The Garden Bistro opened just ten months ago today.

Now, they can celebrate the reopening of outdoor dining following months of uncertainty for the hospitality sector. 

Situated within the leafy surrounds of the Walled Garden at Saughton Park, the Bistro has become a haven for local families throughout lockdown as a safe space to meet and socialise.   

While lockdown has had a fundamental impact on the sector, the Bistro has been able to remain agile and modify operations in line with Scottish Government guidelines and restrictions, welcoming nearly 20,000 customers for seated dining during 2020.

As a new addition to Edinburgh’s café and restaurant scene, the local community have been crucial in the bistro’s success and the ongoing support has allowed CEC-Catering, the team behind The Garden Bistro, the opportunity to create 20 full time positions.  In a nod to the ongoing success of bistro, today the team announce the appointment of new Group Executive Chef, Gavin Elden. 

Gavin Elden

As a new addition to Edinburgh’s café and restaurant scene, the local community have been crucial in the bistro’s success and the ongoing support has allowed CEC-Catering, the team behind The Garden Bistro, the opportunity to create 20 full time positions.  In a nod to the ongoing success of bistro, today the team announce the appointment of new Group Executive Chef, Gavin Elden. 

With a celebrated career in hospitality, Gavin has held Head Chef positions at The Tower, Prestonfield, Le Monde and the Radisson Collection, bringing a wealth of experience and knowledge to the team.   As Group Head Chef for CEC-Catering, Gavin has been instrumental in developing a new menu for The Garden Bistro, building on its ethos of using local, sustainable produce, with many dishes benefitting from the herbs, salads and edible flowers grown on site.  New dishes include: 

  • Warmed leek & artichoke galette 
  • Crushed pea, mint & ricotta bruschetta 
  • Spiced dahl with fried aubergine and flash pickled red onion  
  • Lightly spiced lemon chicken with warmed bulgar wheat & a Mediterranean vegetable salad 
  • Cranachan vs Eton mess smash and 
  • Garden Bistro warmed chocolate brownie with caramel sauce 

Director Chris Davidson said: “The last twelve months have been one of the most difficult on record for the hospitality sector.  We’ve been fortunate that we have a great team who are constantly able to adapt and modify our operations to ensure we’re able to continue to serve our customers.   As restrictions start to ease and we look to return to a form of normality, it’s timely that The Garden Bistro enters its next phase of development with the appointment of Gavin. 

“We’re delighted to welcome him to the growing Bistro team as he adds his unique creative flair to our menus and dishes.  As we look to the summer months we’re excited to welcome weddings and events to the Bistro and its surrounding gardens for the first time.  Our thanks go to the local community and our loyal customers for their ongoing and unwavering support.” 

Group Executive Chef, Gavin Elden said: “Over the last twelve months I’ve watched as The Garden Bistro has evolved to be one of the most exciting new spaces within Edinburgh’s café and restaurant scene.  As our industry starts to recover from lockdown it’s an exciting time to join and lead our creative team of chefs in the next phase of the Bistro’s development.” 

The Garden Bistro opens for outdoor dining from Monday 26 April and will continue to operate its popular Bistro To Go takeaway for those looking to enjoy a meal or snack on the move.