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Duck, Duck, Good at Decoy

14188919763_5b8019301d_bRedFarm has been a fancified Chinese food fixture in the West Village for years now, beloved for owner Ed Schoenfeld, his famous charm and legendary red glasses, and chef Joe Ng, maker of supremely delicate PacMan Dumplings and decadent Pastrami Egg Rolls.  But over the last months, the restaurant has undergone a flurry of change, both expanding to the Upper West Side, and undergoing extensive renovations at the original location.  That’s included a makeover upstairs, and the construction of an entirely different eatery in the basement level space below, existing for a time as a pop-up Steakhouse, and finally debuting in May in its intended iteration, a swanky cocktail lounge and modern Peking Duck house called Decoy.

decoy-620And while you can perch at the bar for duck fat-washed whiskey or sochu-based tipples, and nibbles, such as Wagyu Short Rib Skewers and Shrimp Stuffed Shishito Peppers, it’s best to gather a group, make a reservation, and assemble at one of the communal tables (arranged under a commissioned mural of ducks, posed in an all-poultry imitation of The Last Supper), for the restaurant’s raison d’être; the full duck feast.

Offered for two, three or four guests at a time and priced at $65 dollars a head, dinners include one entire, crispy-skinned Peking Duck with all the trimmings, like pliant pancakes for wrapping up morsels of meat, along with house-made pickles, Decoy Chips, a variety of a_560x375-1sauces, and a few cloudy, savory Duck Consommé Shots for good measure. You’ll also get your choice of at least two small plates (extras can be ordered for $15 each), such as Oxtail Dumplings, Sweet Potato Noodle Salad, or Katz’s Pastrami Triangles (a variation on those infamous egg rolls) and, if you’re a team of four, Vegetable Fried Rice as well, along with a seasonal Side, like Sautéed Snow Pea Leaves or Asparagus, and two Main Dishes, including Black Sea Bass with Black Beans, Lotus Root with Two Kinds of Tofu, Marinated and Grilled Creekstone Rib Steak, or Jamaican-Chinese Jerk Chicken with Corn and Brussels Sprouts.

esq-03-duck-sour-drink-2014-mdn-65941213Still feeling somewhat peckish after all of that duck?  Decoy doesn’t offer much in the way of dessert (after all, what Chinese restaurant worth its salt in this city actually does?), but simply repair back to the bar and cap off your night with a plate of Ng’s feather-light dumplings, and one or two more of those intriguingly gamey, duck fat-washed cocktails.

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