tmmnnnmmnlln A star in the
Not normally known for its cosmopolitan outlook, the Anderston area of Glasgow now boasts a new Mediterranean restaurant. Rory Weller embraces it firmly and kisses it on both cheeks.
()wnet' Alan Lessani took a bold decision when he decided to open his new restaurant at the less salubt'ious end of Argyle Street. a district more associated with ladies of the nigltt than litre Mediterranean cuisine. All around him businesses and shops are closing up and moving otrt attd the mess of All around him businesses and shops are closing up and moving out and the mess of concrete that was the Anderston bus station is now in the final stages of demolition. Lessani reckoned that the site was perfect for the kind of restaurant he had envisaged.
concrete that was the Anderston btts station is now itt the final stages of detnolitiort. Lessani reckoned that the site was perfect for the kind of restaurant he had envisaged. With detnolition comes rebttilding and a new development. Cadogan Square. is about to improve the ambience of the area between Central Station arid the MS. The Ministry of Defence ltave offices around the corner and the classy
Fooo & DRINK
:'\~lat'riott attd Hilton hotels are just along the street.
Lessani took this former leather suite centre and transformed it into the colourful. airy restaurant. A vaulted brick ceiling was ttrtcovered and. designing the interior himself. he has used rich reds. azure blues and sandy yellows iii the decor to complement the French/Italian menu. A star motif is repeated irt the metal seat backs artd the glass light shades. while metal air conditioning pipes streak ottt above the tables attd artistically wrap around the
Already. Cafe L‘Etoile has been doing brisk business with the like of rockers Gun and Del Amitri booking tables there. During the T in the Park weekend the place was filled with various celebs and media types. yet despite such illustrious clientele the food is not excessively priced with a three-course meal averaging at around the ten pound mark.
The tnentt combines French and
Summer seems to have more or less arrived. which means that it's time to drag the barbie ottt of whichever glory hole it‘s been festering itt since last year. scrape the rust off it and then decide that it would be better to pay someone else to barbecue your food for you.
Enter Khublai Khan’s Mongolian Barbecue. a novel eating experience situated in l.eith. Edinburgh. Legend has it that in the murky depths of the l3th century. Mongolian warriors otin dismounted frotn their horses to sleep arid eat. Needless to say. being fearless soldiers and great advocates of a bit of rape and pillage. carrying a full set of Le Creuset pots arid pans around with thetn
was a bit of a hindrance. not to mentiott a bit on the effeminate side. The lads thus came up with the bright idea ofcooking their food on upturned sltields over a fire. in a kind of makeshift wok sci-Up.
Modern day aficionados of Khublai Khan-style t'epasts cart leave their shields at home attd ltave one of Khan's warriors slave over the hot stove. The idea behind this restaurant is very simple: customers choose their owrt meats. poultry. fish. vegetables. spices. herbs and sauces from a cold cabinet. pile them up itt a bowl attd take them over to the hot plate where the ingredients will be cooked itt front of you in a matter of rnirtutes. Should your judgement be completely awry arid you‘ve foolishly assetnbled a
Frankenstein's monster of ingredients and mis- matched flavours then you’ve only got yourself to blame and it doesn't matter anyway since you‘re free to visit the buffet as many times as yott wattt. There are a series of recommended combinations of ingredients on the wall for the cack-hattded iii the kitchen who can't be left to their own devices.
At £9.50 for the eat-till- you-explode buffet. Khan's is both fun and filling. One word of warning: try to avoid going when there's a big party itt. At these times. queueing for your food to be cooked cart put a dampener on that quiet evening (I dour.
K/tuhlui Klimt 'x A’Iungu/imt Btll'lu't'lu' 43 A.\'.\'(‘Ill/)/_\‘Sll't't’l. ' Ift/t'ttltmjelt. 555 0005.
ltaliatt recipes with Scottish produce. seafood being a speciality. Pasta. baguettes and salads are all under live pounds and. for those willing to spend a little more. there are salmon and beef steaks. Olive oil is itt abundance and cream makes a frequent appearance. turning up in many ofthe dishes.
Menu highlights include French ortiott sottp. with fresh thyme and port with gruyet'e cheese. char-grilled lobster with a letnort and butter sauce. attd dark
Cate L’étoile: an oasis In a concrete jungle
bitter chocolate tet't'ine served with an apricot cottlis. l)aily specials depend on market availability and tend to a fish theme. A two-course business lunch is £4.95. with a third course only a pound tttore.
Evert though Cafe L'Etoile may seem slightly incongruous with its current neighbours it is bringing a shine to art area on the up.
Cafe [Klimt/e. 363 Alger/e .S'Ireel. (Ilusgmr. 22/ 5552.
exuding discreet charm . .
A ‘QUENELLE' IS A DUMPLING . . .
“Make a discovery . . . intimate 'clubby’ atmosphere . . .
. for the Edinbourgeoisie." Scotland on Sunday 3/3/96
South Learmonth Gardens Edinburgh EH4 IEZ Tel Ol 3l~3l5~2225 Fax Ol 3|~332~963l
. . . AND IS ACTUALLY FROM THE GERMAN, ‘KNéDLE'
The List 26 Jul-8 Aug I996 91