Jamie’s Italian at the newly refurbished Assembly Rooms on George Street

Flurry of activity as capital prepares for festivals

As Edinburgh braces itself for the festivals, the hospitality industry has seen a flurry of pre-season openings and revamps. Among the most high profile openings is Jamie’s Italian at the newly refurbished Assembly Rooms on George Street. The latest offering from the high-octane TV chef Jamie Oliver was certainly buzzing on its first weekend and the lavish décor is in dramatic contrast to the newly streamlined foyer to the Assembly Rooms. At the West End of Princes Street, the venerable Caledonian Hotel is anticipating the arrival of Michelin-starred chefs Chris and Jeff Galvin. After a £24 million restoration, the hotel will become a Waldorf Astoria Hotel boasting the Galvin’s Pompadour fine dining restaurant and a less formal Brasserie de Luxe.

One of the most innovate openings in the capital is the Gardiner’s Cottage, where chefs Dale Mailley and Edward Murray serve heavenly food to diners at communal tables. It’s a true dining experience and makes imaginative use of the little building in the gardens on London Road. Among Artmag’s old favourites receiving a revamp is the Smoke Stack (pictured) on Broughton Street. Here a contemporary lighter look has brought this popular steak house right up to date. With the new look comes all-day opening through the whole year and the invitation to drop in at any time for coffees, drinks or snacks.

Artmag’s review of Smoke Stack is on our website

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