David’s Dumpling and Noodle Bar coming to Hillsborough Street

David’s Dumpling and Noodle Bar coming to Hillsborough Street

May, 04, 2010, by David

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The News and Observer is reporting that David Mao, the former chef and partner behind Duck and Dumpling, has come back out of retirement (he was bored) to start a new restaurant, David’s Dumpling and Noodle Bar located at 1900 Hillsborough Street in the old Red, Hot Blue/Darryl’s location.  The restaurant is said to be more affordable then the Duck with lunch and a beverage coming in at $7.50.  David Braken at the N&0 recounts Mao’s past,  moving here in 1972 and opening Cameron Village’s Mandarin House, followed by the 2002 partnership with Greg Hatem and Empire Properties to create Duck & Dumpling.  Mao parted ways with Empire last fall selling his 40% stake in the business. 

Read more from ole Bracken and the N&O in the dramatically titled “Return of David Mao: Act III”.

Photo: avlxyz

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Hillsborough StreetCameron VillageGreg HatemRestaurant OpeningsEmpire PropertiesDuck and DumplingDavid MaoChinese Foodopenings


  • Ten Foot Chickadee
    05/04 04:10 PM

    Yes, yes, yes, oh yes.
    I needs noodles!
    Can’t open soon enough.

  • Rostel
    05/04 04:33 PM

    Thats cool.  Right in the old red hot and blue/ Darryls spot?

  • gd
    05/04 04:44 PM


  • David
    05/04 05:08 PM

    @Rostel, yep, sorry meant to include that.

  • hackles10
    05/04 05:23 PM

    Great News!

    I will take whatever is in the pictured bowl!

  • Jonathan Parker
    05/04 06:20 PM

    Very glad that space will be filling up.  The street construction will be done soon, and this will slot right in between Locopops & the PR.  Cool!

  • DPK
    05/04 07:52 PM

    This is awesome.  Finally someone else has some vision to add a restaurant across from State that doesn’t just sell pizza, wings, or burgers.

  • katdesign83
    05/04 09:37 PM

    This is hella cool. I hope he makes pad thai.

  • Joshua
    05/04 10:02 PM

    this is great news. a great location that i think will benefit from an independent establishment. thanks David.

  • AMW
    05/04 10:26 PM

    Can’t wait! Hopefully this will stick…

  • RaleighRob
    05/05 09:06 AM

    Now THIS is exactly what this part of Hillsborough needs!  Can’t wait!

  • Jess
    05/05 09:54 AM

    totally looking forward to this!!!

  • kg
    05/05 10:39 AM

    that’s a pretty big location for a noodle shop.  hope he can make it stick.

    i assume full bar?

  • hackles10
    05/05 10:46 AM

    The front area with the circle/oval bar is fantastic for a noodle bar (as long as the decor is changed), the back room may be a bit much size wise, but I for one will do my part to keep this place in business.

  • Betsy
    05/05 11:28 AM

    ohhhhhhh but where will people park???????????

    JUST kidding.

  • hackles10
    05/05 12:04 PM

    Any idea on a time frame for opening?

  • Edward
    05/05 01:54 PM

    Wonder if they will be sharing a dumpster with Player’s Retreat?

  • Kate
    05/05 02:41 PM

    wow, this is great news.

  • wg
    05/05 02:50 PM

    what i have heard from peeps at the PR, is that this place and players retreat are going to share menus—like, you can order off PRs menu from noodle place, and vice versa…....

  • Rostel
    05/05 06:03 PM

    Nooooowaaaaay.  Thats gotta be a lie.

  • hackles10
    05/05 06:34 PM

    That does sound strange….not a good mesh of foods.  Would be strange to be slurping noodles and have a dude pounding Mimi’s sausage dip and fritos next to me.

  • JT
    05/06 10:48 AM

    Screw pad thai, I’ve been DYING for a place with real Japenese ramen.  You can’t get real ramen outside of big cities.  Hopefully they do that.  I recently requested they add it to the Duck n Dumpling menu too.

  • Ten Foot Chickadee
    05/06 11:28 AM

    JT - I too am addicted to the Japanese scag. After being thrown out of Grand Asia market for attempting to snort ground ramen packets (it’s no substitute) I wandered in a daze over to the Crossroads Center and found Kashin, a Japanese strip mall place. For now, they seem to have the best ramen that I’ve tried in the area. Might be worth your while to get a fix.

  • mmm ramen
    05/06 05:03 PM

    The ramen at Waba on Hillsborough (above Shanghai Express) is pretty dope.  The differences in Korean and Japanese ramen are beyond me, but when I’m craving ramen from a hole in the wall in Harajuku, Waba satisfies.  I’ll have to check out Kashin some time.

  • JT
    05/06 05:33 PM

    I’ll have to try that… maybe for dinner tonight.  The harajuku ramen is good, there was a place in omote-sando that was really good.  A bit more upscale and less street food, but still good.  Found it:


  • polly
    05/06 06:31 PM

    I want to go to there.

  • renee
    05/06 09:50 PM

    hell yeah!

  • Synaesthesiac
    05/07 10:20 AM

    What?  Top Ramen costs like 15 cent/pack at Food Lion.  Who would pay top dollar for ramen?

