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Have you tried these Tayside restaurants and cafes that opened during the pandemic?

Giddy Goose Perth
Life size tree inside The Giddy Goose, Perth.

Despite the restrictions and rules around hospitality, the pandemic has also created opportunities for entrepreneurs to try their hand at a new trade and follow their dreams.

While some restaurants and cafes in Tayside have adapted and offered up takeaway services, new restaurateurs have managed to establish their learned skills in lockdown and have provided employment for their local communities.

This listicle outlines those venues that opened in Tayside throughout the pandemic and who provided us with new options to try during lockdown.

The Selkie – Dundee

Tapas and family-run eatery, The Selkie, joined the Dundee food and drink scene in September 2020.

Delighted owners Kelly and Paul Fairweather said that despite Covid-19, lower overheads made them decide the pandemic was the perfect chance to open a new venue.

The couple already run the Scarlet Bakery in Newport but brought on board daughter Sophie and son-in-law Robbie Jack for this new family venture.

Address: 27 Exchange Street, Dundee, DD1 3DJ

The Cannon – Dundee

Scott Cannon, who has opened various other cafes in the area, decided to launch The Cannon on Union Street in Dundee in October 2021.

The local wanted to add to the already bolstering café scene and has taken over where the former The Palais Tea Room once operated after closing down during the pandemic.

Specialising in offering breakfast and brunch, the eatery also offers lunch and is open until 4pm six days a week, except Tuesdays.

Address:11 Union Street, Dundee, DD1 4BN

Vandal & Co – Dundee

As of April 27 last year, Dundee welcomed Vandal & Co to its list of eateries, catering to vegetarian, gluten-free, dairy-free and vegan diets, with dishes to suit all appearing on their menu.

The new street food offering is run by Jonnie Armitage and his business partner, Corey Buxton, with chef Nicholas Kock behind the scenes in the kitchen.

Jonnie and Corey decided to turn their dream of running a restaurant into a reality, with the eatery now being a popular favourite for Dundonians.

Address: 22-26 Exchange Street, Dundee, DD1 3DL

Milas – Dundee

If you are looking for Turkish food to enjoy, then Milas has a range of offerings to sample for both lunch and dinner.

The venue is known or its meat platters and hummus with flatbreads, alongside their top service.

However, this eatery prefers to maintain a more low key profile and has to be visited to enjoy the full food and experience.

Address: 5 Whitehall Street, Dundee, DD1 4AA

Smoked B-B-Q – Dundee

Smoked B-B-Q launched its kitchen residency at Captain’s Cabin on Ward Road to the public on August 26 2021, bringing a new smokehouse offering to the city centre.

The partnership came with Chris Symonds, who owns 3 Session Street and Tom’s on Temple Lane, teaming up with Simon Cruickshank and Sean Bennet, tenants of Captain’s Cabin.

With a whole range of barbecue and smokehouse favourites on the menu, customers can enjoy everything from a range of small plates, smoked goods and sharing dishes.

Address: 3 Session Street, Dundee, DD1 5DN

Mazaj – Dundee

If you are in the mood for Turkish food with the wow factor then Mazaj on Reform Street is just the place.

With their sharing meat platters and fresh tabbouleh the restaurant has been described as a “cultural extravaganza”.

Mazaj brought a new offering to the heart of Dundee with their authentic flavours and reasonable price for locals to enjoy.

Address: 48-54 Reform Street, Dundee, DD1 1RX

Giddy Goose – Perth

Owners Lauren and Calum Runciman behind successful small independent hospitality the Giddy Goose opened their third venue in December 2021 in Perth.

The owners opened the first venue in Dundee, with the Angus venue opening in April 2021. The Perth site is their biggest venue to date and Lauren and Calum invested a six-figure sum into the premises.

With a capacity of 107 covers inside and seating for 50 outside in the Giddy bohemian beer garden, which will launch in spring, the Giddy Goose has brought a new offering to Perth including its popular pot-tails – cocktails served in plant pots.

Address:1 St Johns Place, Perth, PH1 5SZ

Blasta – Perth

Perthshire chef David Barnett was able to work on his new restaurant Blasta – Gaelic for tasty – while he was furloughed as executive chef at the five-star Fonab Castle Hotel.

He secured and completely refurbished his second property to serve up traditional fish suppers and pizzas to hungry households.

After the launch of the restaurant, David returned briefly to the Fonab Castle to arrange for a new chef to take his place.

Address: 5 King Street, Stanley, Perth, PH1 4ND

Killiecrankie House – Perthshire

Located in the heart of Highland Perthshire, Killiecrankie House opened to the public in October 2021.

Owners, chef Tom Tsappis and his sommelier wife Matilda welcome guests to experience their take on luxury dining in the heart of Cairngorm National Park.

Diners get to enjoy a taste of the country’s produce including venison, peat and brambles and dishes including squid from the firth of Moray cooked in a stew of its own ink and whisky.

Address: Killiecrankie House, Perthshire, PH16 5LG