THE MIDDLE EAST'S NEW TRAVEL MAGAZINE: FOR BEAUTIFUL DESTINATIONS, HOTELS, THINGS AND EXPERIENCES
THE MIDDLE EAST'S NEW TRAVEL MAGAZINE: FOR BEAUTIFUL DESTINATIONS, HOTELS, THINGS AND EXPERIENCES
THE MIDDLE EAST'S NEW TRAVEL MAGAZINE: FOR BEAUTIFUL DESTINATIONS, HOTELS, THINGS AND EXPERIENCES
THE MIDDLE EAST'S NEW TRAVEL MAGAZINE: FOR BEAUTIFUL DESTINATIONS, HOTELS, THINGS AND EXPERIENCES
THE MIDDLE EAST'S NEW TRAVEL MAGAZINE: FOR BEAUTIFUL DESTINATIONS, HOTELS, THINGS AND EXPERIENCES
THE MIDDLE EAST'S NEW TRAVEL MAGAZINE: FOR BEAUTIFUL DESTINATIONS, HOTELS, THINGS AND EXPERIENCES
THE MIDDLE EAST'S NEW TRAVEL MAGAZINE: FOR BEAUTIFUL DESTINATIONS, HOTELS, THINGS AND EXPERIENCES
THE MIDDLE EAST'S NEW TRAVEL MAGAZINE: FOR BEAUTIFUL DESTINATIONS, HOTELS, THINGS AND EXPERIENCES
THE MIDDLE EAST'S NEW TRAVEL MAGAZINE: FOR BEAUTIFUL DESTINATIONS, HOTELS, THINGS AND EXPERIENCESM
THE MIDDLE EAST'S NEW TRAVEL MAGAZINE: FOR BEAUTIFUL DESTINATIONS, HOTELS, THINGS AND EXPERIENCES
THE MIDDLE EAST'S NEW TRAVEL MAGAZINE: FOR BEAUTIFUL DESTINATIONS, HOTELS, THINGS AND EXPERIENCES
THE MIDDLE EAST'S NEW TRAVEL MAGAZINE: FOR BEAUTIFUL DESTINATIONS, HOTELS, THINGS AND EXPERIENCES
THE MIDDLE EAST'S NEW TRAVEL MAGAZINE: FOR BEAUTIFUL DESTINATIONS, HOTELS, THINGS AND EXPERIENCES
THE MIDDLE EAST'S NEW TRAVEL MAGAZINE: FOR BEAUTIFUL DESTINATIONS, HOTELS, THINGS AND EXPERIENCES
THE MIDDLE EAST'S NEW TRAVEL MAGAZINE: FOR BEAUTIFUL DESTINATIONS, HOTELS, THINGS AND EXPERIENCES
THE MIDDLE EAST'S NEW TRAVEL MAGAZINE: FOR BEAUTIFUL DESTINATIONS, HOTELS, THINGS AND EXPERIENCES

Near+Far’s Best Restaurants: Demon Duck, Dubai – A Theatrical Asian Feast by Chef Alvin Leung

Where neon-lit theatricality meets melt-in-your-mouth Asian delights, orchestrated by service as dazzling as the decor

Athwifa Saleem

8 January 2024

demon duck dubai

Demon Duck Near+Far rating: 9/10

Why book Demon Duck

Hidden amidst the greenery of Banyan Tree Dubai, Demon Duck is more than just a restaurant; it’s an immersive culinary adventure. From the moment you step into the vibrant neon-lit interior, you’re transported to a world of playful theatricality and East-meets-West flavours. The Chinese restaurant is a sensation, thanks to its innovative twist on Asian dishes and celebrity chef Alvin Leung’s bold style of cooking – a culinary experience that truly stimulates the senses.

