Sunday, 16 August 2015

The Windmill - Stansted Airport

Departure Lounge
Stansted Airport

Breakfast served daily from 4am until noon

With a redeveloped departure lounge taking shape at Stansted Airport comes a new look Wetherspoons.

It's the usual Wetherspoons process of ordering at the bar and remembering your table number.

The seating area is much bigger and a giant windmill (minus sails) towers above the diners enjoying their pre-flight pint.

Prices are typically higher at the airport but a tad cheaper here than nearby competitors. The full breakfast menu can be found here.

There's no shortage of sauces here, if you forget to collect some they're happy to bring some to the table if you ask nicely.

 The sugar and spoon situation here was confusing, I couldn't find it anywhere and ended up asking at the bar where they handed me both. Maybe I just didn't spot it in the dining area, my wife was quick to spot the stained spoon though!

A large cappuccino cost £2.50.

The food was presented nicely and served hot, a very rare Wetherspoons moment!

The sausages are nothing to write home about but the bacon was nice enough.

 A decent egg with runny yolk and a small pot of beans.

 A large flavoursome tomato and a crispy potato rosti.

A slice of toast sat on the edge of the plate with a packet of Lurpak butter.

The Vegetarian breakfast cost £8.95 and came with much nicer sausages.

It was over five years ago in 2010 that I last visited The Windmill at Stansted Airport for breakfast, read that review here. Since then the departure lounge has had a face lift and a completely new Windmill has appeared. The price of the breakfast in five years has only increased by less than a pound but the seating area has increased much more. I couldn't resist revisiting once more as a group of us passed through the airport on a trip to Corfu...

Upon entering - The departure lounge is far from being finished but thankfully The Windmill is looking much bigger and better than it did before. The centre piece is a giant windmill (minus sails) that towers overhead above the main seating area, there are also tables along the front edge where it's a bit quieter. The ordering process is familiar if you regularly frequent Wetherspoons establishments, simply find a table and choose from the menu, remember the table number and place your order and pay at the bar. Return to your table with your hot drinks and sauces, the food arrives at the table when it's ready along with cutlery. Our visit here was fairly straightforward but I still have no idea where the sugar and spoons were kept. 7/10

Service - It looked really busy as we walked in but the chap by the entrance offered us a large table with a reserved sign on it. The bar staff taking orders were friendly enough and I later returned on my sugar and teaspoon search, they looked a tad confused and passed me some from behind the bar. The food all arrived together and halfway through eating somebody returned to check everything was ok, a nice touch and something I'd never experienced in a Wetherspoons establishment yet! We'd forgotten to collect sauces but the person bringing the food was happy enough to get some for us. 8/10

Contents - 2 sausages, 2 bacon, potato rosti, 1 fried egg, 1 large mushroom, half a large tomato, beans and a slice of toast & butter. 8/10

Presentation - Quite impressive really, everything looked how it should and the yolk was intact on the egg. The butter sachet lowered the tone slightly but as it was Lurpak I was more forgiving. 8/10

The food - I've never really been a fan of Wetherspoon's sausages but they are at least nicer than the dreaded catering economy sausage and have a better flavour and firmer texture. The bacon was nicely cooked and thoroughly enjoyable and the fried egg was pleasing on the eye with a nice runny yolk. The mushroom was juicy and the tomato impressive, both had an excellent flavour. The potato rosti was a first for me at Wetherspoons, I really enjoyed it but couldn't really tell it apart from a hash brown except for its shape. The toast was crunchy, butter delicious and beans fairly standard. Certainly the best Wetherspoons breakfast I'd ever eaten, the main reason for this was that for once it was served nice and hot. 7/10

Value for money - £8.95 for the traditional breakfast and £2.50 for a cappuccino, usually this may seem expensive but for an airport it seemed quite reasonable. 7/10

Veggie option  2 vegetarian sausages, 2 fried eggs, potato rosti, mushroom, beans, tomato and a slice of toast for £8.95. 

Overall - Nearly all the Wetherspoons I've visited for breakfast so far have let me down by serving food that isn't hot enough, this wasn't the case here though. A nice enough breakfast costing less than the neighbouring chains and good service too. We were pleasantly surprised by this Wetherspoons, certainly good for a last breakfast before jetting off somewhere! 7.5/10

Update - July 2016

I stopped off here again with my wife on the way to Barcelona, the breakfast was just as good this time round! We did look at all the other places serving breakfast in the airport but nobody offered such a complete breakfast at the same price as The Windmill.


1 comment:

  1. Hmm a rosti with a spoons breakfast, I hope they're all doing them, and hopefully the serving of hot food will be standard too.

    By the way my girlfriend is Greek so we're both following this one with great interest.