BBQ in East Village
We ended up at Ducks Eatery a while back after reading all kinds of business on the internet about how amazing their chicken wings are. After a few visits, we are ready to report back that a) the chicken wings aren't that good, and b) we have absolutely no idea what is going on at this place.
This "restaurant" (it's really more of a bar with a small menu) is so random that here's how our first visit went down. We popped into Ducks on a Wednesday night for some wings, and ended up eating home made beef jerky, St. Louis Ribs, some trail mix (?), a bite or two of brisket, a giant bowl of mystery noodle soup, and exactly zero wings. Why? Because we had to throw in the towel before the wings arrived. By that point there was a vicious sectarian battle between rival spices raging inside our stomachs, and we were too confused by what we had just eaten to carry on.
A second visit dedicated to wing consumption was also unsuccessful. The hickory smoked jerk chicken has way too much rub on it, and the wings are huge like they came off of a condor. No thanks. For some reason, everything in this place is so over spiced, over smoked, and overthought that none of it works. The beef jerky has squid ink on it. Why?
If it's wings you're after, do yourself a favor and hit Pok Pok or Pork Slope. If you're looking for some BBQ, get out to Fette Sau. We don't really know what to tell you to come to Ducks Eatery for...except maybe to have a drink and some trail mix. Or you could just go camping.
Chicken Wings As we mentioned before, these wings are too big, too hard to eat, and way too heavy on the jerk seasoning. A little restraint would go a long way. So would a smaller chicken.Beef Jerky Another menu item that's really more of a bar snack, this beef jerky has been cured in squid ink, which does...something. Maybe it makes it darker. It certainly doesn't make it taste much different than the rest of the beef jerky that we've eaten over the years.Yakamein This vaguely Asian noodle soup is apparently popular in New Orleans, and our waitress insisted that we order it. It looked a lot like ramen, but had more of a lime/lemongrass flavor to the broth. It was probably the best thing we ate at Ducks, but we wouldn't order it again.St. Louis Ribs These were big, dry ribs that tasted like they spent too much time in the smoker. Go eat ribs somewhere else.Brisket This is definitely our highlight from the menu at Ducks. Probably because it was well cooked and properly seasoned. It seems to be a limited menu item, so if you're there, ask about it.
Yes, that's the name for the trail mix here, which consists of cashews, bacon, dried cherries, and Cocoa Crispies. All the dudes from your fraternity will definitely think it's awesome. Maybe have some right before you butt chug a drink or two.