If you’ve walked around Glasgow’s West End, you may remember seeing Bar Gumbo‘s orange sign over a black painted bar at the bottom of Byres Road. If you’ve walked in the area recently, however, you will notice that in place of the old Black facade you can now find a light blue restaurant with a bright Blue sign “Gumbo”. Indeed, the old Glasgow bar, has re-furbished and undergone a massive change inside and outside.
Gumbo has re-launched and now offering steak, seafood and tasty Southern American food. To celebrate their new look and menu, Gumbo had a Re-launch party last Tuesday (13th of Feb) and invited along some of Glasgow’s bloggers, and released a small number of free tickets. My friend Sarah from Foodie vs The World and I, headed along for the Mardi Gras Gumbo party to check out Gumbo’s new look and style.
As we walked in it was almost like walking in a bar in New Orleans. Live Jazz band playing in the corner, a busy bar area full of people, drinks everywhere… From the first minutes the atmosphere just grabbed us and transported us somewhere else entirely. We grabbed one of the free cocktails on offer to start with. There were three Southern Comfort based cocktails (see pic below). We only managed to try two – the Southern Comfort Peach n Lemon Ice Tea and the Heroncane. My personal favourite was the first one and I had a fair few of them during the evening.
There was also a lot of food around. We were seated in the restaurant area, next to the windows, so we were a bit far from all the food. We had to do a bit of ‘food hunting’ to get a few of the dishes and I’m pleased to say we tried quite a few of the options available. First of all, we helped ourselves to an oyster each, shortly followed by the delicious prawn and chicken jambalaya, which came with jumbo prawns still in their shells. The Jambalaya was spicy, just as it should be and overall quite tasty.
Shortly after this, there were lettuce cups with a crab filling and salmon filling being spread around and we managed to try a couple of them. We weren’t as keen on them as, the crab ones especially, were very salty. There were also mini burgers available (though extremely hard to find) and cray fish mac & cheese. We managed to try them both though the mac&cheese we got didn’t have any crayfish, so it wasn’t until later that I discovered it was a craysfish mac&cheese. Both the burger and the mac & cheese were very tasty too.
Finally, a note on the fantastic entertainment team Gumbo had put together. Live Jazz was being played almost the whole evening, only being interrupted by some excellent samba dancers halfway through the evening. The Samba brought some fantastic energy into the bar and the dancers were fantastic! After the show, we were treated to more jazz from the excellent band playing that evening. I was also very impressed with the staff that evening, who were completely swamped making cocktails and serving the big crowd but handled everything expertly and gracefully.
I always reserve judgement and recommendations based on a free event or a launch night like this one, however, based on the food, drinks and atmosphere we experienced that evening I would be keen to go back to Bar Gumbo for a proper experience of their menu and offering.
Thanks for having us Team Gumbo!
Bar Gumbo info and reservations: http://www.bargumbo.com/
Address: 71-77 Byres Road, Glasgow, G11 5HN
Tel: 0141 342 5726