Review of 'Plane Food'

When Heathrow Terminal 5 opened in 2008 (with not a few problems) one of the most hyped things was the fact it was home to a Gordon Ramsey restaurant, “Plane Food”. 11 years later it is still there and, seemingly, going strong though the fabric is now a bit worn on the seats. As with many of the “air side” restaurants in the terminal, Plane Food offers food pretty much all the time and includes a take away option (evidently provided in a branded fabric bag – these line the wall as you enter the restaurant).

I have always seen the restaurant but never really had the opportunity to visit so while passing through the terminal in an early morning on my way to Europe I decided to finally give it a go. The brown interior is sort of “70s modern chic” echoing the futuristic visions of the time. Rounded sweeping lines throughout with a grey patterned carpet, brown faux-leather seats and long benches add to the look. As the main part of the restaurant is actually away from the hustle and bustle of the terminal, near to the terminal windows, it is quite quiet and I found quite peaceful and relaxing. There is a lot of seating with some areas including power points though every seat with a view of giant video screens playing, oddly silent, Gordon Ramsey cooking videos – The owner looking out over one of his more successful ventures.

Interior

The menu is on two sides of a place-mat (food one side, drinks the other) with the lunch/dinner sections of the menu available between 12:00 and 21:30 and the breakfast (whose options occupy a third of the food side) served between 5:00 and 12:00. I can't say much about the lunch/dinner options except to say there is an “Express Menu” which offers 2 courses in 25 minutes (£23) or 3 courses in 35 minutes (£27) which is a remarkable and ingenious idea. Otherwise, there are the normal suspects: Nibbles, Raw Bar (sushi and tartare), Small Plates, Salads, Noodles, Mains and Sides. Similarly, the breakfast section that I focused on offered fairly standard breakfast options with two main items a “English Breakfast” and “Veggie Breakfast” though other dishes were here as well including pancakes, fruit salad, porridge, etc. Nothing particularly earth-shattering though with very good ingredients.

I decided on the English Breakfast described as “Dingley Dell back bacon, free-range eggs, Cumberland sausage, flat field mushrooms, tomato” though when ordering I was cautioned by the helpful and very polite waiter that even at £11.75 toast (made with their own bread, I am assuming) was not included so I added that (four half-slices white, brown or mix; £3.75 including preserves) and a drink of fresh orange juice (£4.25).

Breakfast

As you might expect from a restaurant like this, the meal arrived very quickly and piping hot. Everything was absolutely delicious - The bacon not salty, the eggs perfectly cooked (fried, on my request, the whites fully cooked the yoke not), deliciously moist and buttery mushrooms, and the sausage absolutely amazing with bags of flavour. In fact, everything was full of flavour, perfectly seasoned, obviously fresh and of the highest quality. Yes, it is not a complicated meal but the preparation and quality of the ingredients were spot on. Likely one of the better English breakfasts I have ever had but it certainly was not at all inventive.

I was left alone without any pressure to leave throughout my visit with the waiters never to be seen until they magically appear at exactly the right moment. They were perfectly happy for me to sit there and drink my (free) tap water after eating, simply relaxing while trying to make sense of the voiceless Ramsey on the massive screens.

I can only complain about the portion size and, yes, the price which was a bit excessive – though, to be fair, pretty close to the prices you pay anywhere in the terminal. The bill came to £25.47 including an (optional) 12.5% service charge and a £1 charity donation (for the Great Ormond Street Hospital Children's Charity) but, I think, if you can afford it worth a bit more money for the chiled-out ambience as well as high quality food and great service.

Rating:

Review Date: 2019-01-06


Cuisine: American/British

Address: Terminal 5, Wellington Road, Heathrow Airport, Hounslow, TW6 2GA

Public Transport: TUBE Heathrow Terminal 5

Location: London (England) - Heathrow Airport

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Telephone: +44 (0) 208 897 4545

URL: https://www.gordonramsayrestaurants.com/plane-food/