By now you would have heard of Majestic Peking Duck that's surfaced at Makansutra Gluttons Bay - possibly the world's first Peking Duck hawker stall. Yes, you can now indulge in Peking Duck without breaking the bank, or having to go to a fancy restaurant. This platter of Peking Duck is only S$24 for ten pieces, less than half the price of a duck (usually S$68) in the restaurant.
We have Chef Yong Bing Ngen and Chef Yang Lai Fatt from the Majestic Group of restaurants under the Unlisted Collection Group to thank for bringing five-star restaurant fare to hawker levels. They felt Makansutra Gluttons Bay was a suitable launching pad given its happening crowd.
The Peking Duck is prepared pretty much the same way as it is in the restaurant, although the working space here is much smaller. The ducks are inflated to separate the meat from the skin to ensure crisping. They even brought in an Apollo oven to roast the duck.
I do find that the Peking duck slices are much thicker here than those served in restaurants. Each bite is meaty and substantial. The skin may not be as crispy or warm as a duck roasted upon order but you get it served fairly quickly.
I haven't tried the Peking Duck at the actual Majestic restaurants, so I have no comparison as to how the two differ. I'd wanted to go and try the restaurant version before posting this, but I haven't had the chance yet. So maybe I'll update this later.
Besides Peking Duck, the Majestic stall also features other duck dishes.
The Organic Leafy Salad with Sliced Duck ($12) is a steal for so much crisp organic greens studded with aromatic roasted duck. It is refreshing although a little heavy on the olive oil which also clashed a little bit flavour-wise with the sweet Asian-like dressing and crushed peanuts. Personally I would have preferred a more tangy dressing.
Fried Duck Rice with Crispy Cereal (S$8)
I'm told many people love this dish. I didn't get to try much of it, because my kids simply walloped the whole thing.
It does look like the cereal is not cooked together with the rice (as in cereal prawns) but scattered on as a topping. This means it's not as greasy (have you seen how cereal flakes absorb oil?), but could be a little dry. And I don't know why I keep hoping for chye poh in this dish! Maybe it's the colours.
My favourite dish strangely proved to be the Egg Noodles with Sliced Duck ($9). Somehow the familiar comfort of good gravy coating the crispy noodles was just so satisfying.
Other dishes include Honey Glazed Roasted Duck Wings; Duck Salad with Truffle Sauce; a Salted Vegetable Duck Soup, Crispy Soft Shell Crab with Thai Mango Salad.
I do like this trend of breaking the "atas" demarcation, and bringing five-star restaurant fare to hawker levels (and prices). I think Gluttons Bay is great as a start, and maybe after this, they can move carefully into certain heartlands.
MAJESTIC PEKING DUCK
Makansutra Gluttons Bay (beside the Esplanade)
8 Raffles Avenue
Mon-Thu: 5pm - 2am
Fri-Sat: 5pm - 3am
Sun: 4pm - 1am
Thanks to Makansutra for the invitation