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The Fat Duck 2006

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I've heard from my brother (who lives in France) that the Fat Duck had some serious issues about hygiene. Is this some rumor spreading on the other side of the channel or is that true?

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i think that was just about slow cooking for long times , people saying how can u kill bacteria with certain meats if u only cooked to 56 degrees ? i seen an article with heston were he explains with the temperature of things , he explained how the holding time at the temperature comes into play with killing bacteria , but im sure that get alot of health and safety officers go through there if not independant as well for thier own precautions , but enjoy the lunch will definetly be and amazing culinary journey for u whichever way it goes :)just dont have big expectations and the meal will be more thrilling and inspiring just enjoy and appreciate

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I've heard from my brother (who lives in France) that the Fat Duck had some serious issues about hygiene. Is this some rumor spreading on the other side of the channel or is that true?

There were some small issues, but they were cleared up. And I don't believe it had anything to do with cleanliness.

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Well, since there's been a complaint about the lack of photos on this thread, here are some I took last year...


mango and douglas fir purée, bavarois of lychee and mango, blackcurrant sorbet


the infamous snail porridge, somewhat out of focus


two diners sitting accross from me


on the left, a cedar "mint", or "film". Toast with truffles. On the right, jelly of quail topped with langoustine cream and a parfait of foie gras. Orgasmic. My favourite.


Pine sherbet fountain. this is something that mimics the fountains Heston had as a child, but which I've never had, since I am from Brazil. The vanilla pod is to be dipped in the sour powder and licked/sucked. Made many diners around me giggle. I brought mine back to my B&B and photographed it outside so it would show up clearly.

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Here is a photo report of our dinner at The Fat Duck on April 26, 2006. In general, the meal provided a great deal of intellectual stimulation, but lacked one, key ingredient: truly delicious food. With the exception of the foie gras and the hot/cold tea, there was very little that I would ever crave. Other great restaurants, like the French Laundry or El Bulli, generally have several, fantastic dishes. That being said, I still enjoyed the meal and creative, if sometimes bizarre, combinations.

The entrance


Nitro-Green Tea and Lime Mousse

This was prepared tableside and intended to clean your palate. It was theatrical, but in a good way.



Oyster, Passion Fruit Jelly, Horseradish Cream, Lavender

A pleasant oyster and I almost always enjoy passion fruit. The horseradish added an enjoyable kick.


Pommery Grain Mustard Ice Cream, Red Cabbage Gazpacho

A bit odd, but really quite good. The ice cream/sorbet dishes after this would all be disappointing. The cool, icy mustard in this dish really worked well, though.


Jelly of Quail, Langoustine Cream, Parfait of Foie Gras

Probably my favorite dish. Everything was soft, and the flavors came together.


Snail Porridge, Joselito Ham, Shaved Fennel

Tasty, but no depth or complexity. The porridge was nicely cooked with some texture left. Not a stand out.


Roast Foie Gras, Almond Fluid Gel, Cherry and Chamomile

A nice foie gras dish -- great combination of flavors. The little gelee cubes were a nice textural component.


Sardine on Toast Sorbet, Ballotine of Mackerel "Invertebrate", Marinated Daikon

This had an interesting dish with the taste of the sea in the background. At the end of the day, though, it just wasn't that good. Fishy sorbet doesn't work for me. The marinated daikon, however, did add a very pleasant component to the dish.


Salmon Poached with Liquorice, Asparagus, Pink Grapefruit, "Manni" Olive Oil

By far, the worst dish of the night. I admit that I don't like licorice, but the whole dish was unpleasant. The salmon had an almost mushy consistency and the licorice sort of crept up on you out of nowhere and ended up overwhelming the palate. The vanilla bean mayonnaise was simply oily tasting.


Poached Breast of Anjou Pigeon Pancetta, Pastilla of its Leg, Pistachio, Cocoa and Quatre Epices

A slightly more successful dish. The pigeon was well cooked and a relief after the last dish. I particularly liked the cocoa nibs. The pastilla was greasy and tasteless, though.


Mrs. Marshall's Margaret Cornet

Cute presentation, but forgettable in terms of taste. Basically, a small ice cream cone with little flavor.


Parsnip Cereal with Milk

I really liked this one. I'm not sure if the dehydrated parsnip flakes were sweetened, but they were quite tasty.


Pine Sherbet Fountain

Our picture didn't turn out so well. This is the vanilla bean dipped in a tangy powder -- similar to a "Fun Dip" from childhood. Good, but no culinary achievement.

Mango and Douglas Fir Puree, Bavarois of Lychee and Mango, Blackcurrant Sorbet

A very disappointing dessert. Boring and too subtle, except for the blackcurrant sorbet. The mango and lychee were barely noticeable and the douglas fir nonexistent.


Carrot and Orange Tuile, Beetroot Jelly

These were simple and tasty. Not much more than that.


Smoked Bacon and Egg Ice Cream, Pain Perdu and Tea Jelly

This, of course, is a play on breakfast for dessert. One of the least successful dishes. The bacon and egg ice cream was decidedly unpleasant, and the pain perdu and salted caramel didn't mitigate that. I pretty much ate all the caramel and left the rest. The tea jelly was wonderful, but half of our table didn't care for it.



Hot and Cold Tea

A very intriguing concept that worked well. If you look closely, there's a fine line cutting through the middle of the tea. As you drink the tea (which is slightly thickened), you get the sensation of cool and warm teas commingling in your mouth.


Violet Tarts and Chocolates

Chocolates were fine, the tarts were sweet, sticky and tasty.


Edited by mukki (log)

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are they ever going to change the damned menu?

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