Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group and The Fat Duck Group have joined forces to create Dinner by Heston Blumenthal, Chef Heston Blumenthal’s first London restaurant which opened at the award-winning Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park, London on Monday 31 January 2011.
Blumenthal, of the three Michelin starred The Fat Duck in Bray, Berkshire, The Hinds Head pub and The Crown pub of the same village, has won international acclaim for his unique and multi-sensory approach to cooking. This first restaurant to open outside of the village of Bray features the chef’s inimitable style of culinary alchemy with a menu heavily influenced by his ongoing research and discovery of historic British gastronomy.
Focusing on the revival and modernization of traditional British recipes, the menu at this highly anticipated new restaurant features simple contemporary dishes inspired by Britain’s historic gastronomic past and recipes dating as far back as the 16th century, such as Scallops with Cucumber Ketchup and Peas, Slow Cooked Short Rib of Beef in Red Wine Juice with Triple Cooked Chips and Tipsy Cake, made with Spit Roast Pineapple and Jersey Cream.
Mandarin Oriental and Heston Blumenthal worked with the internationally renowned designer, Adam D. Tihany, to create the restaurant interior. Inspired by Chef Blumenthal’s deep interest and knowledge of 15th and 16th century cookery, the design is a contemporary British Brasserie concept; an innovative illustration which influences the senses, yet remains true to British culinary and design traditions. Tihany highlights rich, natural materials such as wood, leather and iron – historical elements at the root of 16th century British style – incorporating them in contemporary ways to reinforce Heston’s revival and modernization of traditional British recipes.
With uninterrupted views over Hyde Park, the restaurant also features floor to ceiling glass walls providing a glimpse into the open kitchen and an unusual one-of-a-kind large scale pulley mechanism. This contemporary chrome and steel contraption has been modelled after the 16th century pulley system originally designed for the Royal British Court’s kitchens. A private dining room is available for up to 10 guests as well as a chef’s table for six located within the kitchen. During the summer months, a terrace overlooking Hyde Park will provide guests with one of London’s finest al fresco dining locations.
Seating 140 guests, Dinner by Heston Blumenthal is open for lunch and dinner and from May 2011, afternoon tea. The kitchen is headed by Ashley Palmer-Watts, group executive chef of the Fat Duck, who has worked with Blumenthal for ten years.
The etymology of the word ‘dinner’ gave rise to the name of the restaurant. In Britain, ‘dinner’ still means the main formal meal of the day, and it is usually served either in the middle of the day, or in the evening, depending on where you are in the British Isles. Originating from the 13th century French word disner (pronounced dee-nay), dinner was in fact originally eaten at breakfast time. The rise of social and economic changes, including technical innovations such as gaslight and electricity, allowed for the timing of this main meal of the day to be eaten later in the day.
Dinner by Heston Blumenthal is open from 12 noon to 2.30pm and from 6.30pm to 10.30pm.