Cafe BBQ Duck Dinner Menu (Auckland CBD, New Zealand)
This is one of our cheap go to places when we can’t find something new to try in the city. With Cafe BBQ Duck I guess it’s hard to go wrong, most of their offering is spot on for our taste buds and wallet. We have been here numerous times and in all of those visits, everything was spot on. Usually we order set menu’s and they offer freebies like side dished but we never visited this place for a full-on dinner menu up until now. This last visit of ours, our group was quite big in numbers, we are a group of eleven adults and nine kids, in total there were twenty of us, space might be limited at this place but the people operating this place always makes a way.
All of the dishes that will be mentioned consist of two orders, so in total we have six viands in sets of two, meaning there were twelve platters plus we got an extra dish for all of us and that is more than enough. With those thirteen dishes we only paid for eight of them as they had a promo that night we were here, buy two mains and get one free, it was a real deal. Each plate of large dish costs around NZ$22.00 to NZ$25.00, so in total we paid NZ$208.40 which sums up to NZ$10.42 per person in a restaurant in Chancery Square / High Street, that is very affordable, especially in a location like this where restaurants will charge you at least $NZ20.00 per person.
So what did we have?
The extra dish that we had was Salt and Pepper Tofu (NZ$22.00).
Now let’s talk about each of the dish starting with Stir Fried Beef with Oyster Sauce. Basically these are very tender pieces of beef stir fried with Shanghai greens and spring onions on oyster sauce. It was seasoned really well, not too salty and the flavour was just right. Vegetable was very crisp and fresh but most importantly the beef was so tender, it was nice on the bite.
The Mapo Tofu on the other head was good too, lots of flavours and it was not too spicy, which was good since not all on our group can handle spice. It was so savoury, and the tofu was a delight, melt in your mouth goodness. While it this is good for the general, I feel this needs more of the Sichuan peppercorn as I felt it lacked them.
Lemon chicken came next, crispy battered chicken strips with pineapples on a sweet and tangy sauce. With this one, even though the chicken is drenched in all of that yummy sauce, it maintained its crispiness.
Which goes the same with the Sweet and Sour Fish. This one is served with big chunks of fish, onions and pepper, probably fish used are Basa fillets, I might be wrong. Again it was a really good dish, well balanced savoury, sweetness and sourness.
Then we had this Young Chow Fried Rice, filled with prawns, chopped char siu, carrots, peas, corn and eggs. It was tasty, this alone can be a complete dish on its own.
Finally our extra order the Salt and Pepper Tofu, you might not be a fan of tofu so you might not be convinced on what I thought of it. This was one, if not the best tofu I ate in my entire life, I never knew tofu can be this good, it’s so good I recreated it at home and I almost nailed it (just close). Basically these are made with soft tofu, not the firm ones, lightly coated with I think potato or tapioca starch, definitely not flour or cornstarch, as it was so crispy but not too much that the outer shell is hard. It easily breaks apart when it touches your tongue, while you feel that crispiness the coating slightly dissolves, similar feeling to a really thin potato chips. Add to that the warm and very soft inside, it is full of competing textures. Flavour was great as well, while tofu does not have exciting flavours on it, the oil it was deep fried on gave it flavour plus the chillies, peppers, spring onions and salt brings this thing to a home run. If there is one dish, I recommend in this place then this has to be it.
Overall it was good, food was again spot on. Service was phenomenal, there were no tables for twenty people but the managed to join together tables for us in a small amount of time, and they made sure we are comfortable in our seating. They also suggested the buy two free one dish, which not a lot of Chinese restaurants do. And for NZ$10.42 to try out six different dishes in good quantities, this is the cheapest degustation you can find in Auckland, as long as you bring nineteen friends along with you.
Cafe BBQ Duck 东风好食中心
Address: 42c High Street, Auckland CBD, Auckland 1010
Phone: +649 379 5513