The Duck and Rice, Soho
Duck and Rice is a clever concept from Alan Yau. It’s casual gastropub character – pints of beer and chill sauce bottles on low key wooden tables – spells ‘chilled out’ to the casual dater looking for something a little more budget than nearby Yauatcha. However, like a Sloane moved to Stokey, the posh eventually shines through. Wait a second, these hostesses are a little TOO charming. Are these brass finishings and ceramic wall panels? Is that Jason Artherton enjoying a Sunday hang? I knew it, Duck and Rice, you’re fancy! But thankfully, you’re also reasonable, kinda hip and somewhere that manages to calm rising daytime dating nerves. Maybe it’s the wooden pencils and scribbling menus. Nope, it’s the beer.
Order said tankards of beer on a Sunday lunch to help settle into the date and out of the hangover. Then pencil tick the menu in turns – a trio of Venison Puffs, Shu Mai, those divine sticky pork buns (Char Sui), crispy chilli beef (perfect texture and crunch), spicy Singapore noodles, and some token greens in Oyster sauce.. Mix it up for dessert and beg your way to Yauatcha for some take away macaroons to give your date. Smooth.
You might regret not dressing up for this pub.