Duck and Dumpling Closing Next Week

December, 22, 2010, by Jedidiah

Duck and Dumpling Closing Next Week
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According to the N&O, the beloved downtown restaurant Duck and Dumpling will close on December 31st. We were sad to see Chef David Mao leave back in February but we are lucky enough to still have Mao around on Hillsborough Street in his new restaurant David's Dumpling and Noodle Bar. The N&O reports that Greg Hatem, owner of the restaurant, says that business wasn't as good as it used to be and that the "Asian fusion thing is something that was more about the late 90s and it's just no longer relevant". Indeed.

Duck & Dumpling will be replaced by another restaurant but no word on what will go there yet, but Hatem seems excited. With the Moore Square renovation hopefully starting in 2011, let's hope it's something that responds to what the new square design will offer the area's restaurants. The Duck had some of the best bartenders  and cocktails in town, but it looks like they'll stick around at the other Empire Eats restaurants.

Decent Indian Restaurant Downtown.......Anyone?

See the The Duck & Dumpling {categories show="257|236|256|96" show_group="9" limit="1"}{category_name}{/categories} page.
See the David’s Dumpling and Noodle Bar {categories show="257|236|256|96" show_group="9" limit="1"}{category_name}{/categories} page.

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Restaurants, Other posts by Jedidiah.


Empire EatsGreg HatemDuck and Dumpling


  • jstrahm
    12/22 04:07 PM

    no more filet chinois…nooo!

  • Alton
    12/22 04:12 PM

    Whatever opens there, they better have gluten-free Cajun food.  Just sayin.  Nuff said!

  • Chris C
    12/22 04:20 PM

    level it and make it food truck parking.

  • Jess
    12/22 04:51 PM

    how about a pizza place!

  • Adam
    12/22 05:34 PM

    Oh god, anything but indian food.

  • ilinap
    12/22 05:40 PM

    I vote for an Indian restaurant that’s cheap and has delivery. Indian food should be affordable, not frou frou like some of the restaurants I remember from my days in DC and Chicago.

  • arthurb3
    12/22 05:45 PM

    Don’t we need another Irish pub? But make this one trendy and exclusive like Solas! (just joking!)

  • Marky Mark
    12/22 05:52 PM

    The one thing I liked least about the “asian fusian thing” was the “spend fifty bucks and you’re still starving after eating the meal” thing.

  • Bosintang
    12/22 05:58 PM

    New Raleigh just said in their article about food trucks that restaurants closing were no big deal. You guys had a very “who cares” attitude last week.  Of course that part was removed later on in the day with no note of an edited post. (per your high journalistic standards) Now that one of Empire Eats locations is closing it’s news worthy and you suddenly care about the staff possibly losing jobs. Kinda hypocritical.

  • mgd
    12/22 06:00 PM

    India or Thai.  If the food truck deal ever passes I have my idea and every drunk bum and hipster will want one.

  • CF
    12/22 06:03 PM

    MORE CAJUN!!!!

  • Jonathan
    12/22 06:06 PM

    Indian would killer!! If you have the chance, check out Chai Pani In Asheville—-I think they or someone like them would do very well.

    Or maybe Klausies and Only Burger could tag team it!

  • Todd Morman
    12/22 07:55 PM

    Ok, so a restaurant is shifting focus (not closing, comeon on New Raleigh) because their most beloved chef moved on, before food trucks are allowed downtown, and that’s somehow evidence that food trucks are the problem? Give me a break.

  • Todd Morman
    12/22 07:59 PM

    That said, I’ll put in a hearty recommendation for Sushi-O on Glenwood near Jones St. If you haven’t been, it’s amazing (despite the generic name) - huge portions and great prices on the Thai and Vietnamese soups and noodles, even at dinner. The sushi’s fine, too (and half-price on Sunday, apparently), and every time I’ve gone the service has been friendly and excellent. They just opened in October and I’m amazed downtown lovers haven’t been raving about them. Maybe the location isn’t hip enough or something. Major thumbs up; it’s a great little pan-Asian place.

  • Todd Morman
    12/22 11:59 PM

    Correction: just got back from Sushi-O and found out the sushi is half-price every day from 5-6:30pm. Also, the owner is Chinese but was either born in or grew up in Vietnam, and spent lots of time learning Thai, Cambodian and Vietnamese cooking as well as Chinese. He speaks all those languages, too.

  • RaleighRob
    12/23 09:31 AM

    I’m so sad to hear this.  I’ve always thought of D&D as the best Chinese around downtown. 
    Yeah the Asian fusion thing wasn’t the best direction after Chef David left.  I think instead they should have tried the ultra-authentic Chinese food in the same way as the old Red Palace on New Bern Ave had (for those of us who remember that place).  I think that would have worked, if not priced too high.
    I agree with the idea of Indian as a replacement…that’s like the only major cuisine we have virtually none in downtown.  The last thing we need is more Italian or another pub-type place.  Crossing my fingers…..

