Celebrated Edinburgh restaurant to close after chef’s death

The final service at acclaimed Scottish restaurant 21212 will take place on 1 April, following the death of chef patron Paul Kitching in December last year.

 

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Kitching and partner Katie O’Brian, both formerly of Juniper in Altrincham, moved north of the border and opened 21212 in a listed Georgian townhouse on Royal Terrace in 2009. The name was chosen as a reference to what the restaurant offered on its weekly changing menu: two first courses, one second course, two mains, cheese and two desserts.

Within eight months of opening, the restaurant received a coveted Michelin Star, which it lost in 2019. Critics praised Kitching’s ability to take his diners on a journey within each course, with The Guardian food and drink writer Matthew Fort comparing his dishes to “exquisite mobiles, different aspects of which reveal themselves as you munch your way through”.

Kitching died suddenly late last year at the age of 61. Today (23 March) would have been his 62nd birthday.

In a statement shared earlier this week, O’Brian announced that 21212 would be shutting its restaurant: “The passing of Paul has devastated all the team and the passion that runs through every fibre of the restaurant is not as evident as it was when he was alive – to us that is unacceptable to his memory.”

“It has been a whirlwind journey for all the team, past and present, since we opened in May 2009 and from the bottom of all our hearts we can’t thank you enough for your support over the years – we hope that you have lasting memories from your times spent with us in Edinburgh that you will cherish forever, we certainly do.”

Though the restaurant will cease to operate at the beginning of next month, the four bedrooms of the attached hotel will still be available for guests.

21212 shutting is the latest in a spate of high profile restaurant closures:

Acclaimed restaurant closes after landlord demands £30,000

Mark Sargeant closes restaurant just six months after opening

This article was originally published by the drinks business and has been shared with permission.

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