Opened in late 2022, Demon Duck Dubai sees the acclaimed concept from Hong Kong bring a huge dose of flavour and flair to the luxurious Banyan Tree, with modern Chinese but also global influences and a menu filled with epicurean dishes. Interiors are stunning – elegant blacks, gold accents, dramatic lighting, and a sleek open kitchen for watching the chefs in action (don’t miss the delicate carving action of their signature slow-roasted duck). What’s more, the service is impeccable – attentive, friendly and knowledgeable, but not intrusive. Head to the now spacious dining room and terrace for a more relaxed, romantic social setting.

demon duck dubai interiors

The space: 9/10

Demon Duck’s interiors are a stunning fusion of eclectic and elegant elements- and you’ll be tempted to capture the whimsical duck art and graffiti on the walls. A neon sign greets guests as they enter the restaurant through a sleek black and gold portal. Boasting an outdoor garden terrace and a refined modern indoor dining space, Demon Duck radiates sophistication contrasted with quirky portrayals of duck art by Hong Kong-based photographer Mark Chung, lively graffiti, and Middle Eastern-inspired mosaic motifs on Monica Tsang-designed tableware. Inspired by the vibrant spirit of Hong Kong nightlife, the chic speakeasy-style Bar at Demon Duck offers a cocktail menu that reflects the city’s dynamic energy, thereby creating the perfect ambience for laid-back evenings and seductive nightcaps alike.

demon duck dubai

The vibe: 8/10

Demon Duck is a great place to enjoy a creative and playful dining experience with a sophisticated and trendy air. The restaurant has a lively vibe – one that peaks during the weekend. Book a table after 8:30 pm – when the place gets packed – or come earlier and snag a cosy spot on the garden terrace or the bar area. In the evening, the room is filled with a warm glow of excitement from the guests who appreciate the innovative cuisine, the whimsical presentation, and the inventive cocktails. What sets Demon Duck apart from other restaurants in the region is its trendy, urban-inspired buzz, with eclectic music playing, creating a fun and positive vibe, and yet, guests can still chat comfortably without having to raise their voices or strain their ears. Whether you want a tranquil, intimate evening with your beloved or a lively night out, you will find it here. Our recent experience at Demon Duck was nothing short of exceptional. The service was impeccable, with our knowledgeable waiter guiding us through the menu’s exciting twists on classic Asian dishes. The atmosphere buzzed with a contagious energy, fueled by live duck carving performances and upbeat music.

The food: 9/10

Demon Duck’s cuisine is a tale of innovation, of a cross-cultural fusion of Chinese and Western flavours. The dishes at Demon Duck are playful and bold in their presentation, serving everything from Duck Kibbeh (a Dubai Food festival collaboration with Orfali Brothers), Hokkaido Scallop Ceviche, Wagyu Short Rib Gyoza to slow-roasted 14-day aged whole duck and 48-hour short ribs with crispy cauliflower and garlic kalbi sauce. Duck and seafood feature prominently, however, Demon Duck caters to all palates and has a tempting vegetarian menu with dishes such as salt and pepper tofu, wild mushroom fun gao, and Sichuan chili with cauliflower.

We began our dinner with exquisite starters such as the Wasabi Prawn Toast with Tobiko and Mango Salsa, a delightful explosion of crispy texture and spicy kick, and the Wagyu Short Rib Gyoza with Black Truffle and Siracha Mayo, which was melt-in-your-mouth tender, each bite bursting with rich beef flavour. And as for the mains, came the pièce de résistance: Demon Duck’s signature slow-roasted crispy-skinned duck that is carved skillfully and served with steamed calamansi buns and house-made Demon sauces. This signature dish was an absolute revelation; the duck was cooked to succulent perfection, its skin impossibly crisp, and its meat infused with a depth of flavour that lingered long after the last bite, and dare we say, it would be a dish one must try at least once in their lifetime. A visit would not be complete without ordering the custard tart with raspberry coulis and nutmeg crème fraiche, which was the ideal sweet finale of our time there.

The outdoor dining area at Demon Duck

The service: 9/10

The service team was equally captivating and passionate about the restaurant’s culinary creations, and their energy was as infectious as the upbeat music. They had a remarkable mastery of the menu’s varied and playful offerings, providing informative descriptions of each dish’s distinctive fusion of flavours and cultural origins. They observed our fascination for the elaborate duck carving spectacle and invited us to have a closer look, even divulging some intriguing details about the chef’s special technique.

The verdict

Demon Duck is a sensory journey of discovery. It’s a place where you can taste the surprising, delight in dramatic presentations, and explore the enchantment of Asian food reinvented. Whether you’re a discerning gastronome or just looking for a distinctive and unforgettable dining experience, Demon Duck at Banyan Tree Dubai is a destination you can’t miss.

Banyan Tree Dubai, banyantree.com, @demonduckdubai

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