Good Food Comes to Those Who Wait

by Aimee Lawrence

Thursday, May 23rd, 2013

Dean Gassbi, owner of renowned French restaurant in Edinburgh, Maison Bleue

Dean Gassabi: Quality takes time

The popularity of fast food outlets in Edinburgh is having a disproportionate effect on diner’s expectations when it comes to service as Dean Gassabi, owner of Maison Bleue restaurant recently found out.

The Edinburgh stalwart which offers a selection of French, North African and Scottish cuisine is currently offering a special lunch menu priced at £5 for one course and £7.50 for two courses, as part of its 15 year anniversary celebrations.

While the menu has been popular with customers old and new so far, there was one group of diners which left staff at the restaurant more than perplexed when they complained after waiting a mere 10 minutes for their food to arrive.

The group of young diners expressed concerns over the length of time taken after ordering the Chicken Supreme – chicken breast wrapped in jambon de Bayonne in a gruyere cheese sauce – a dish which takes around 15 to 20 minutes to be cooked thoroughly.


Owner Dean was left flabbergasted when he heard what had happened and believes that a culture of poor quality fast food has left diners more demanding and less patient, even when it comes to fine dining.

He said: “Everything on our menu whether it costs £5 or £30 is prepared fresh, using only the finest quality ingredients from local suppliers and this is what helps us stand out from the crowd and has helped us stand the test of time.

“Fifteen years ago, customers would never have questioned waiting over ten minutes for their meal, as they appreciated the quality of the food and had an understanding that good food takes time to cook.

“Now however it seems to be a very different story, which begs the question; is the increasing accessibility to fast food restaurants ruining our enjoyment of going out to a restaurant and sitting down to, eat a freshly cooked meal?


“Everyone knows it takes more than ten minutes to cook chicken. When cooking at home it takes at least twenty minutes to ensure chicken is thoroughly cooked. Now imagine cooking dishes like this fresh everyday for over 200 people and you will get some sort of handle of how long it takes to prepare our dishes.

“Yes our menu is cheap, but that doesn’t mean we will be forgoing quality and while we want as many people as possible to enjoy our offering, those who are looking for a fast food lunch should instead stick to McDonalds and Burger King.”

Maison Bleue’s special lunch menu is available every day Sunday to Thursday from 12noon to 6.30pm and Friday and Saturday 12 noon to 6pm by booking through the restaurant’s website

Launched in 1998, Maison Bleue on Victoria Street in Edinburgh’s Old Town has been offering French cuisine with a Scottish twist for the last 15 years and has been popular with residents and tourists thanks to its quality food and service and affordable prices.

A series of themed events are planned at the restaurant in the run up to the anniversary in August – menu and booking details plus event information can be found at

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