2011 in Food: May and June

May and June were busy for both new openings and daft stories.

According to several newspaper reports, Denmark banned Marmite as it apparently fell foul of the country’s laws on food products with added vitamins.

Meanwhile, Budweiser advertised for someone to be their beer executive officer at live music festivals. The job description was simple: travel around the country delivering Bud 66 to rock stars and superstar DJs at big music festivals.

Naturally, such a hard task deserves executive pay and the beer company offered £10k for six days ‘work’.

Glasgow played host to lots of new launches. Heavenly, a vegan cafe, bar and live music venue, opened, appropriately enough, in National Vegetarian Week. On the site of the former L’Ariosto, Barolo Grill began to welcome new customers and has been going great guns ever since.

This may, or may not, be the man behind Glasgow Mega Burrito

On Queen Street, Pinto opened and began spreading the word about freshly made burritos. It was a well timed launch as the city appears to be in the grip of burrito madness. For a terrifying glimpse into the depths of burrito obsession, try the Glasgow Mega Burrito blog but be warned, it is very sweary.

The other big West Coast opening was Scotts at Largs Yacht Haven. A Buzzworks operation, the new bar and restaurant features a salt water aquarium boasting bay sharks, seahorses and even Clown Fish, a species better known to the under tens as Nemo.

Edinburgh’s restaurant scene was just as frothy. The Vat and Fiddle at the foot of Lothian Road was replaced by the Red Squirrel bar.

Part of the Fuller Thomson bar portfolio which also owns Duke’s Corner and Jute in Dundee plus The Holyrood in Edinburgh, Red Squirrel is a beer lover’s paradise.

Bluerapa is a tiny new Thai on Torphichen Place in Edinburgh’s West End while Jacksons on the Royal Mile was replaced by a new Indian, Bonoful. Sticking with Indian restaurants, Tanjore, a south Indian restaurant opened its doors in Newington. Koyama, on Forrest Road, was a new Japanese restaurant.

In Leith, Jean Michel Gauffre took over Daniel’s Bistro and turned it into La Garrigue Bistro. After appearing on Gordon Ramsay’s Best Restaurant TV show, Gauffre’s restaurants have boomed.

The Whiski Bar and Restaurant on Edinburgh High Street also launched a new branch. The Whiski Rooms are on North Bank Street, just up from the National Galleries complex. A whisky shop with a tasting room, a bar and bistro, it promises a very Scottish menu to go with the hundreds of different malts they stock.

The Scottish Steak Club: not really designed with salad lovers in mind

The Macdonald Hotel group have not been resting on their laurels in the kitchen. The Macdonald in North Berwick launched the new John Paul restaurant and the Macdonald Inchyra Hotel in Polmont opened the Scottish Steak Club. A name that tells you exactly what is on the menu.