Snail porridge and other such fantastical food define the owner of the multi-Michelin-starred restaurant named after a plump bird. You can’t have missed his genius gastronomy presence in the cooking world, so when I managed to bag a table at “Dinner”, Heston Blumenthal’s London dwelling, I knew I’d have a story to tell.
As we entered the dramatically-medieval-yet-modern dining room we were greeted by staff who seemingly live to serve. Our waiter explained that the same hand that trains his counterparts at the Fat Duck also trains himself and his colleagues at Dinner, and it clearly shows.
He sat us at a foodie’s dream table with views of the impressive open-plan kitchen, flames an’ all, much to the delight of my chef dad. Browsing the menu it’s easy to see the medieval theme flow from interior design to paper, each dish based on a historical influence. I chose the snails to start (it had to be done), warm braised celery salad as the main, and roast white peach to finish.
The snails, albeit an unusual delicacy for those not residing in France, were wonderful. Presented elegantly on a bed of vegetables and red wine jus the plate was a visual delight, and five minutes later I was licking it clean (is this acceptable etiquette when dining out?).
The celery salad may sound like a bland choice for a main: thankfully it was anything but. Summer essentially exploded on my tongue as I chewed through flavoured jellies, walnuts, mushrooms, artichoke and the most divine dressing known to man. Another plate the kitchen porter didn’t need to clean.
For desert, beautiful pockets of yoghurt, meringue and peach were brought together with a palette-cleansing sorbet. As I tucked in shamelessly I saw my parents do the same, their choices just as flawless. Every detail throughout the entire experience had been planned to world-class precision over months of exploration and experimentation. You’d expect no less from Heston.
All previously-described excellence aside, the highlight of the meal was the travelling ice-cream trolley. The experience of making bespoke ice cream was boosted dramatically by liquid nitrogen and a topping of hundreds & thousands (or fennel, if you fancy). It was by far the most expensive ice cream I have ever bought, but well worth it.
As a cheaper alternative to The Fat Duck, without the crazy waiting list, Dinner is a must-try dining experience.
To book your experience visit the website here (it’s worth it, I promise).
> Client Friendly: Client-wooing
> Affordability: Ouch, sorry wallet £££
> Nearest station: Knightsbridge
> Dress code: Glad-rags required
> Best for: Going ‘out out’
Words by – NJ
[Some imagery courtesy of Dinner]