Fresh from the finals of hit TV cookery show Masterchef; The Professionals Carnoustie contender Dean Banks has unveiled ambitious plans to open his own restaurant.
Dean, who narrowly missed out on the top spot on Thursday after winning through to the closing round in the televised cooking contest, intends to start a seafood diner in Edinburgh – with Angus produce at the top of the menu.
The globe-trotting private chef hopes his time in the TV spotlight and his culinary experience, earned in venues such the Balmoral Hotel in Edinburgh and the Tides Lodge in Tanzania, will be a recipe for success.
And he is determined to put the finest fare from his home county at the top of his list of ingredients.
Dean said: “I love visiting Arbroath harbour, but it’s a shame to see all this amazing produce such as lobster and crab being landed at the port, and then being put straight on to the back of a lorry and driven to Spain.
“I want to see more of the catch stay in Scotland and be enjoyed here.”
He is eyeing a city-centre location, with space for 30 to 40 covers initially, and ambitions to seat up to 80 in time.
The concept would be simple, affordable dishes with a global twist.
The 29-year old dad added: “We already have one investor, but would be happy to talk to other interested parties.
Mr Banks has hit the ground running since his return to Scotland from Switzerland and has already helped provide a Christmas meal for the homeless in Dundee.
He used some of his professional contacts to source food and other supplies for the lunch at the Steeple church and fed more than 100 people — just hours before sitting down with his family to watch the Masterchef final.
It has been a busy old time for him, with his first-born son, Felix, arriving just last week.
He also spent a day at his old school in Arbroath giving careers advice and teaching pupils how to cook a nutritious meal.
“It’s great to be back in Scotland, and I’m really keen to put something back into the community,” he said.