The high profile New York debut of Beijing duck chain DaDong just keeps getting bashed — following a zero-star review from New York and a diss from celebrity Andrew Zimmern, Pete Wells has now filed his own zero-star review of the Bryant Park restaurant.
The Chinese chain from chef-owner Dong Zhengxiang opened at 3 Bryant Park at the end of 2017 with a reputation for serving one of the finest (and most luxe) versions of Beijing’s most famous dish, the roast duck. Though Wells commended the crispiness of the skin, he was ultimately disappointed with the full product:
The meat didn’t make as firm an impression. It made very little impression at all, apart from my strong sense that there ought to have been more of it. Tasted on its own, it reminded me a bit of the lean, whitish, noncommittal supermarket pork chops I grew up on. Slowly, gradually, with great mental resistance but still inexorably, it dawned on me that I had paid $98 for a duck with almost no flavor.
It was dry, too.
Other dishes on the menu fell flat as well, he writes, saying that the long menu is “rife with dishes that are dead on arrival.” One saving grace was the desserts, which included an ice cream that had “an alluringly bitter edge of a dried tangerine peel.” But it wasn’t enough to eke DaDong into a rewarding experience overall: Zero stars.