Edinburgh restaurateurs raise a toast to Scots produce

Victor and Carina Contini talk through the process and inspiration behind the new-look Scottish Café & Restaurant

THE rain didn’t dampen spirits in Edinburgh last night (October 10) as hundreds of guests flooded The Scottish Cafe & Restaurant to celebrate its relaunch.

Edinburgh restaurateurs Carina and Victor Contini, who also own and operate Contini on George Street and the Cannonball Restaurant & Bar on the Royal Mile, carried out a seven-month refurbishment of the Scottish Café & Restaurant earlier this year – and raised a glass to the new-look restaurant at a special event last night.

As well as improved accessibility from Princes Street Gardens, the venue, which is located in the Scottish National Gallery, has a new interior designed by Jackie Fisken of Edinburgh’s Ampersand – and includes the first commercial commission for Scottish textile designer, Mairi Helena.

A focus on all things Scottish can be seen on the restaurant’s menu too. Last night’s guests sampled various bites from the menu, including Belhaven smoked salmon, Amalfi lemon dill tuile and Katy Rodger’s crème fraiche served on oatcakes; free range chicken club butterie, Edinburgh Bacon Co. bacon, Isle of Mull cheddar, tomato chutney and salad leaves; and glazed Ramsay of Carluke pork belly.

The Scottish Café & Restaurant was packed as guests gathered to celebrate its new look

Drinks on offer included Edinburgh Gin Lemon & Jasmine, paired with Bon Accord tonic, ice and lemon peel, as well as Victor and Carina Contini Prosecco.

Carina Contini commented: “We very much look forward to sharing the Victor Welcome and delivering a five-star visitor experience for all our guests in our beautiful new restaurant. Our favourite dishes are as good, if not better, than ever. The space is now on one level which adds a whole new energy – and we’re all loving it.”