duck I will go to the one in Tianamen Square.
The service was very good. We had a private room and the waiters seemed very happy to be doing a good job, and took good care of the entire table. This is a big plus for those who want to show guests a good time in a hospitable atmosphere.
The food was marvellous. They explained the dishes to us efficiently (they didn't bang on and on) and that made the dining experience so much more meaningful.
The selection of food was vast. Even a common dish like the humble dumpling was done with top-notch attention to quality (eg. the succelent meat, the thickness and eveness of the dough) and they added their special touch to it that you would be hard-pressed to find anywhere else (e.g. it was accompanied with 10 different types of vinegar!)
And the duck? Awesome. It's very beginner friendly, as once again they explain how to use different sauces, how to wrap etc. But they don't have an air of pomposity; they let you do whatever you want but simple take pride in explaining the traditional methods of the dish.
I have been to the JinBao Jie branch countless of times and I never get bored of the food. The menu is very picturesque and huge with a large array of dishes for you to choose from. The food here not only tastes good but it looks good and you know the chefs have definately paid lots of attention to the plating and structure of their dishes. The roast duck here is the best in beijing, the skin is thin and crispy and the meat tender. My favourite way to eat it is to dip in sugar and put into one of those shell like pastry. You can order those extra for RMB 1 each. My other favourite dish is the Abalone rice with Chinese Yam and Truffle. It is one of the best dishes at Da Dong, though a bit costly but you definately get what you pay for. The abalone and chinese yam are cooked for approx 48 hours hence the really tender abalone meat and when you bite into the chinese yam bits you get a burst of truffle flavour, overall this whole dish just screams delish. I really recommend this dish if you want a taste of something extraordinary! (remember, its the abalone rice dish with yam, not the abalone dish because there are three different dishes with similar names, do not order the abalone alone because its not worth the price, and not as good as the rice one)
If you like crab or steamed egg or either one, the Alaskan crab steamed egg with chinese hua diao is also another dish to try, but be aware the smallest portion feeds four.
The warm soups/ chilled soups here are not worth trying so don't waste your stomach space on any of these. However, try one of those exotic dishes like duck tongue or duck gizzards.
The service here is average, there are waiters assigned to every section of the restaurant. It gets pretty busy during peak hours and on weekends so do make a reservation if you aren't the type who likes to stand around and wait. (keep in mind that waiting ranges from 15-30 minutes)
Overall, the food here is great though can be quite costly. A meal for two here can range from RMB 200-1500.
I went there last week with my boyfriend.
They don't take any booking after 6.30pm so when you arrive you may have to queue up, but they welcome you with free drinks and a nice area where you can sit and listen to music and chat.
When you receive the menu, the menu is huge with many delicate food options, we went for the classical roast duck, their signature dish and some rice and noodles. The food was amazing, I have never ever eaten a so good roast duck, not fat at all, well presented, with many condiments.
The service is not great but it's not terrible either. They speak a bit of English.
The prices are higher than for another random restaurant, but it is worth it and for the quality, there is nothing to say : the budget would be around 100-120 without drinks per person.
So I would highly recommend this lace if you are looking for a nice roast duck experience. It's clean and well decorated, you have space and privacy ...
The hard part is finding one's seat, even with a reservation, as the fu wu yuan are crazy busy trying to handle a huge volume of customers. Once the meal starts, the food is divine. We paid about CNY200 per person.