Chef Tom Kitchin to expand out of Edinburgh base with Gullane takeover

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He is one of the country’s top chefs and, along with his wife, has created some of Edinburgh’s most celebrated restaurants.

Now Tom Kitchin is set to expand his empire a little further east with the opening of a new venture in the East Lothian coastal village of Gullane.

Picture: Tom and Michaela Kitchin, supplied

Picture: Tom and Michaela Kitchin, supplied

Dubbed the Bonnie Badger, the pub with rooms will see Kitchin’s wife Michaela take the lead on the interior design, and the Swedish-born restaurateur is taking inspiration from Scotland’s natural resources and her own Scandinavian heritage to transform The Golf Inn.

Located a stone’s throw from the world famous Muirfield golf course and just a 30-minute drive from Edinburgh, the hotel, which dates from 1836, features 12 bedrooms, a bar and a 60 cover dining room. The Michelin-starred chef said he decided to expand the Kitchin Group, which includes Edinburgh’s Castle Terrace Restaurant and The Scran & Scallie, after visiting Gullane to view the Golf Inn following its recent closure.

He said: “We really love the property and feel that we can create something really special here. Our teams within Kitchin Group are growing and there is a lot of very talented and ambitious people working with us.

“We have always had a genuine love of hotels and all aspects of hospitality. My wife’s background and training was very hotel-led and it’s always been a shared dream to one day have our own wee place. A pub with rooms just seems like the right thing to do.”

Scotland’s youngest Michelin-starred chef proprietor, having achieved a star aged just 29, Kitchin worked with the likes of Pierre Koffmann, Guy Savoy and Alain Ducasse before launching The Kitchin, in Leith, in June 2006.

His “from nature to plate” ethos has seen him win plaudits at his flagship restaurant and this is something he is keen to transfer to the menu for the Bonnie Badger, which will offer simple pub classics and comfort dishes.

He said: “We will work closely with local suppliers. We will only ever work with seasonal produce and I am hoping to find a few new suppliers once we get going.

“I really aim to be able to work closely with the local community and get to know our new neighbours.”

He added: “We very much want to keep the heart of the building but embrace it and bring out some features in the design. It will be child-friendly just like its sister restaurant, The Scran & Scallie, and also offer privacy for guests who wish to escape Edinburgh for the night or weekend.”