The Duck & Rice is a Cantonese restaurant and pub in Soho. There are two levels to The Duck and Rice – a very bustling pub on the ground floor and an equally bustling restaurant on the top floor. As you’d expect, we only care for the restaurant.
We’ve dined at The Duck and Rice a couple times, and our most recent dinner was last Thursday night. The Duck and Rice is under ten minutes away from both Tottenham Court Road and Oxford Circus stations and when we arrived last Thursday at 8PM it was utterly busy. Shiima and I were checked in by a hostess on the ground floor and led up a spiral staircase to our table in the restaurant, which also has a cosy pub like vibe to it.
We were quickly handed the menu, and my immediate reaction was that there’s certainly a lot more options (especially for Shiima) than our last visit.
What we ordered
From small chow, we ordered salt & pepper squid, fried chicken wings, and chicken yakitori. From Dim Sum, I ordered scallop shumai and venison puff, and Shiima ordered vegetable spring rolls and vegetable dumplings.
For main, I ordered jasmine smoked pork ribs and Shiima ordered Kung Po chicken with egg-fried rice.
Review of the food
All the small chow dishes were delicious. It’s what you’d hope for when you order the dishes at a good restaurant and a little bit more. I especially liked the yakitori, although there was too much sauce on it.
I loved the venison puff. Shiima liked it as well and had a piece, so I had to order another portion. The pastry was fantastic and the venison filling was delicious and just the right amount. My scallop shumai was okay, I’ve have many better shumais and it doesn’t help that one of the best I’ve had was next door in Yauatcha.
Shiima’s vegetable dumplings were passable. She ate them, but there were the least favourite dumplings she’s eaten (she’s turned her nose up at many more dumplings lol). Shiima didn’t like the vegetable spring rolls at all. She had a bite from one roll, and turned her nose up at the rest haha!
My jasmine smoked pork ribs looked delicious and I was so excited to tuck in, but it wasn’t near as delicious as it looked. It was neither sweet, spicy, nor a good combination of both. I did like I was raised to though and I ate it all lol!
Shiima didn’t enjoy her Kung Po chicken, mainly because it had Szechuan chilli, which she hates. But before she tasted the chilli she enjoyed it, especially the chicken in the dish, although there wasn’t much of it.
We weren’t keen on dessert … I can’t remember exactly why now cos we didn’t even bother looking at the menu, but we just gave it a pass.
The Duck and Rice has a really vibrant but cosy atmosphere, and the staff were very friendly and professional. Although we didn’t enjoy much of what we ate, there is also a good selection of Cantonese dishes as the menu is extensive. I’ll happily go back to the restaurant too, because the small chow and dim sum dishes were really good and the restaurant is perfect for large groups. It’s on the list of probable restaurants for Christmas dinner with our friends.
I’d recommend The Duck and Rice for a lively date, group dining, and the pub downstairs … cos it looks to me like they are having a ton of fun there. The Duck and Rice is also moderately priced.
Cuisine: Cantonese (Chinese) Cuisine
Dress Code: Casual
Shiima’s Star Dish: Chicken Yakitori
Amen’s Star Dish: Venison Puff
Price: £30 each (excluding alcohol)
Rating: 3.5 out of 5