Food & Drink



11-13 Grassmarket, Edinburgh, 0131 229 2665

What began with Metro on the Grassmarket in Edinburgh may be refined a bit further with the more sensibly sized bar alba. Once the premises of the traditional. hard- bitten Fiddler's pub. the new look is about as dramatically different as you might imagine beginning with the sans serif. all lower-case logo.

Lots of transparent windows dominate the corner site. with interiors done in a light creamy colour scheme. The bar has no stools. and tables are perpetually set for dining until 6 to 8pm daily. Two modern steel sculptures hang on the equally obligatory exposed stone wall.

The feel at least until the kitchen closes is distinctly bistro-ish. appealing directly to the aspirational class of yOung urban professional. mature student and stray tourist. while still entirely casual. The only inexplicable feature from a designer's point of view is the ‘Lockbuster' games machine. whose maniacally flashing lights you can see from halfway up the square.

Open since mid-Deceml_)er, Alba only recently settled on a permanent menu. You'll find nachos (8:13.50). baguettes (23.254305), cheese and tomato quiche (Sf/1.95) as well as daily specials such as mild Madras chicken or egg noodle stir fry ($713.95). Food is freshly prepared and alba's management is not afraid that people might arrive with heightened expectations. (Barry Shelby)

The Fiddler’s gets more gentrified

NEW TOWN FAST MEZZ 49-51 London Street, Edinburgh, 0131 556 9808

The foot of the capital's Broughton Street has generally provrded the traditional pubs to balance the lll()l'(‘r stylish, happening places at the top end of the road. But that equilibrium may be unsettled with Me/x. Edinburgh's Rough Design architects have gutted the old Bellevue to create an interior with leather upholstered stools and benches for over 50 punters. From the strong purple plum me77anine. atop a half-«flight of stairs with an exposed brick f Billtll'O. you look down onto the main bar V/llll its half—inch ply gantry. Artwork was specially commissioned from Nichol Wheatley studios in Glasgow. There are no televisions. no 0st and for some early visitors. a common complaint was little atmosnhr-zre. Hut Mex.l has had a

So does the old Bellevue

quiet start, hamstrung by the festive season interruption to the renovation, delaying the correction of ‘snagging items'. As this goes to prirtt. a new menu and cocktails list were being perfected.

Open until lam nightly. food is served until 8pm. lBariy Shelby)

' I Sunday Lunch

On Sunday aflcrnaun ()ni' rlzq/S' pit/2am w a superb and z'mzoitatz'i’r nn’nn.

: Relax and enjoy a it’(Hl/lrfifitlfear-6011736 ~ mm ° lane/J and [IL/flair (iffizz.

Excellent value at L’ I 7. 5 0 per person.

12 Ashton lanc 'ch 0141—334 5007

106 THE LIST fit .iiw r1; r. j)’


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