Fire Cracker Duck Wings @ Carthay Circle Restaurant

Price: $15.00

When: May 7, 2016, 1 PM

Reservations: Recommended

Verdict? Not recommended

Carthay Circle Restaurant offers a few signature dishes, items that have been on the menu since the restaurant opened in 2012. One of these – Fire Cracker Duck Wings – has been on my “give it a try” list for some time now.

Today’s the day.

The wings are an appetizer. The dish comes with 7 small duck wings, each with a very light bready coating. There’s a side of lime for spritzing. And the star of the show – the signature flavor – is Sriracha. The wings are thoroughly coated in a Sriracha-infused sauce.

Here’s the good news: the duck is cooked perfectly. The meat falls off the bone. The light bread coating is delightful. And the lime is a nice flavor complement.

The bad news? The Sriracha. It’s such an alpha flavor that it takes over the show. The spice and heat are so overpowering that you can’t really taste the duck. The meat is just texture, a Sriracha delivery vehicle. And that’s a shame, because if they toned the spice down a bit, it would make everything better.

To be clear, this is not a bad dish. But I don’t recommend it. While I like spicy food, these wings are not something I’d order again. The novelty wears off too quickly, and the strong flavor is too one-note for my tastebuds.

Not recommended.