For someone who have studied in London, you would be familiar with Cantonese-style roasts available from Bayswater, London. And soon the nickname of London roast duck became something returning graduates would crave for.
Origin of London Duck
Despite the name, London Fat Duck doesn’t actually have anything to do with London, nor did it originate from there… the name is simply a homage to their inspiration from famous Chinese Hong Kong roast duck restaurants in London
There’s Four Seasons (not the hotel) and Gold Mine, both served similar Cantonese cuisine, and they both served the famous Cantonese roast duck with a special sweet black sauce. So you get a nice fatty duck BBQ to the crisp on the outside and still moist and tender inside. Then they smothered the duck with their special sauces and that’s how Four Seasons and Gold Mine differed. But I digressed.
Let’s go back to London Fat Duck. They have absolutely no affiliation to these two but came from a different background – they were a JV between Fei Xiong and Akashi. Both are local eateries that have dome well with mid to low priced offerings. Fei Xiong made its mark with Minced Pork Mee Pok. Akashi was a bit more atas – they do mid-range Japanese food.
For some unknown reason, they have parted way and thankfully, the duck recipe remained with the franchise.
We had this lunch in the midst of the Covid-19 epidemic. So this outlet in Terminal 4 of Changi Airport was almost deserted except for a couple of ang moh having their Tiger beer.
The menu is simple duck and roasts, with simple dim sums and a couple of stir-fry dishes, nothing fancy. The most expensive item on the menu was their duck. Everything else was $20 or lower.
Homemade egg tofu with century egg sauce 皮蛋酱冻豆腐
WOW!!! What a starter! You can make this at home, but it was so good, you wondered why no one else offer this on their menu.
Egg tofu, smashed up yolk of century egg dressed with shredded pickled ginger, scallions and a vinegar, soy sauce and chilli oil sauce, topped with chopped century egg white. It was so simple, but so good.
Pan-fried radish cake 腊味萝卜糕
A miss, it was not pan-fried enough to form a crust, and the radish cake was a bit too soft.
Half a duck 伦敦烤鸭
The piece de resistance – London duck, half duck deboned. Firstly, you don’t get it deboned in London so it scored some points already. And then the duck – the skin was crispy despite being drizzled with the sauce, and the flesh was tender. Pass! And finally, the sauce – perhaps I have been back too long, I could not recollect how it was. But Dian Xiao Er offered similar style sauce theirs had too much danggui. This was OK, but I could not imagine the duck without the sauce.
They called their duck the wagyu of duck, but I could taste the different with other ducks used in Singapore. Just a marketing gimmick, thankfully they did not price it the same.
Hong Kong Crackling Pork Belly 港式脆皮烧肉
Here’s the thing, I expected it to be cubes of pork belly when it said Hong Kong on the menu. It came like any roast store in the hawker centres. Nothing to shout at but the crackling was really crispy, so it scored in the taste department.
Spinach with superior stock & trio eggs 三蛋黄苋菜
Good ingredients, the spinach was fresh and crunchy but the stock was too watery.
Again, we were the only table, so the service was ATTENTIVE! Yes, 4 service staff were serving us. Chatted about the epidemic with them, hopefully it was be over really soon.
London Fat Duck (Changi Airport Terminal 4)
10 Airport Boulevard #02-201, Check-In/Departure Hall, Level 2 Mezzanine, Singapore 819665
Date Visited : Feb 2020
I just woke up and saw this…. I’m hungry and jealous because I think my breakfast is a piece of toast …I actually live in London and i didn’t know they had a restaurant called fat duck. All the food looks yummy 🤤 thanks for sharing.
It’s a nickname that Singaporeans gave to the roast ducks in London. The best specimens in London are Four Seasons (not the hotel) and Gold Mine in Bayswater. Try them if you had the chance – after all these lockdown are over. Love your posts about Japan, really miss the sakura season, I always did not have the chance in every even-number years (2016, 2018 and now 2020) – sigh.
Actually the ones in London are different names. Love your travel blogs too Tofu.
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