We were in Philly a few weeks ago for Dead & Co. concerts, and I wanted to go back to Chinatown to get crispy duck.
It was a hot and humid day in late spring, and we walked to Chinatown, thinking it would be easy to find a restaurant with ducks hanging from the window.
Actually, it wasn’t so easy, so we stopped in the tunnel of Reading Market and checked online for suggestions.
We settled on Ting Wong, at 138 N. 10th St., and walked over.
At the last place we had crispy duck in Philly, I was impressed by the food, but the atmosphere was dingy. In contrast, Ting Wong’s interior was clean and bright. There was a lunch crowd, but there was still space for us.
When I’ve had crispy duck before, it’s usually served with thin flour rolls (like mini tortillas), scallion stalks and plum sauce. In Philly, the custom seems to be to serve the duck with flat, pillowy bao buns. The buns are quite the carb overload, but so it’s best to go when you’re really hungry. This meal could put you to sleep with all that goodness.
Ting Wong serves its duck whole and chopped into sections, and the meat was juicy, with a hint of liver flavor in the darker parts of the duck. The skin is always my favorite: thin and crisp and shellacked with its own fat. We ordered a dish of greens to balance out the richness of the meal.
There’s nothing like crispy duck. I always want more.