Our Story

Our Story

A young man named George, and a young woman called Pina, had a dream to come to Scotland for a better life.

George came to Scotland having no background in the catering industry; he was a Sheppard in the hills of his home town, Picinisco, Italy. Pina arrived in Scotland, from her home town of Salerno, with her sister and became a nursing assistant at the hospital in Edinburgh. They met through a mutual friend, fell in love and married in June 1966. Pina worked at the Luna Cafe in Edinburgh, whilst George built his knowledge working at the prestigious Prestonfield House Hotel. They then decided to move to Dalkeith, & the business was established in 1968 by George and Pina, better known as Mr & Mrs C

Officially now, both Mr & Mrs C have retired, however, you will quite often see them both supervising. Tony took over the running of the business from his parents in 2000, and has since been joined by his wife Gemma. The Cavaliere is now embarking on a new journey with a complete refurbishment of the entire premises. Here is a look into how the Cavaliere as we know and love it has evolved over the years.


Humble Beginnings

When Mr & Mrs C first came to Dalkeith, they took over a small shop named The central fish & Chop shop. The year after they did a small alteration and changed the name to THE BONNIE SCOTLAND, to include a seated area, this became one of Midlothian’s first restaurants!

Birth of the Cavaliere

After a lot of hard work and sacrifices, they bought over the insurance shop next door, and in 1971 THE CAVALIERE RESTAURANT & GEORGES PIZZA & SPAGHETTI HOUSE was born. It was a real family affair! Mrs C was in the kitchen creating the wonderful food, (and to this date we still use Mrs C’s secret recipe for Bolognese & Lasagne), Tony greeting the guests – with his

little bow tie – Gloria behind the bar (standing on a juice crate to see over) and Mr C running the show! Those were the days. After the birth of Little Tony, the BONNIE SCOTLAND changed its name to TONY’S FISH & CHICKEN BAR

Ever Changing...

After many more years of dedication, in 1997 the Cavaliere made an alteration to its current status. Not long after Gloria left the family business to start her own business and family, alongside husband Davide.

Wood-fired Pizzas for the Masses!

We knew it was time for change, so we embarked on the first stage of our alterations. We decided to merge both the Pizzeria takeaway and the Fish & chip shop into one, hence the creation of “THE CAVALIERE PIZZERIA & FISH BAR”. We have installed an authentic wood fired pizza oven, made fresh to order by one of our Italian Pizzaiolo’s.


Phase two of the refurbishment has now been completed. The main dining room has been transformed – with an open kitchen where you can see our chef’s hard at work. We have also created a wonderful area for you to come and have a light bite or coffee during the day & a cocktail and wine bar in the evening.”

Watch This Space

Phase three of the refurbishment is currently underway with our newly aquired function room. This will be available to hire and for the Cavaliere to host one of our famous events or party nights! Watch this space for more information.

  • "Always come away feeling we have had great time…"

    We are regular visitors to the “Cavaliere Restaurant” in Dalkeith, mainly for the great authentic Italian food. However, it’s more than that, it has a great family friendly atmosphere, excellent value for money, first class service with really friendly staff. We have been there for many family celebrations, lunch and dinners alike and always come away feeling we have had great time!

    Fiona, George & Kyle McGeechant

    Posted on 6th March 2016

  • "Wonderful food, service and atmosphere :-)"

    Visited this restaurant for the first time with friend and was very impressed.
    The service was spectacular and couldn’t fault it one little bit. All the staff were friendly and attentive.
    The menu had a great selection plus there were a good choice of specials as well as a cheaper set menu if desired.
    The food was exquisite, one of the nicest dishes I have ever tasted (even beats some of the restaurants I visited while in Italy !!).
    Food was plentiful and piping hot, everyone in our party expressed how delightful their dishes were.
    I would definitely recommend and I will most certainly be back.
    Many thanks!


    Posted on 7th November 2015

  • "Amazing!!"

    Excellent food excellent service. 14 of us out for lunch we all had the 3 course Christmas lunch menu which was only £15, great value. We didn’t wait long for food service was amazing as were the waiters.


    Posted on 21st December 2015

  • "Christmas party night"

    Went here for our staff Christmas night out and was fantastic. The food was great and the service was excellent. Would definitely go back. Thanks for a great night guys.

    Sandra B

    Posted on 10th January 2016

  • "Great Food and Great Service"

    I can go back to 1968, when our local chippy changed hands to George and Josephine Crolla, I can still see George and Josephine behind the pans busily serving away, and the sit in cafe was always busy. By 1969 the Cavaliere restaurant was born and for the first time in Dalkeith you could get such delights as pasta, pizza and other delicious Italian dishes, and of course your usual pie, black pudding, white putting and fish supper at the chippy. As time passed and we got married, had children the Cavaliere became our regular place to eat out and a friendship began with the Crolla family that has grown over the last 45 years.

    We have watched the Cavaliere grow from its humble beginnings as a chippy with a sit in to what it is today, a successfully run family restaurant with great food and great service, we are now being looked after by the next generation Toni and Gemma who are brilliant hosts. The staff always remember you on your return and are always attentive and accommodating, for example they always remember what type of Pizza Moira has and the wine we drink what more can you ask for.

    It is an Italian restaurant that has never lost its relaxed family friendly atmosphere.

    Alex & Moira Watson

    Posted on 16th February 2016

  • "The Ambience is Cheerful and Relaxing"

    This is an authentic Italian Restaurant, with the owners and most of the staff in close contact with their homeland.

    Long established, they know their customer base and its changes over the years. The menu, with its popular dishes and generous portions, is backed up by a constantly changing choice of daily specials of excellent quality and a good wine list.

    The staff are welcoming, knowledgeable and helpful, the ambience is cheerful and relaxing.

    We have been regular customers for twenty years and warmly recommend the Cavaliere.

    John & Helen Ballantyne

    Posted on 17th February 2016

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