Flashy Chinese roast duck chain DaDong’s only New York location has filed for bankruptcy protection, closing shop after just over two years — and multiple brutal zero-star reviews — at its massive space near Bryant Park.
The highly-anticipated Beijing-based chain — which has a few Michelin-starred locations in China — opened to much fanfare in December 2017, with hundreds of reservations disappearing as soon as the restaurant opened. The 400-seat, multilevel space was booked up until February the following year.
But shortly after, local critics pummeled the restaurant with negative reviews. New York magazine critic Adam Platt gave it zero stars, writing that it “combined the overwrought elements of Michelin-fueled ambition and style with the clunky, Disneyfied overtones of a random corporate restaurant chain.” The Times Pete Wells was arguably even harsher, also slapping the restaurant with a zero-star review. He called many of the dishes “dead on arrival” and said its famous duck “has almost no flavor.” Even the generally affable Andrew Zimmern said the food “was just down right bad.”
It did get some praise from Post critic Steve Cuozzo, who said the restaurant’s terrace was a “hidden gem,” and from Eater critic Robert Sietsema, who thought the restaurant’s duck wasn’t all that great but said at the time that it might be the “best chance to taste molecular gastronomy in New York City.”
Still, DaDong never quite recovered. It closed late last year, according to a representative.
Next Friday, the restaurant’s belongings will be sold in bulk at the restaurant space at 3 Bryant Park, along West 42nd Street between Broadway and Sixth Avenue, according to the bankruptcy case filed in the United States Bankruptcy Court in the Southern District of New York. Items such as restaurant furniture, fixtures, and kitchen equipment will be available for purchase.