So you’re at the airport and you have chain restaurants all around; you spot Eat, Pret A Manger and Cafe Nero. None of them take your fancy. You wonder, you wish, you visualize something a little bit fancy to start off your trip (albeit one that won’t put a dent in your credit card before you even reach your destination). Ah ha! We at Trip101 have found it. We introduce you to The Perfectionists’ Café by Heston Blumenthal at Terminal 2 in London Heathrow. World famous and Michelin-starred Heston has opened this splendid eatery that can be found on the right hand side of the first floor, once you pass through security.
Worth a visit? Yes, we think so, if you want a mini taster to a Heston Blumenthal experience (and are unwilling to splash out at one of his Michelin restaurants in London outside of the airport), then try this place. We don’t want to lure you in under any false pretences, so do be mindful that an experience at The Perfections’ Café is only an introduction to what Heston can do rather than a full-on adventure at his other unique, quirky and unusual restaurants like The Fat Duck. Still keen to find out more? We think it would be worth your while to read on.
An introduction to a Heston Blumenthal experience
Heston once said, “You cannot achieve perfection because its entirely subjective. But as a perfectionist, you continually try to improve things, even if that means turning everything upside down and starting again”. What we really like about The Perfectionist Café is that it really embodies this statement. The place is great; a real contrast to some of the chain eateries or mid-range dining places to eat in the airport. Over the years, we have seen the Café improve in different ways and we can see that it is striving to be a bit closer to perfection. As we’re always honest with you, we’re going to say it as it is: The Perfectionist Café really is fantastic, not perfect yet, but has a chance to be with time. The exterior is smart, modern and like Heston, a little bit quirky. By the entrance, above the sign, there is an interesting clockwork knife that makes the whole place stand out and not feel like you’re in an airport feeding station, and rather a pleasant restaurant.
We recommend you get a booth by the balcony
Located on the corner of the first floor of Terminal 2 means that this restaurant is completely sectioned off from other places, making it much more cosy. The booths along the balcony that overlook the main terminal ground floor are recommended as you can sit back, eat and watch the flurry of excited passengers getting ready for their personal and business trips. The restaurant, as a whole, is well lit and quite spacious although there are a few tables that are a bit too close together. There are electrical outlets next to or by most of the tables so you can charge your laptops, phones and cameras ahead of your journey or multi-task and do a few things whilst waiting for your food. The service is friendly, polite and efficient during the morning and afternoon; during the evening, however, you will have to appreciate that there may be a wait due to the volume of travellers who are keen to sample a bit of Heston’s gastronomy. We would suggest that this restaurant is great if you’re with your partner or family (including teenagers); it may, however, not appeal to the taste buds of little ones.
British dishes with a little twist
With a Heston Blumenthal establishment, one expects good ingredients, cooked well and served in a smart and stylish environment, and we have to say that this expectation is realized at this modern airport dining establishment. The menu includes a variety of traditional British options with a twist and even has an express menu. The express menu promises to deliver either two courses in 20 minutes for 22 GBP (29 USD) or three courses for 25 minutes for 27.50 GBP (36 USD). Recommended dishes include the garlic flatbread for 4.75 GBP (6 USD) and the veggie burger (with the option of a gluten free bun) for 11.75 GBP (16 USD).
The highlight has to be the sweet treats such as the desserts and milkshakes. Desserts include nitro ice cream in various flavours including salted caramel, blood orange or even passionfruit and coconut. The cost per scoop is 2.50 GBP (3 USD). The Earl Grey panna cotta with lemon confit and almond crumble for 6.75 GBP (9 USD) is also recommended. The milkshakes are undeniably incredible. Try the malted chocolate, peanut butter and chocolate, coffee or pistachio flavoured one; you will be departing for your flight feeling very happy and satisfied!
Unusual combinations and pleasantly unconventional
The Perfectionists’ Café celebrates some of Britain’s favourite dishes and offers a few unusual combinations with hints of certain spices or ingredients that you would not expect. For example, have you ever had a beetroot and fennel patty that’s formed to make a veggie burger? No? We didn’t think so. That’s Heston for you; ready to conjure up something a bit unconventional to make your meal memorable. So, if you’re ready for that something a little bit different and want to embrace some fun, sweet specialities, then do head over to The Perfectionists’ Café.
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