Why is Michelin-starred Cellar in Anstruther changing to tasting menu only?

The  Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 19th September 2018

Chef-owner Billy Boyter of the Michelin-starred Cellar in Anstruther reveals he is moving to a tasting menu only offering.

Further to its reopening after taking a summer break, chef Billy Boyter has announced that his Fife-based Michelin-starred restaurant will only offer diners a nine-course tasting menu as part of a ‘new creative direction’.

Speaking to The Staff Canteen, Billy revealed why he wanted to move to a singular tasting menu offering and said: “We wanted to refine and improve our food offering and the same as other people in the industry right now – staffing is a problem and we wanted to create consistency in what we do. By moving to this menu, it gives us a lot more structure and consistency. We feel that there are benefits all around!”

Billy admits that he has a very loyal customer base who ‘love what they do’ and that the prospect of the menu evolving and becoming more refined is very exciting for them, therefore the nine-course tasting menu isn’t too much of a departure for his guests.

Tasting menus have certainly caused a bit of a divide within the industry of late, in July we spoke to chefs Sat Bains and Dom Robinson about the culinary concept. Sat believes that tasting menus are a good thing and told the Staff Canteen that: "From a guest’s perspective, we’ve had nothing but positive feedback over the years, which is why we only do them now."

In comparison, Dom has quite a contrasting view with regards to the benefits of tasting menus. He said: "People will forget how to actually cook proper food in the traditional format. What's wrong with starter, main and dessert?"

So what does Billy think about the recent debate over the concept of tasting menus?

“Everyone is going to be different in terms of what is going to work for them," he said. "For us, we have been doing a seven-course menu anyway with a choice of certain courses, so it is not much different from what we have been doing. It’s an extra two courses and we are taking away the choice element that we had.

“In all honesty, I would say about 90% of our customers would choose the same thing anyway and the feedback that we have had from guests has all been really positive.”

He also revealed that alongside the menu changes, that the restaurant has undergone a refurb and there have been some staffing changes too but he is very much looking forward to the reopening which takes places on October 4.

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The  Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 19th September 2018

Why is Michelin-starred Cellar in Anstruther changing to tasting menu only?