Dinner By Heston Blumenthal
L3 Crown Towers, 8 Whiteman St, Southbank
03 9292 5779
When a chef is known by their first name, you know they’ve reached the top of the culinary game.
Such is the case with Heston Blumenthal, and his first Melbourne-based restaurant, Dinner by Heston Blumenthal. The British legend has brought his award- winning restaurant to Crown Melbourne, giving locals a chance to understand how he arrived at first-name status.
After a completely booked out seven-month Melbourne tenure of his world famous three-Michelin-starred The Fat Duck in 2015, Heston made a permanent move into the Crown space with Dinner by Heston. Yet Dinner is a different experience altogether. Following a more traditional three-course, accessible, a la carte restaurant offering, the tastes and flavours of the Dinner by Heston Blumenthal menu are distinctly Heston and the reason why Dinner has received world-wide acclaim and multiple awards in its own right.
In finding a name for his new concept, the celebrity chef wanted something that represented the fascinations of historic gastronomy from which the menu takes inspiration, but also conveyed a sense of fun. Easy to remember and loaded with history,Dinner by Heston Blumenthal was the perfect fit.
Every single element of the Dinner experience is considered and curated by Executive Chef, Ashley Palmer-Wa s, who has been working alongside Heston for more than 15 years and also heads up the Dinner restaurants. The design, a classic aesthetic set by the dark wood, brown leather, coloured velvets and burnished copper, is set o by the addition of a contemporary art installation, located in the middle of the open kitchen. This sets the tone of the kitchen’s culinary approach, as modern technology clashes wonderfully with traditions of the past.
This throwback to old times continues with the menu, where Heston and Ashley have created a collection of dishes that pay tribute to the culinary experiments of the past. At Dinner by Heston Blumenthal they have been brought into an ever- evolving modern dining experience through the use of Australian ingredients.
You’d be silly not to start with the Meat Fruit – possibly one of the most photographed dishes on the planet. With the appearance of a perfectly ripe mandarin, a well-placed slice soon reveals its pate centre, perfect for spreading on grilled bread. The Rice and Flesh is a striking example of British-Australian fusion, featuring a saffron risotto with succulent morsels of curried kangaroo tail, red wine and amaranth.
Larger dishes continue the theme with accompaniments on the main course dishes like cucumber heart, clam ketchup or red mussels. Order one of the steaks to admire the work of Australian beef producers, or celebrate the humble vegetable with the Braised Celery, served with parmesan, roast radish, cider apple and smoked walnuts a really complex main for vegetarians. Be sure to leave some room for dessert, it’s hard to refuse the liquid-nitrogen ice cream trolley or the roasted pineapple and Tipsy cake.
For something extra special, the chefs’ table – located inside the kitchen – o ers a ten-course menu with food arriving direct from the head chef on the pass.
The cocktails continue the creative work set by the food offerings. Designed in collaboration with Ashley and British-based cocktail king, Tony Conigliaro. The offerings include a deceptively clear-as-day Bloody Mary and a simply perfect Olive Leaf martini. Dinner by Heston Blumenthal may be world-class, but with reservations available there’s no excuse not to visit.