Restaurant Review: The Peking Duck at Juqi Passes All the Tests

Logo The New York TimesThe New York Times
2023-05-30 19:20:17  • 7 mins

New Yorks Peking duck enthusiasts have had reason to be on edge lately. In the fall, a kitchen fire knocked down Decoy, the small, sunken rathskeller below RedFarm in the West Village that once served what many people considered the finest version of the dish in the city. The restaurant is expected to survive, but it probably wont reopen until this summer.

The fire followed the Covid closings, when Peking duck almost the definition of a restaurant dish was impossible to find. And the pandemic came right after the failure and bankruptcy of the Midtown beachhead of DaDong, a Beijing-based chain that couldnt seem to replicate the formula that makes its lean, golden birds so widely respected in China.

But there is good news at last. Juqi, in Flushing, Queens, is the first United States edition of a restaurant with about 20 locations in Beijing, all of which specialize in the cuisine of that city. And while it is nice to have a new place to eat zha jiang mian and jiaozi, not to mention cumin lamb and crab-flavored fish, the most impressive item on the menu is the Peking duck. I dont know another restaurant in the city that clears the classic Peking duck hurdles all the fine points of roasting, carving and serving so consistently and satisfyingly.

Continue read on nytimes.com

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