  • Tom from Raleigh
    05/07 01:05 PM

    I was just in Tokyo a couple of weeks ago.  I’d love to have a reasonably authentic ramen spot in Raleigh.  When we were there, we ate a place in Harujuku called Gogyo.  They served this black ramen that was just incredible. 

    I cooked a passable ramen starting from the Momofuku cookbook and adding black miso.  Not as good as Tokyo, but pretty good.

  • ncmyk
    05/07 04:49 PM

    hillsborough street is getting two more restaurants too at the other end.

    near packbackers will be a ‘pita pit’ franchise, and across the street from that will be a ‘time out’ - 24 hour place like the one in chapel hill (although decked out in red instead of blue)

  • hackles10
    05/07 04:53 PM

    ^awesome news.  I saw the “time out” signs up at the building across from east village.  I am pumped for Pita Pit….been one of my favorites since I first enjoyed a drunken steak and cheese pita in Gainsville, FLA.  Hillsborough St. may become a decent college street after all!

  • mmm ramen
    05/07 05:02 PM

    Synaesthesiac - the “real” ramen people would pay top dollar for only resembles supermarket instant ramen by name and category of noodle.  It’s a different beast entirely.  Think of the difference between canned Pillsbury biscuits and the ones you get at Big Eds, only the difference here is much more complex.

  • smitty
    05/07 06:09 PM

    Ramen snobs.  I’ve seen everything now.

  • KK
    05/08 08:51 AM

    “Who would pay top dollar for ramen?”

    People who have eaten fresh ramen.  But even then a bowl of ramen is only worth about 5 bucks.  I’ve heard of places in NYC getting away with charging at least $10 for ramen, which is ridiculous when you consider the ingredients in ramen.

  • CindyP
    05/08 03:09 PM

    I’ve been missing Wagamama since I got back from study abroad in the UK, if this place is anything like that, I’ll eat there daily

  • arthurb3
    05/11 01:43 PM

    NICE! I didn’t think he could sit still for long!

  • hackles10
    06/27 01:31 PM

    Is this open yet.  I read a tweet this morning that makes me think it may be open, or very close!

  • Richard Slater
    07/06 02:03 PM

    It is supposed to open this week, but I walked by it yesterday and it is still a “construction zone”.

  • hackles10
    07/20 12:48 PM

    Anybody have any updates?  R. Slater? 

    I am going to take a walk by the location this week and check out the progress.

  • K Helm
    07/28 09:48 AM

    Does anyone know if it’s open yet?  The posted phone number still reaches a message that the phone isn’t connected….

  • hackles10
    07/28 09:59 AM

    It looks really close!  Permits are still hanging on the door, but the signage and front entrance look complete.  I am guessing its a matter of days at this point.

  • Richard Slater
    07/29 01:22 PM

    Folks at the PR say he is having some “permit problems” but that it should open “soon”.

  • Drew3D
    08/06 02:49 PM

    As of last night (August 5) it is now open!  I just got back from lunch there and it was delicious.  The roti with chicken curry appetizer is super yummy and only $3.50.  Although it will be difficult, remember to save space for Locopops which is just a few steps away.

  • tc
    08/06 04:53 PM

    Yeah, I went by a few days ago (while at Locopops), and saw they were serving….turned out to be a soft-opening, but they let us check out the menu.  Looked very reasonable.  I think lunch Pad Thai was about $7 (dinner $9). 

    Can’t wait to try this place.

  • Tyler Durden
    08/06 11:08 PM

    Anybody heard of Momofuku?

    They need to get some Vietnamese Pho going on in here!

  • hackles10
    08/07 10:20 PM

    Its open, and its awesome!!!!

  • edusko
    08/09 02:35 AM

    david did not retire, he was fired from the duck for always being shit canned… his food is second rate and no business ever lasts at that location… if you really want a fifth third rate chinese restaurant on hillsborough street then have at it but your money would be better spent elsewhere.

  • Drew3D
    08/09 09:23 AM

    Hey Tyler Durden, they do have Pho on the dinner menu.  Haven’t tried it myself.  Not sure if it’s on the lunch menu.

  • Richard Slater
    08/09 09:39 AM

    Hey edusko. You wrote your email at 12.35 am. Were you also “shit canned”?

  • C
    08/09 11:22 AM

    Every time I ate at Duck & Dumpling, the food was great.  Almost every time, David walked out to our table to chat.  He always seemed very non “shit canned.”

  • hackles10
    08/09 11:35 AM

    Came out and chatted with us friday night, very personable.  If he keeps making food like that, I don’t give a damn how much he is drinking.

  • nelson14
    08/09 03:20 PM

    I’ve been twice now, and have been impressed with price and food quality both times. David’s ‘General Mao’s’ chicken and the fried wontons were especially good. Please note, though: they’re only offering beer, wine and sake. Hopefully, that will change soon.

  • gd
    08/10 08:37 AM

    I went last night - it was great.  Very fair priced and great quality.  I will be back very soon.

  • arthurb3
    03/16 10:17 AM

    The food is very good. The prices are great and service and ambience is nice. Never disapointed every time I go.

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