Blumenthal takes The Fat Duck Down Under

Blumenthal will offer his trademark ‘magical dining experience’ at The Fat Duck in Melbourne

Heston Blumenthal is temporarily relocating his legendary three-Michelin-starred restaurant The Fat Duck while carrying out a six-month refurbishment of the original site in Bray.

The World’s 50 Best-listed restaurant will shut up shop in December and re-open at the Crown Towers hotel in Melbourne in February 2015. Blumenthal and group executive head chef Ashley Palmer-Watts will take the entire Fat Duck team with them for the six-month stint, which will be followed by a permanent site for Dinner by Heston Blumenthal in the same location.

“This is an incredible opportunity and I am thrilled that it has worked out the way it has,” said Blumenthal. “The Fat Duck is part of a Grade II-listed building, so I always knew there would come a time when it would need a little attention and the building itself would require a bit of modernisation - after all, it was built in 1640.

“I just couldn’t bear the thought of closing for an extended period, though. When we first started conversations with Crown, I saw the potential of the situation and really began to hope. I couldn’t have asked for a better outcome.”

Video: Heston Blumenthal announcement

The Fat Duck experience

Whilst at the Crown Melbourne Resort, The Fat Duck will offer the same ‘magical dining experience’ that helped it earn three Michelin stars in Bray 11 years previously; the full tasting menu and the multi-sensory journey of history, nostalgia, emotion and memory will all remain distinctive features.

The existing building in Bray will have its interiors modernised, creating exciting new work areas - particularly in the kitchen - whilst preserving its architectural integrity and historical context. The dining room will be refurbished as well, but the interior design will remain largely unaffected, keeping the room as the stage for the dining experience as a whole.

Following The Fat Duck’s return home to the UK, Dinner by Heston Blumenthal will take up permanent residence within the Crown Melbourne Resort, becoming the only restaurant the chef has in his portfolio outside of the UK.

Speaking of the first time he visited Australia back in 2003, Blumenthal said: “I fell in love with the country immediately. From that very first moment, the idea took root – someday I wanted to have a restaurant there.

“The restaurant scene is fantastic, the diversity exciting, and the produce incredible, but better than all of that, the people are just great fun. I love how Australian people celebrate good food; there is such a love of everything from coffee shops to gourmet restaurants and everything in between.”

Melbourne tourism boost

Crown Melbourne is a large integrated resort and has a casino, three hotels, function rooms, restaurants and shopping and entertainment facilities.

Crown Resorts’ chairman, James Packer, added: “Heston’s decision to relocate The Fat Duck to our Melbourne resort is an incredible result for Crown Resorts and the Victorian tourism industry.

“To attract an internationally renowned chef and innovator of Heston’s calibre is a reflection on Melbourne’s culinary reputation and Crown’s commitment to dining excellence.

“The relocation of the coveted restaurant will be a big boost for local tourism, attracting interstate and international guests to Melbourne so they can experience a once in a lifetime dining opportunity.”

Once the new Dinner restaurant opens as a permanent site, it will join Blumenthal’s existing portfolio which will include the refurbished The Fat Duck, Dinner by Heston Blumenthal in London, The Hinds Head, The Crown at Bray and the new The Perfectionists’ Café. 

The Fat Duck in Bray will close in December 2014 and is expected to re-open in June 2015. 

Related News

Blumenthal's The Perfectionists' Cafe opens today at Heathrow Terminal 2

First look: Heston Blumenthal’s The Perfectionists’ Café

Heston Blumenthal will use a ballot system to assign reservations for The Fat Duck at the Crown Melbourne Resort.

Heston Blumenthal to open The Fat Duck Melbourne in February

The Fat Duck to reopen with new menu

The Fat Duck to reopen with new menu

Heston Blumenthal has chosen Heathrow's Terminal 2 for the opening of his fourth UK dining venture

Heston Blumenthal to open restaurant at Heathrow's Terminal 2

The Perfectionists’ Café will open at Heathrow Terminal 2 upon its re-opening in June

Heston Blumenthal reveals details of new T2 restaurant

Heston Blumenthal's 126-cover restaurant at the Mandarin Oriental hotel in Knightsbridge will re-open on 9 February

Dinner by Heston Blumenthal temporarily closed after norovirus outbreak

Heston Blumenthal told BigHospitality he thought The Fat Duck had improved since it was first named at the top The World’s 50 Best Restaurants list

Heston Blumenthal: The Fat Duck is better now than when it was voted the world's best restaurant

Thomas Keller, last year's recipient of The World's 50 Best Restaurants Lifetime Achievement Award, was among the chefs who gave their thoughts to BigHospitality ahead of the ceremony

The World's 50 Best Restaurants 2013: Video interviews with Thomas Keller, Heston Blumenthal and Brett Graham

Submit a comment

Your comment has been saved

Post a comment

Please note that any information that you supply is protected by our Privacy and Cookie Policy. Access to all documents and request for further information are available to all users at no costs, In order to provide you with this free service, William Reed Business Media SAS does share your information with companies that have content on this site. When you access a document or request further information from this site, your information maybe shared with the owners of that document or information.