Elgin local Andy is getting back to his roots by opening his first restaurant.
He’s buzzing with excitement at this new project - an upmarket restaurant for Elgin - something he says is a first for the Speyside town.
Along with his business partner, Andy found a premises as he explained: “We met in January and very quickly decided to open a restaurant together, so started searching for a premises.
"We eventually found what was a travel agent and cafe in the centre of Elgin and there’s space here for a 60 seat restaurant.”
Named Orrin, the restaurant is upmarket, but Andy is keen to stress it’s not fine dining in an old fashioned or stuffy sense.
He said: “In Moray there’s a lack of upmarket places to go and eat. Without labelling it as such, we do want it to be a fine dining restaurant and are planning a six course tasting menu as well as an a la carte menu and a smaller lunch menu, making it accessible.”
The name also ties into the concept, as Andy explained: “Orrin means little green one, which suits our branding, but it also means to be special and stand out.
"In Elgin, it’s completely different from anything else, as there’s lots of cafes and bistros but nothing at a luxury level.
"We are looking at luxury but at very affordable prices. We're not looking to appeal to everyone but we want it to be possible for everyone to afford to come and dine here.”
There’s a private dining room at the back, and a range of booth seating which is spacious enough to not need altering, should social distancing come back.
Orrin will showcase the best produce, which will mainly be Scottish and local, but not always as Andy explained: “There will be local suppliers who I have a relationship with, but I don’t want to just focus on local.
"There will be an emphasis on Scottish produce for sure, but I am also looking for the best quality.
"So if I am going to use olives on the menu, for example, you can’t get those here so I’ll go for the best. Same with things like prosciutto But as much as I possibly can, I’ll support local businesses on the menu.”
Orrin is due to be completed in the next few weeks, and will open four days a week in line with changes in the hospitality industry.
Andy said: “we really want to build an environment that's fun and happy."
This venture is personal for Andy, who grew up in Elgin and has always wanted to have his own restaurant there. He said: “I moved to Glasgow when I was 17 and then travelled the world but when I started cheffing, I always wanted to return to Elgin and open something special and different.
"Elgin hasn’t had a restaurant like this before ever. This is bringing everything I have learned over the years to Elgin and it’s a dream come true.”
To find out more about Orrin and book, visit their website.