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Duck Hunting

Summer wanes. The days begin to shorten. Nights cool, the air crispens and palates seek dishes that speak of autumn.

At Grant Grill, chef Chris Kurth gives classic duck à l’orange a modern spin.

Center stage? We’ll take duck, meaty and rare with a rosy hue and spice-dusted crackling skin, or slow cooked in its own golden fat until the meat shreds from the bone. At Nine-Ten, Jason Knibb’s duck breast pairs with chayote squash, pickled carrots and cashew mole, while at Brooklyn Girl our favorite bird stars in a salad of plump dates and Marcona almonds. And at Avant, the El Bizcocho reboot reviewed for this issue, Frenchman Nic Bour combines technique à la française with Anglo charm and California farm fare, turning out “shepherd’s pie” that features Sonoma duck breast plus punchy huckleberries and rich confit under a lid of Yukon gold potato puree. Our favorite duck and cover.