Some have described dining at renown chef Heston Blumenthal’s The Fat Duck — one of only three restaurants in the UK with three Michelin stars — as “food theater”.
Chef Blumenthal is one of many modern chefs that have immersed themselves in what some believe is the future of food: molecular gastronomy, the informal science of food creation by experimenting with liquid interactions, temperatures, solubility, dispersion, foams, jellies, and food flavors and textures. Chef Blumenthal calls it “sensory design”.
Blumenthal quotes the 18th-century French gastronome Brillat-Savarin: “The discovery of a new dish does more for human happiness than the discovery of a new star”.
Here are ten radical taste experiences Heston Blumenthal has concocted in his food laboratory:
1. Smoked Bacon-and-egg Ice Cream
Includes tomato and red pepper jam, caramelized French Toast, salted butter caramel, and a tea jelly. Preceded by parsnip cereal and parsnip milk delivered in a small “Fat Duck Cereal” box.
2. Mousse Poached in Liquid Nitrogen
Frozen puffball pops that melts in your mouth.
3. White Chocolate with Caviar
White chocolate disks topped with half a coffee spoon of caviar.
4. Oxtail-and-kidney Pudding
Rich, hearty meal with caramelized vegetables.
5. Snail Porridge
Made with 72 cooked snails, highly seasoned snail butter, and porridge made with Parma ham, and fennel bulb.
6. Cauliflower Risotto Sprinkled with Cocoa Powder
Superb and surprising combination of tastes with beets and dried mushrooms. Lots of vegetable flavors.
7. Edible Sand
Made from tapioca, seaweed, mushroom slithers, bamboo shoots, and foam.
8. Nitro Poached Green Tea and Lime Mousse
Frozen mousse at -320°F with liquid nitrogen inside an ice bucket. Quickly plated and covered with green tea power.
9. Mock Turtle Soup
You first dissolve a gold crusted watch tea bag in lite soy sauce, then pour the tea into your dish. Includes turnip and swede mound with Enoki mushrooms, cucumber, and truffles.
10. Salmon Poached in Liquorice
With artichokes, vanilla mayonnaise, Golden Trout Roe, and Manni olive oil, sprinkled with little bits of grapefruit.