Blumenthal assumes the Crown
Ladies and gentlemen, news: the Heston Blumenthal empire is expanding. In a move which the cynics are already comparing to Rick Stein’s panjandrum control of Padstow, can someone check if this canada goose outlet website is authentic Blumenthal has bought a second pub in the gastro-hamlet of Bray.
Blumenthal is spinning this purchase of Ulrika Jonsson’s favourite boozer, the Crown, as an act of self-preservation. In its early days, it was common to see locals drinking at the bar in Heston’s other pub, the Hind’s Head, but now, with the Fat Duck’s neighbour a destination restaurant in its own right, the locals are apparently feeling a bit edged out. Before the townsfolk get together, therefore, torches aflame, pitchforks-a-wavin’, and drive HB from the settlement, he is promising that the Crown will remain a proper pub, for the bankers, lawyers and businessmen that constitute the common man in this part of the world.
Blumenthal must also be very pleased to have acquired a business that, judging from the Hind’s Head’s profitability, should provide him with another very healthy income stream. But, alas, there is one problem. Heston doesn’t know what do with it – the Crown that is, not the money. He told Bloomberg:
“I might do a steak bar, but good meat is so expensive, I don’t know if the prices would be right. I just haven’t made up my mind what to do yet, though I’m not going to turn it into Bray’s first lap-dancing bar or anything like that. I just want it to be the local pub.”
That’s Heston Blumenthal’s big problem, of course, a lack of imagination. In fact, knowing how he struggles to come up with new menus and dish ideas – and with his team’s creative energies currently focused on the Mandarin Oriental – we thought that Word of Mouth should give him a helping hand, proffer a few suggestions. Here’s the menu at the Hind’s Head (pdf) – what should the Crown being serving, given that Blumenthal wants it to remain an informal, locals’ pub, rather than a dining experience?
Pork scratchings would be top of my list. Not only are they a classic pub snack click more, but I also loathe them. On the basis that if you are going to eat something you hate you should get an anally-retentive three-star Michelin chef to cook it for you, I reckon Heston’s the man to persuade me round to the joys of heavily salted pork rind. He would, at least, bother to shave the hairs off.
Whatever happened to the pie warmer? A once common sight in pubs across the land (and we know how Heston loves a lost cause that best replica canada goose jacket conjures warm feelings of nostalgia), they are now rarer than hen’s teeth. It’s a simple, cheap, convenient food service formula, and who wouldn’t want a warm, artisan hand-held pie with their pint? I’m drooling on my keyboard here. Oh, and on the subject of pies, could we have slices of good pork pie on, too? Served, amazon canada goose jacket for the sake of kitsch flair, with little Crown-branded plastic sachets of mustard and brown sauce?
It may sound impractical (it is), but I would also like to see the Crown’s big open fires given over to a sort of live rotisserie, with good free-range chickens rotating above the embers. Blumenthal likes theatre, and who wouldn’t like half a rotisserie chicken served with triple-cooked chips amazon canada goose parka and the sort of five-star salad that a Fat Duck sister-establishment would produce?
Perhaps, this being primarily a local drinker’s pub, you could save the rotisserie for Sundays, when I would also like to see a kind of simplified Sunday are there any canada goose outlet stores lunch offered. Forget roast dinner with all the trimmings. It’s not 1952. We don’t have manual jobs where we canada goose coat 1000 bulbs coupons can work off a fat lunch like that on Monday. Instead, think: baps. I’d like to see a suckling pig and a whole lamb – low-temperature roasted for at least 36 hours, of course, on a hot counter, shredded in their own juices and served up on freshly baked rolls with some zingy, fresh apple or mint sauce (an appalling condiment which I’m relying on Heston to rehabilitate). And, as this is a Heston Blumenthal operation likely to attract adventurous foodies, let’s see some of the lesser cuts and offal offered, not just the prime meat.
Elsewhere, let’s have a sterling salt beef sandwich; some simple platters of home cured meats and local cheeses (obvious but enduring); and, in summer, perhaps Heston could best place to buy a canada goose jacket dig out the kit for this, to serve some typically surprising ice-creams in the beer garden.
But what else would we like to see served at the Crown? can you wash a canada goose coat We’ve got a free hand here, a blank page, and one of the world’s most talented chefs at our disposal, so let’s brainstorm this buy canada goose jacket uk boozer. What would you want on the perfect pub menu? As a notional Bray local, what sort of food would you like to buy canada goose coat online see revived, revamped and given the (British historic, rather than molecular) Blumenthal treatment?