Well, it’s been a while since I did a food post so I thought it should be a good one! I don’t think it’s much of a secret that Heston Blumenthal’s “Dinner” at the Mandarin Oriental near Hyde Park is pretty good but I thought I’d share my experience anyway.
This was the third time I’ve been to “Dinner” (spoilt, I know) and I would go again – it really is that good. I’ve been once for dinner and twice for lunch although I’ve always ordered from the A La Carte menu, as I like to have more choice.
Obviously being based in the Mandarin Oriental you receive great service the minute you step near the hotel. I always try and get there early so I can have a cocktail at the stunning bar….
….and use the beautiful toilets (who doesn’t love a luxury hotel bathroom?!).
The glass sinks and dusty pink wallpaper is just stunning.
This time we were lucky to be seated next to the finishing kitchen (if you want to sit here it may be worth requesting when you book – and you do need to book in advance).
I am happy to report that being gluten-free here is absolutely no problem and all the staff are so helpful and friendly, it immediately puts you at ease and makes the whole experience special.
All the dishes on the menu have some historical significance with a modern twist (of course – this is Blumenthal after all) so if you like very plain food then this is probably not for you (although you can just order the steak and chips).
One of the most famous dishes here (and my favourite) is the “Meat Fruit” (and yes, it’s gluten-free!):
This is such a ridiculously clever dish. It’s not a Mandarin at all but the most deliciously rich, savoury chicken parfait incased in the lightest, sweet Mandarin jelly imaginable. I’m seriously drooling just looking at the photo! It is rich however, so if you’re planning on having three courses it could be one to share.
A lighter starter was this chicken liver salad which was really refreshing on a hot Summer’s day:
For my main, this time I had fish which was absolutely faultless (the last two visits I had meat – the powdered duck and another dish I have forgotten). I would definitely recommend the fish dishes over the meat in this case. I had the cod in Cider:
It was just sublime and everything was cooked and seasoned to perfection.
Lastly I couldn’t decide on dessert so I had the waitress make a recommendation. She spoke extremely highly of the goat’s cheese cheesecake. Given the fact that I love goat’s cheese and cheesecake (which I haven’t eaten for about 5 years as it’s not normally a gluten-free option) I was particularly excited by the prospect.
Wow! It was amazing – just the right balance between savoury and sweet. I somehow managed to finish it even though it was very rich. If you’re not a goat’s cheese fan this is not for you, as it’s definitely ‘goatie’ if you know what I mean.
I definitely chose well this time and next time I go I’ll certainly order fish again. It really was 3 courses of utter decadence. And the wine list is very good too!
For more info and to book click here.
Where do you like to eat for a treat in London?