Though local taxi drivers still shake their heads in bemusement, The Fat Duck is now officially the world's best restaurant. According to an international poll of chefs, restaurateurs and food journalists, The Fat Duck beats anything you can find elsewhere.
Set in the slightly twee village of Bray in Berkshire, Heston Blumenthal's establishment is a place where alchemy meets up-market cuisine, resulting in that notorious menu - sardines on toast sorbet, green tea and lime mousse cooked in liquid nitrogen at your table (pictured) etc.
But this is a menu that has been consciously designed by the triple-Michelin-star chef to vigorously engage the senses. All the senses mind, not just taste.
Blumenthal succeeds in his endeavours. Diners are dazzled by a rollercoaster of startling dishes, each of which merits analysis and debate. (The snail porridge wasn't a particular favourite of mine, but my guests rated it highly).
The restaurant has a cosy, cottage feel to it - it's not snooty or over-formal in the least. Waiters take time to explain and educate, while practising good-humoured psychological tomfoolery on their customers. And the wine list is incredible. It's big enough to flatten a whole lawn.
Where: Bray-on-Thames, Berkshire Contact: 01628 580333 How much: Tasting menu: £97.75 a head