Friday, June 22, 2018

Zither Garden 古琴雅苑 (Hong Kong, CHINA) ★★★☆☆

Another day and another Peking duck specialist has arrived in the heart of Tsim Sha Tsui this month. Zither Garden (古琴雅苑) recently opened doors at Prince Tower but they are no stranger to Hong Kong's dining scene having already opened in Wanchai for more than a year.

Like Alvin Leung's Forbidden Duck, Zither Garden features two distinctly different types of roasted duck - a traditional roasted Peking duck (烤北京填鴨) and an eponymous one named Zither Garden Vinasse roasted Peking duck (古琴酒糟烤北京填鴨) (Half HK$178; whole: HK$338). We had a couple rounds of discussion on which one to pick but at the end, we took the easy way out by ordering both flavors.

First and foremost, some condiments including all the usual suspects - cucumber, leeks, honeydew melon and sweet bean sauce, setting the stage for a wonderful night of roasted Peking duck for us.

First up, the most crispy part of the duck (一口酥) was served up. This is the part which is right around the neck area, consisting of just the skin and a little bit of fat. As instructed, we dipped each piece into the honey plum sauce and sugar one after one. 

Melt-in-your-mouth good~

While we were still enjoying the skin from the neck area, the chef already started peeling off the skin and meat carefully.

From what I've heard, their head chef who's mainly in charge of their Peking ducks, worked over 20 years at Quan Ju De (全聚德) so he obviously knows how it takes to make a tasty Peking duck. And it all started with the "air drying" technique they used resulting in much crispier skins and less greasy meat.

We first had the traditional Peking duck (烤北京填鴨) with their homemade pancakes. The first thing I noticed about these pancakes is the fact that they're a little thinner than most pancakes from traditional Peking duck restaurants (I hate the thick ones like those from Spring Deer!). This really allowed diners to taste the natural flavors of the duck and the condiments.

Before our second half-duck arrives, some braised cabbage with Yunnam ham (金腿濃湯津白) simmered in a rich chicken broth.

My little nugget tried to jump the gun when the Zither Garden Vinasse roasted Peking duck (古琴酒糟烤北京填鴨) arrives. 

I was expecting a little bit of wine flavors in there but they are so subtle that honestly, I can hardly tell the difference.

Judging from the roasted duck, I thought it was way better than what we got from Xihe Yayuan (羲和雅苑) and the price represented really good value for money.

Food Rating: 5.5/10
Price: $$$
Address: 15/F, Prince Tower, 12A Peking Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Hong Kong
Closest Metro Station: Tsim Sha Tsui
Tel: +852 2882-1582

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