I always find it interesting how you can practically have no verbal interaction whatsoever when eating out at many of those small eateries in Taiwan. Just grab the menu sheet, put a mark next to the dishes that fancies you, hand it in, eat, walk towards the boss to signal for the check, and off you go. Words emitted: 0.
However, places don’t always have menu sheets, let alone a sign board, Duck Treasure 鴨肉珍 is one of them. Duck treasure is one of those 老店 decades-old shops still thriving in the historical Yangcheng area, and noticeably still a favorite among locals, expect to line up if you wish to join the morning and lunch crowd.
Everyday, before dawn, the owner of the shop personally goes to Pingtung 屏東 to pick the birds, bred for about 80 days, and goes back to Kaohsiung to get those beasts ready in time for service, starting around 9am.
One of my favorite at Duck Treasure is their duck rice 鴨肉飯, consisting of rice topped with slices of lean duck meat and smothered with some minced pork sauce 肉燥. Duck meat tends to have a gamey flavor so I found the saltiness and sweetness of the minced pork sauce to make for a tasty combination. Another food joint in the guide book had the same idea by pairing their specialty turkey rice with minced pork sauce, but sadly, the light flavor of the turkey simply vanished against the bolder minced pork sauce.
I’m also a fan of the “dry” duck glass noodles 亁鴨冬粉, which to my surprise, I have no pictures of it and didn’t spot it on other food blogs, but I swear, they do serve it! Since I’m not a frequent patron, I often forget to indicate that I want my noodles dry, and always have the semi-bad surprise, especially when eating under a sweltering heat (ugh!), of seeing a bowl with soup landing on the table.
I’m never really enticed to order a side of blood rice cake, but since the guide book recommended it, I obliged… but am still not a convert. I found that it was filling but personally thought that it tasted pretty plain in itself, the blood didn’t have that iron-y flavor as can be found in pork blood sausage like boudin noir.
Other must eats (according to the guide book) are the duck heart and liver soup 心肝湯 or the tripes soup 下水湯, which have always eluded me, but will eventually get around to trying to not feel like a total wuss whenever faced with offals 😬.
The Yangcheng district is a great place to eat your way through. After this duck business, you can stay on the same road and hit A-Mian mochi 阿綿麻糬 to end on a sweet note, and then wash it all down with some winter melon tea at Tianchi 天池冬瓜茶. Or if you are still hungry, you can even check out Ah-Jin Rice Noodles 阿進切仔麵 :).
Name: Duck Treasure 鴨肉珍
Additional Reviews+Photos: pixnet/oldfather1029
Business hours: 9am to around midnight (closed on some random Sundays…)
Price: ~50 NT