  • Francesco Zappa
    12/23 09:58 AM

    Affordable Vietnamese, Thai, Indonesian, Cambodian or a fusion of all of the above would be excellent. The D&D was so overpriced it was a joke. Buku is almost as bad, with an even higher level of pretension and snootyness, even though they specialize in “global street food”? Ummm….?

    Hopefully the new place will be something interesting and delicious.

  • KK
    12/23 10:56 AM

    Oh how I dream that Greg Hatem’s assistant wasn’t blowing smoke up my bum when I emailed them a few months ago saying they should open an izakaya downtown and she said it was something they would consider seriously.  I need my izakaya fix and the closest one (that I know of) is in Washington DC :(

  • MGS
    12/23 12:29 PM

    Greg Hatem’s comment is just dumb.  I think Lantern has been doing just fine with its conceptualization of Asian Fusion and so has Jujube.  Momofuku restaurants in NY are, to some degree, asian fusion.  Where Greg Hatem messed up is trying to be too mainstream.

    I would like to see a yakitori or handmade noodle bar set up shop there.  We don’t need any more sushi places, Irish wannabe bars, or crappy wannabe diners.  How about a tapas place that is more like Jaleo and offers more and better things than Tasca Brava.  The one thing the triangle doesn’t really have is (I know it is passe) molecular gastronomy spot.

  • W
    12/23 12:48 PM

    Asian Fusion is dead?  Tell that to Lantern.

  • gd
    12/23 01:00 PM

    Lanterns food is subpar IMO. I only went once because it was that bad and quite a bit overpriced.  Every meal I have had at DND has been damn good.

  • RonW
    12/23 02:11 PM

    Agree that Asian fusion should still be ok if it’s done right.  And as much as I like Indian not sure if an upscale S. Asian eatery would have any more success.  A nice tapas bar would be good.  Something more authentic than Red Room and less $$$ than Tasca Brava.  Would also love to see Moroccan but could be a conflict with Sitti.  Or how about a crepes cafe/bistro?  Don’t know of any casual french places downtown, the Kitchen out in Chapel Hill rocks…

  • RonW
    12/23 02:20 PM

    Oh, and if Five Star was smart they’d hire Chef James Boyle from D&D and improve their food a couple of levels.  This guy deserves his own restaurant based upon what I ate there…

  • Chris C
    12/23 04:01 PM

    You guys are lol.

  • JT
    12/24 12:12 PM

    Izakaya would be awesome, but it would probably be a little dumbed down to succeed in this market.  I can’t see Raleigh getting excited about chicken ass and fried chicken skin with charcoal grilled tripe. 

    There still isn’t ramen to my knowledge in the area. 

    Indian would be great, especially if it was NOT cheap indian.  I’d prefer not to have “curry out of a bag”.

  • Duck And Dumpling Gone Baby Gone
    12/26 08:23 PM

    Glad to see that you actually referenced the news organization (the News & Observer) in the text of this article that actually broke this story. 

    That’s awesome that you’ve decided to give people credit as opposed to just linking to their article without mentioning them, stealing the content, and then passing it off as your own.

    Maybe someday you will actually try to do some real articles of your own that don’t suck!  One can only hope.

    BTW I walked by the Duck and Dumpling a while back and they had fried chicken mentioned on their sidewalk message board as one of their daily specials.  I think they closed because their food just sucked after David Mao left and wasn’t even original anymore, not because the Asian fusion food went out of style.

  • Frank
    12/28 01:15 PM

    Something quick but good and resonably priced. Not too many yuppies or hipsters!

  • Phil
    01/03 12:44 PM

    I only ate there under Mao. I was never very impressed.

    Hopefully something nice replaces it.

  • Unreliable
    01/04 06:44 PM

    I heard it’s gonna be a Thai restaurant with William from Buku as head chef.

  • Carl
    01/06 09:38 AM

    I heard that whatever it is, we can all plan to meet back here to bitch about it.

  • David Custack
    01/08 11:14 AM


    Now that is funny and so true of maybe every forum on any topic.

  • urg
    01/08 01:29 PM


  • mindcrime
    01/13 04:16 PM

    lol @ carl. that’s what will happen. we all know that. anybody that thinks david mao’s food was “excellent” or “the best chinese i’ve ever had” is an idiot. that guy doesn’t even cook. all the dumplings he made tasted the same, ginger ginger and more ginger. hatem’s right in the context of that space.

  • Carl
    01/14 09:28 AM


    I’m just going to leave that one there.

  • mindcrime
    01/16 06:20 PM

    get a life.

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