Carluccio's, Terminal 5, Heathrow
Terminal 5 (pre-security)
by Hashley Brown
In the past I’ve been somewhat disappointed by airport breakfasts; all that early morning struggling is seldom rewarded by the delicious breakfasty bounty it surely deserves. So when faced with an imminent departure from Heathrow Terminal 5, I succumbed to an understandable degree of scepticism (whilst narrowly avoiding any lost bag jokes at check-in).
This glorious cavern of international travel (it really is very nice inside), home to so many shattered dreams, now seems to have picked itself up from recent catastrophes - although one brief look at the website shows that post-security breakfasting options are limited to the mundane. Giraffe, Eat, Starbucks and Generic-Airport-Pub sit alongside more off-beat options such as Itsu and Wagamama (whose Japanese breakfasts I’ll be trying next time), but overall it displays a singular lack of imagination in airport service design. It must be the same people who are responsible for sticking a ‘Caviar House and Prunerie’ and a ‘Win a supercar’ stall in every British airport; such a peculiar reflection on the British psyche.
However there is one breakfasting ray of light in this whole situation, and it shines in pre-security land. Just after check-in sits Carluccio’s, whose breakfasting options are wonderfully robust. My uova e funghi, rich scrambled eggs and those famous Carluccio’s mushrooms sad side by side on a chunk of good fresh country bread. Although this humble public servant’s expense account didn't run to the full Italo-English melee, which throws pancetta into the mix, the quality of food on my plate was enough to reassure me that that just about anything this behemoth of Italy in England churns out will be good. Add great coffee and Terminal 5 looked more enticing by the mouthful.
The only problem being that with fast broken before one passes security, there really is nothing else to do but munch that beluga and dream of Ferraris.
PS. If you do try this, look out for the entertaining antics of the eyebrow plucking manager (permanently surprised v. terrahawks extra) and the surly waiter who looks disarmingly like the fat stupid one from The Wire.