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AN INSTITUTION in Edinburgh’s New Town, the Wally Dug pub is kicking off celebrations this January for the 200th anniversary of a licensed premises on the spot. To mark the occasion, they’ve had a modest refurb, launched a cocktail list and are starting to do a bit more food.

THE SCOTCH Malt Whisky Society, which has private club status but bottles some

fascinating whiskies from single casks, has established a partnership with Hotel du Vin and Malmaison, with SMWS bottlings now available at 15 hotel spots around the UK including One Devonshire Gardens, Hotel du Vin Edinburgh and Aberdeen’s Malmaison. NEW YEAR, new cheese. Scottish cheesemaking is broadening its horizons all the time, with the latest arrival made by Humphrey Errington’s daughter Selina. Corra Linn is a six-month matured hard cheese made from unpasteurised ewe’s milk and modelled on Spanish Manchego. It’s available from Clarks Speciality Food.

BAR CRAWLER THE TIKI BAR 214 Bath Street, Glasgow

Inspired by the Polynesian-style cocktail bars that began in 1930s America, Glasgow’s first tiki bar and Scotland’s only is bringing some tropical escapism to the city’s dark wintry nights. There’s a range of potent fruity concoctions such as the Mai Tai, Zombie (two max per person) and Glasvegas Kiss, all served up in various ceramic tiki mugs and punch bowls. (Jay Thundercliffe)

The same Marlayne? One of Edinburgh’s much-loved French restaurants has relocated its second branch to a radically different part of town. Gemma Harris paid a visit

I f you’re familiar with Café Marlayne’s cosy Thistle Street the barn-like restaurant, proportions of their latest venture on Antigua Street may come as a surprise. High, white-washed walls, supersized glitterball and bold Ikea lampshades mean the new branch feels at odds with their unashamedly old-fashioned bistro food and copious quantities of candles and gilt-framed oils. Overall, the 80-seat interior is more Stockholm warehouse than Parisian hole-in-the-wall.

Nevertheless, the departure is deliberate. Having closed their second venue in Old Fishmarket Close off the Royal Mile, owners Islay Fraser and Marcelline Levicky hope to hook more passing trade here with a fluid all- day format. They’re opening for full Scottish breakfast and salmon and eggs from 9am to midday, and selling sandwiches, cakes and coffees from a small café at the front. There’s even free wi-fi to tempt iPad malingerers. As for lunch and dinner, c’est le

20 THE LIST 6–20 Jan 2011


Good meat, especially Scottish beef and lamb dishes Spacious interior suits daytime buzz but not evening intimacy

comfort food. The menu is pretty much a carbon copy of Thistle Street’s and remains good value. Unsurprisingly, given the location opposite the Playhouse and Omni centre, they’re also offering pre- theatre dinner deals (5pm to 7pm). Mains such as rib-eye steak with blue-cheese butter, roast duck breast in rich port gravy, and rack of lamb, are cooked pink and tender. Portions are generous and all come with a side of greens and

creamy, garlic-scented potato dauphinoise.

Seafood can be hit and miss: a starter of seared king scallops proves underdone and watery and mussels in garlic and Pernod too small to fare well under a hot grill. Desserts won’t win prizes for subtlety but they’re good, sweet and filling: the baked vanilla and honey cheesecake, in particular, has just the right wobble. If the sight of those hefty puddings defeats you, there’s always the cheese board from IJ Mellis. A trad French bistro that wants to be a hip, loft-style café . . . if it’s trying to be all things to all people it’s understandable in its early days. Just a few tweaks to lighting and layout and it may well happen.


13 Antigua Street, Leith Walk, Edinburgh, 0131 558 8244

Food served Mon–Thu 10am–10pm; Fri 10am–11pm; Sat 9am–11pm; Sun 9am–10pm. Ave. price two course meal £10.50 (set lunch) / £17 (dinner)