My long suffering husband started Howies 21 years ago and sold up 5 years ago thinking it was time to move on. So you can imagine when we heard that Howies Retaurants had gone into administration we were gutted.
The year we met I was doing the breakfast show on Radio Forth FM and he was wittering on about wanting to start his own restaurant. After a particularly long late night which ended in me poking him the shoulder and saying ‘well for goodness sake stop talking about it and get on with it’ before collapsing face down. So he did.
The story of Howies is a long and amusing tale. One I been thinking about a lot in the past few months as we have been through the process of wrangling with an administrator to secure the sites we wanted.
In the ideal world we would have bought back the whole lot but what are we the Onassis family?
Also to be honest in this economic climate we had to look at it with our heads not just our hearts.
So we plumped for Waterloo Place, the beauitful Georgian building at the end of Princes St., Victoria Street cos it’s my favourite street in Edinburgh and Chapel Street Aberdeen – well I am from Aberdeen and when we bought it years ago it was called Gerards where I used to work as a waitress when still at school before being sacked after scalding an Americans leg. (Another story).
So once more into the breach. And it feels like that.
Day 1 of taking over I looked round the car. 2 boxes of crackers, an Edwardian chest, a life jacket, a box of flyers, 8 loafs, a battered old chandalier, a squashed and grumpy looking dog – I felt like I was in an acid inspired episode of The Generation Game. Pulling up outside the restaurant I found David teetering on a ladder.
OK? I asked
Yeh he nodded wobbling
Yeh but I’m starving
And then I remembered the irony of having 3 restaurants and forgetting to eat ah that old chestnut.
Still someone snapped a photo of the two of us…before we rushed off for a bowl of beef casserole and mashed tatties….and cracked on…..well there’s a lot to do!