Euan McGrory: Victims of Edinburgh's new '˜cuisine quarter'
It's true, you can have too much of a good thing.
The flurry of restaurants opening in and around St Andrew Square have established the area as the Capital’s new ‘cuisine quarter’. Gaucho, Dishoom, Wagamama, Vapiano and The Ivy on the Square, soon to be joined by Di Maggio’s in the neighbouring Registers development, mean you have probably never had so much choice of interesting places to eat in the city centre.
It seems on the surface to be a glorious state of affairs, but there is growing concern about the impact all these new venues will have in the longer term. You might think that if there are now too many restaurants fighting for customers (and highly trained kitchen staff) in the city centre - then that’s a good thing for diners. Only the best, or those offering the best value for money, will survive. That’s fine... isn’t it?
The complication comes in the fact that all the newcomers are part of chains, better placed to see out the inevitable lean times than our home-grown independents, like Valvona & Crolla’s Vin Caffe, which has just shut up shop on Multrees Walk. Sure, all the demolition work going on beside it was certainly a factor, but other local restaurateurs are feeling the squeeze too.