What: The Peking duck
Where: Palm Tree Palace, 79660 Highway 111, La Quinta
How much: $18 half, $35.95 whole
Contact: 760-289-6633; www.facebook.com/Palm-tree-palace-399335637531079
Why: It’s savory nirvana.
As I write this, I’ve just finished my second batch of leftovers from my visit to Palm Tree Palace, a newish Chinese-food restaurant in La Quinta—and I’m ready to declare that Palm Tree Palace’s Peking duck is easily one of the tastiest dishes I’ve ever had in the Coachella Valley.
I stopped in for a late Saturday dinner after reading rave after rave about the place on Facebook. I ordered the wor wonton soup (a downright reasonable $8.95) as a starter, and the half-duck as my entree, knowing full well that this would be too much food for li’l ol’ me, and that leftovers would be involved.
The soup was endorsement-worthy in and of itself. It was perfectly prepared. The broth was flavorful, and none of the ingredients were overcooked; the vegetables still had some firmness, and the meats and shrimp were plump and moist.
As I finished the soup, one of the servers brought out the half-duck … and I instantly realized how truly ridiculous this order was for one person: The half duck was HUGE. As the server began cutting pieces off, she told me this duck was a little larger than normal … but still. After preparing a plate for me, she offered to take the rest to the back to cut up and put in a to-go box; I thanked her profusely.
The duck came with fresh buns, as well as scallions and hoisin sauce. I took a bun and put sauce, scallions and skin-on duck inside; I then took a bite.
Wow. Just wow.
I loved the duck at the restaurant. It was great for dinner the next day … and it was splendid for lunch the day after that.
It’s official: Palm Tree Palace is my new favorite Chinese-food restaurant. It’s so, so good.