Capital café is top for sustainability

Edinburgh restaurant gets full marks for ethics in UK-wide scheme

Cafe Saint Honore

AN Edinburgh eatery has been awarded top marks by the Sustainable Restaurant Association.

Cafe St Honoré in North West Thistle Street Lane achieved three-star champion status from the organisation, which rates restaurants as one, two or three-star based on how sustainable their approach is to sourcing produce; using resources, like energy, water and waste management; and their role in society, including involvement with local groups and charities, promoting healthy eating and responsible marketing.
The award is said to make Cafe St Honoré the highest-rated Scottish restaurant in the UK-wide scheme.
The Sustainable Restaurant Association praised chef director Neil Forbes and his team for their policy of sourcing local, seasonal and sustainable ingredients, developing good relationships with producers and foragers, and ensuring diners are given clear lines of traceability.
As well as gaining recognition for its approach to ingredients, Cafe St Honoré also received plaudits for its community activities, such as promoting the Slow Food movement at events.
The restaurant’s environmental practices, including water and energy-saving, were also commended.
Neil, who visits Edinburgh Farmers’ Market every week to meet suppliers and order stock, said he hopes the award will encourage other chefs and restaurateurs to join the Sustainable Restaurant Association.
“Sustainability is top of my list of priorities at the restaurant; it’s a way of life,” he said.
“However, it’s nothing new as our grandparents’ generation would have been accustomed to preserving resources, growing their own and buying locally. But since the dawn of globalisation we seem to have forgotten the importance and economic benefits of these values.
“I’m very encouraged that an organisation like the SRA exists to help restaurants and producers make practical changes to the way they do business. It feels great to be able to pass on these messages to the future generation of chefs.”

Sustainability is top of my list of priorities at the restaurant.

Mark Linehan, managing director of the SRA, said: “Since becoming the first Scottish members of the SRA, Neil and his team at Cafe St Honoré have embraced our ethos of continual improvement.
“Now, as the highest-rated restaurant in Scotland in 2012, Cafe St Honoré is setting the standard for others to follow and proving that a truly sustainable restaurant is good for customers, business and the planet.”

Image: Cafe St Honoré in Edinburgh serves “the very best Scottish produce in an authentically Parisian bistro interior”.