Traditional Beijing duck has a nice crispy skin-- this one was airy and crispy and fatty, yum-- and nearly flavorless meat, as this one did. I prefer a nice roast duck, but Beijing duck definitely isn't a bad way to eat duck.
Rest of the food ranged from okay to reasonably good. Veggie and shrimp dish was simple but actually quite tasty, the kung pao shrimp had a nice initial flavor but soon made you wonder why there were so few shrimp. (maybe Matt ate 'em all?) Sweet and sour pork was delicious but was mostly bone and cartilage, so not very tasty. Hot and sour soup was good but lacking in something, as most of the group seemed to ignore it after one bowl. And the green onion pancake was a very plain, oily, bland pancake.
The green beans were in a very traditional version some of us evidently were not familiar with, but we all nom nom'ed them as they were delicious, as were the bean sprouts. Not sure what was in the bean sprouts to make it tasty, but they were! (chicken broth? duck meat? pork drippings? SOMETHING!)
Rest of the restaurant was very Chinese authentic-modern-touristy-traditional. Anyone who's been to China in the past few years on a tour knows the feeling-- it's nice and well done but just doesn't seem quite old school or sleek enough to be anything else except a Chinese tourist place!!
We ended up with quite a group-- Mara, Kristina, Matt, Michelle, Carley, and Sonho-- and our late arrival (8:30pm) apparently was not so late-- we had the last big open table, and by 9pm it was totally packed!