Duck & Rice rooftop restaurant launches

27 June, 2019 by
Hospitality Magazine

Contemporary Cantonese restaurant Duck & Rice has opened atop Westfield Pitt Street in Sydney’s CBD.

The rooftop eatery’s design inspired by traditional Chinese and Art Deco styling from 1930s Hong Kong and Shanghai, with guests set to enjoy a menu that offers Cantonese cuisine supported by provincial Chinese influence while surrounded by moody, modern interiors.

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The venue seats 500 across indoor and outdoor spaces, including a 200 pax bar featuring a reduced à la carte menu available until midnight.

Colour, texture and flavour are the name of the game across the à la carte, banquet and bar food menus — everything from dim sum and noodles to stir fries and fresh seafood are on offer.

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Highlights from head chef Kago Fong’s (Hilton Hotel Sydney, The Bistro by Wolfgang Puck at Sydney Airport) menu include Cantonese style roast duck with house-made plum sauce; scallop snow egg and Chinese kale fried rice; sashimi kingfish with pickled daikon & mala sauce; five spice beef shin with chilli vinaigrette; and the steamed whole daily market fish with ginger, spring onions, soy and fragrant oil.

The dim sum menu is split into steamed and fried with the likes of pork crab meat with flying fish roe siu mai; porcini & wild mushroom dumplings; saltwater duck & mushroom dumplings; and sesame prawn toast on offer, as well as assorted dim sum baskets. For those ordering the banquet menu there’s also the option of bonus dishes such as the fresh mud crab with ginger, shallot and Shaoxing wine (pre-order required).

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Desserts include mango and pomelo pudding with ginger cookies; deep fried ice cream with red bean and coconut and Osmanthus goji berry jelly with scented floral, raspberry and lychee sorbet.

Bar food dishes include the full dim sum offering as well as dong po pork, aromatic pork slow-cooked in lotus buns with Asian pickles; crispy chicken wings with kung pao sauce, peanuts and chilli; traditional Canton daikon cake with black bean vinegar; and five spice duck fried rice with XO sauce.

Asian spices, fruits and tea influences are apparent on the bar’s drink’s list, which also offers flights of Absinthe and Baiju.

Bar manager Luke Nicola’s (Ete, Mr Wong, Mercado) signature cocktails include Guns ‘n’ Roses (Gunpowder rum, pepper Sec, five spice Vermouth, strawberry, black rose tea ) and Spice Trade Punch #5 (anise Cognac, Campari, yuzu, citrus, pineapple). Classics such as Clover Club (Szechuan gin, citrus, house-made grenadine – $20) and Old Fashioned (black sesame rum, aromatic bitters, activated charcoal, burnt orange) are also on the menu.

Sommelier Simon Howland (Nomad, Catalina, River Café London) has curated a list of 100 wines by the bottle and 28 by the glass.

Alcohol-free options include house-made sodas, while a selection of Chinese teas are on hand for post-meal palate cleansing.

Brisbane-based architects Hogg & Lamb and interior stylists Stewart + Highfield are the design-minds behind the space, which features a nine metre Italian Calcutta Oro bar top with double bullnose edge detail framed by a glass fringe. Out on the terrace, 250 handmade Chinese iron lanterns enclose the Lantern Room to create a glowing canopy.

Duck & Rice is the third Sydney venue for Mantle Group Hospitality: Babylon, which opened last week, shares the Westfield Pitt Street rooftop with Duck & Rice and the group’s first NSW venture, The Squire’s Landing, launched in The Rocks mid-2018.

Image credit: Steven Woodburn