While the U.S. fixated on NCAA basketball, people in Beijing flocked to traditional Sunday duck dinners. Our foray took us off a rutted alley in one of the disappearing hutongs,
an ancient low-rise neighborhood with homes built around inner courtyards. The duck, rich and encased in crackly skin, came with the usual paper-thin pancakes, cucumber,onion and duck sauce. Sides included cold duck feet, bok choy and mushroom, cucumber and cilantro salad, hot chicken and pork dishes and other assorted tastes unfamiliar. It cost 348 yuan for four, or about $50. My photo doesn't show the fnished product, but it shows the open fruitwood fire that gives off a perfume worthy of Sims.