The Fat Duck is a restaurant in Bray, Berkshire, England. It is run by celebrity chef proprietor Heston Blumenthal. Housed in a 16th-century building that had previously been the site of The Bell pub, the Fat Duck opened in 1995. Although it originally served food similar to that of a French bistro, it soon acquired a reputation for precision and invention, and has been at the forefront of many modern culinary developments, such as foodpairing, flavour encapsulation and multi-sensory cooking.
The number of staff in the kitchen has increased from four when it first opened to 42, resulting in a ratio of one kitchen staff member per customer. The restaurant gained its first Michelin star in 1999, its second in 2002 and its third in 2004, making it the fastest in the United Kingdom to earn three Michelin stars.
The restaurant is known for its fourteen-course tasting menu featuring dishes such as nitro scrambled egg and bacon ice cream, an Alice in Wonderland inspired mock turtle soup involving afob watch dissolved in tea, and a dish called Sound of the Sea which includes an audio element. The restaurant has an associated laboratory where Blumenthal and his team develop new dish concepts.
In 2009 the restaurant suffered from the largest ever recorded norovirus outbreak with over 400 diners falling unwell.