Restaurant ducks red flavor to town center

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Minjeong Kim

The rosé flavored rice cake is among the many menu items served at Red Duck.

Dominique Chang

Quack! Quack! Quack! That’s how many quacks out of five that Red Duck in Fullerton’s Amerige Town Center deserves.

The restaurant, which opened last month and replaces Ono Hawaiian BBQ, offers Korean and Chinese food that’s often found among street vendors in such Asian regions as South Korea and China.

Emitting the same atmosphere as dining in the streets of Asia, Red Duck displays a spacious setting with green tables and red seats. 

Located along the interior walls of the restaurant, the big Chinese posters with green tape nicely match the cultural atmosphere of the restaurant. 

When seated, customers are handed a menu and a separate order sheet to mark off the items they would like to order. The laminated, legal size and one-sided paper lists the food items – divided into appetizers, bao buns and main dishes – and displays images for some of them, thus making it easier for diners to pick what to order. Desserts like the glazed sweet potato ($8.45) and drinks like the apple sidra ($2.50) are also available for ordering.

The restaurant offers garlic chili oil wontons ($10.45) and honey garlic cucumber salad ($6.95) as two out of its six appetizers: both feel simple and light for people to start off their meal.

Red Duck also sells three types of bao buns ($8.45): the pork belly bao, the TFC (Taiwanese fried chicken) bao and the bulgogi mushroom bao. Each plate comes with two bao buns, and the pork belly bao has a little kick of spice for a variety of flavors. 

The main dishes include items like the Red Duck original rice cakes, rose spicy rice cakes and sour pork spare ribs — the staples of Korean and Chinese street food. 

During one visit Nov. 8, the pork belly bao was purchased. It consists of a fluffy bao bun stuffed with steamed pork belly and topped with pickled jalapeños and onions. The ratio of bun to meat tastes perfect, and the pork feels tender and soft in the mouth. However, the sauce on top of the pork belly tastes very sweet and overpowers the whole dish.

The rose spicy rice cake costs $14.45 and comes in a medium-sized dish. A trending flavor in South Korea, rose fuses the regular spicy rice cake sauce with cream or milk to fashion a sweet yet savory flavor. The bland rose flavor present in the dish, however, fails to complement the thick and chewy rice cakes, which end up saving the dish from its heavily diluted taste. 

Another main dish, the wok fried rice does not meet up to its expectations. Adding a side of $3 chicken softens the $12.95 dish, yet the overwhelming flavor of the soy sauce makes the rice too salty for customers with sensitive taste buds. Additionally, the unproportional ratio of vegetables to rice results in the dish being too heavy in vegetables. 

All in all, it is great that a new Asian street food restaurant was launched at a location accessible to many Sunny Hills students. Despite the fact that Red Duck serves as a great place for a casual dine-out with friends, the food is on the pricier side, considering the fact that it falls under the category of street food. 

Despite the diner’s name, duck cannot be ordered at all, which explains the triple quack rating instead of a perfect quack score.