lemm— Smoke Stack lightning
Something’s cooking in Edinburgh’s Broughton Street. Jonathan Trew’s nose finds there’s no smoke without fire.
Cast your mind back a couple of years to the time when Broughton Street wasn’t the hotbed of party action that it is now. Sure there were. and there still are. a good number of solid boozers where you could get a decent pint. some pub grub and a blether while watching the footie on the box. It was comfortable. cosy and traditional. All of which was ﬁne and dandy but energetic is not a particularly apt description of the state of affairs.
Then along came The Basement. Situated on the former site of The Joug. a pub so spectacularly unsuccessful that three people through the doors in an hour was a rush, The Basement tumed the perceived pub concept on its head. It‘s a style bar in that its design is radically different from that of the normal pub but it doesn’t suffer from the creeping contagion of trying to be
cooler-than-thou. The staff are neither aloof nor obsequious but bizarrely normal. Best of all, they do reasonably- priced food right through the day until the later stretches of the evening. No more having to eat between noon and 2pm or from 5pm onwards. Now, the people who brought us The Basement have turned their attention to the restaurant business.
On the opposite side of the road from The Basement there used to be a Chinese restaurant called Loon Moon. From Monday 4 November, it will be
7 Old Mhmarket Clo“ called Smoke Stack, it will serve char- 4 grilled food and it will be run by the Edinburgh brother and sister team who run The a . lunch and (ﬁrmer Basement. The aim is to provide all l Monday to Thursday all day , manner of char-grilled food from steaks 1 Friday and Saturday . to chicken to home-made burgers via ; . S da dmn n1 . seafood and char-grilled vegetables and 3 m ya er 0 y a ' serve it all up in a similar atmosphere ' telephone to that of The Basement but in more
‘ luxurious surroundings. There are two separate dining areas that can handle 50-60 diners and the
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Stack is hoping to attract the same range of customers as the pub. with business and office people coming in for lunch and a younger crowd moving in at night. While the menu prices haven't been set in stone at the time of writing. diners can reckon on paying around £ l O for lunch and £15—£2() for a
Look out for the likes of buffalo steaks and char-grilled calun trogs’ legs and don’t be too surprised should ostrich make the occasional appearance on the menu.
three-course dinner. While the menu will be fixed on certain dishes. Smoke Stack will be offering daily specials that are a bit out of the ordinary. Look out for the likes ofbuffalo steaks and char-grilled cajun frogs' legs and don’t
Smoke Stack: grilled to thrill
be too surprised should ostrich make the occasional appearance on the menu. Drinks-wise. there will be a select wine list and, unusually fora restaurant but welcome nonetheless. a decent range of draught and bottled beers will be available as opposed to the standard restaurant beer choice of yellow or brown. Cocktail fans won’t be disappointed and the margeritas come highly recommended.
On the design front. the proprietors have, with the help of local artists, opted for a warm. natural look with wooden floors and bar. A special mention in dispatches must go to the chairs. some of which are sturdily built in leather with backs that have little horns projecting from them like bulls. All of which is very pleasant but design
A is nothing without personality. Sufﬁce
to say, if you like The Basement then, chances are. that you‘ll enjoy Smoke Stack.
Smoke Slack. 53 Brougham Street. 556 6032.
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106 The List l-l4 Nov 1996