The owners of a new Scottish-themed tapas bar and restaurant hope to offer diners a range of traditional Scottish dishes, with a twist.
An investment group has taken over premises in Manor Street in Falkirk, formerly home to Amodo Mio, with the aim of serving a selection of Scottish-themed tapas.
The latest coronavirus lockdown restrictions, coupled with some final interior renovations, mean the restaurant – named Christie’s Falkirk – is unlikely to open until March at the earliest, according to management.
Those involved behind the scenes regard the business venture as a “great opportunity” to introduce a new type of cuisine to the town.
Although an exact opening date is unclear, Falkirk-based owners Campbell Christie Property Investors are confident the wait will be worth it.
David Blackwood, Campbell Christie Property Investors director, said: “We started negotiations in June last year.
“Back then, we thought March would be a good marker. We were expecting a second wave so that’s what we started planning for and we’re still going full steam ahead for but that depends on what happens with the restrictions.
“When we were thinking about opening we thought, ‘What’s missing from Falkirk?’
“It’s over-saturated with Italian, Indian and Chinese restaurants. What’s missing is good old Scottish food but in small portions.
“A lot of people think tapas is Spanish but it just means a wee plate of food. We thought it was a great concept and conjures up images of sharing food with your family.
“We just see it as a great opportunity because when this is all over, people will want to get out there.”
Explaining the origin of the name, Mr Blackwood said: “My business partner and I were wanting something Scottish-sounding.
“We were trying to come up with something that involved both our names but couldn’t so we decided to use the street we lived in, Campbell Christie Crescent.
“It was always something I wanted to do. Myself and my business partner decided now is the time.
“With Covid, we’re taking lots of precautions. There’ll be less seating available when we open and we’re putting protective screens in.
“We may do home delivery to let people sample the food and get people talking.”
Christie’s has already been whetting social media users’ appetites by posting a series of online teasers to show customers what they can expect to see on its Scottish tapas themed menu.
From Scottish beef casserole with dough balls to haggis, neeps and tatties, there will be plenty to choose from for fans of Scottish fare.
The eatery will also offer a wide range of classic seafood dishes such as hot-smoked salmon, muscles and scallops.
Mr Blackwood says the opening of Christie’s could create up to 15 new jobs.
He added: “We’ve put a big emphasis on employing local people.
“The managers will start the recruitment process once we hear the next government update.
“To make a successful restaurant, there are three vital ingredients: an amazing offer of food, a welcoming environment and excellent service.
“For us, it’s about injecting a bit of fun into eating. There’s a bit of tongue in cheek on the menu with Scottish dialect. Children are going to love coming and so will adults.
“We’re also going to have dishes suitable for vegetarians, vegans and people with a gluten-free diet.”
A version of this article first appeared on our sister site, The Falkirk Herald