Posts Tagged With: Peking Duck

R&D

For my birthday celebration I made reservations for a friend and I at R&D because I really wanted to try this restaurant, not because of Masterchef but because the co-owner is Alvin Leung, a three Michelin star Chinese Canadian chef.

The decor is quite modern with comfortable and spacious seating and a bright interior. Our server informed us that the skewers were unavailable. We ordered the general sanders’ chicken ($25) and the 76 hour peking duck ($68).

The general sanders’ chicken is comprised of 2 deep fried crispy chicken legs, 2 deep fried crispy chicken breasts, Hong Kong egg waffles, sichuan maple syrup dipping sauce and kung pao dipping sauce. To make the batter coating the chicken prior to deep frying, vodka rather than buttermilk is used as the primary binder. Both the leg and breast were very tasty. I was pleasantly surprised that there are organs with the breast since it’s deep fried with the spine and bones as well. The dipping sauces go well with the chicken however my favourite is the sichuan maple syrup. The egg waffles are crunchy and sweet and the maple syrup goes really well with it. Overall, it’s a nice Asian inspired chicken and waffles dish.



The peking duck takes 76 hours of prep and cook time. The duck is first soaked in a salt brine for 40+ hours, then slow cooked for several hours and finally oven roasted. The peking duck served at R&D is an interesting spin on the dish. The skin isn’t as crispy compared to a traditional peking duck while the slices of meat are very thick. The meat is very tender and soft however it comes with a very large layer of fat between the skin and meat. The steamed buns are nice albeit abit thick in comparison to the normal paper-thin wraps at most other restaurants. There are 3 different coleslaws to accompany the thick slices of duck and the thick skinned steamed buns. There’s cucumber with hoisin sauce and scallions which is a fairly Asian take on coleslaw. There’s mango with asian pear and plum which is a very fruity take on coleslaw. There is also cabbage, ginger and carrot which is most reminiscent of regular western coleslaw. Of the 3 slaws, my favourite is the asian pear, mango and plum followed by the cucumber, hoisin sauce and scallion. My friend enjoyed this dish the most.

The service at R&D is nice although perhaps more training is required for their staff. We were unable to finish the peking duck so I asked for containers. The servers said that they’ll wrap up my food for me which is nice of them to do so. When I opened up the take out box a day later I was surprised to find only 30% of the leftovers in the box. My friend and I only had afew bites of the platter and I was looking forward to my duck leg so imagine my disappointment when there wasn’t any duck leg in my container and there were only afew pieces of duck and afew pieces of the steamed buns. All three coleslaws were missing from my container as well. I was very disappointed since I was looking forward to eating the dish again (albeit it wouldn’t have been as tasty as when it’s fresh out of the kitchen). Although my birthday dinner was good the day of, the care of my leftovers tarnished the restaurant for me.

Categories: Canada, Chinese, Cuisine, Downtown Toronto, Food, Restaurant Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Da Ya Li

My friends and I went to Da Ya Li for our celebratory dinner at the beginning of July. My friends have been there before and they don’t recommend the Peking duck there. If you have a member’s card (it costs around $20) then you can get discounts on most of the dishes. You usually get $1 or $2 off each dish. One of my friends have a membership card. If you go several times then you would be able to recoup the costs of the card.

Peking style four bowls Top left: meat Top right: tofu Bottom left: lion head (meat ball) Bottom right: meat

Peking style four bowls
Top left: meat
Top right: tofu
Bottom left: lion head (meat ball)
Bottom right: meat

Peking style steamed tofu

Peking style steamed tofu

We had the Peking style steamed tofu ($3.49), Peking style four bowls ($10.99 membership price), Tofu with crab roe ($7.99 membership price) and Noodle with meat sauce and vegetables ($5.99 membership price). A friend also got a bowl of rice ($1). The Peking style steamed tofu was quite salty and it had lots of sauce. The tofu itself was quite smooth and tasty. My friends and I really like the tofu with crab roe soup. The noodle with meat sauce and vegetables was also very appetizing. My friends and I had our own preferences for the Peking style four bowls. I preferred the lion head the most out of the four options. The tofu and the meat (bottom right in the above picture) were also good. I didn’t like the meat (top left in the above picture) because it had small bones in it. Another friend preferred the meat (bottom right in the above picture) while the other friend preferred the meat (top left in the above picture).

Tofu with Crab Roe

Tofu with Crab Roe

Noodle with Meat Sauce and Vegetables

Noodle with Meat Sauce and Vegetables

Overall, if you want to try Northern Chinese cuisine, Da Ya Li is another option for you to consider aside from Asian Legend.

Categories: Canada, Chinese, Cuisine, Food, Markham, Restaurant Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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