My Month in Food – August

As September is starting, here is a summary of my Glasgow food highlights from August. In this post you can read about Glasgow’s new healthy lunch hot spot sprigg; a South side newcomer, Short Long Black; retro gaming bar Super Bario; as well as the pop up Bun Life in Strata and the very popular seafood restaurant, The Crabshakk in Finnieston.

Starting with the new…

Sprigg – City Centre – Breakfast & Lunch

££: Inexpensive (Coffee/Tea £2; Breakfast up to £3; Lunch up to £6). 
Good for: coffee, breakfast, lunch, healthy food.

You can find sprigg on Ingram street, occupying a compact space near the Gallery of Modern Art. They have a fantastic breakfast and lunch bar with a lot of healthy options to suit everyone’s food preference, including vegan/vegetarian diets. The breakfast bar includes a good number of toppings: a wide variety of fruit, granola, yogurts, fruit juices, seeds and more, which you can use to create your breakfast pot (£2) or bowl (£3). Lunch options are made and changed daily, but often you will see roast chicken (the honey and chipotle chicken is delicious), tuna, falafels, and an impressive number of other salad ingredients that you can use to make your own salad.

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Breakfast bowl with Greek yogurt, granola, rose poached peaches and chia seeds.

The portion sizes are very good value for money too – around £5-£6 for most lunch options. If salad isn’t your thing, sprigg also offers (sweet) baked potatoes, soups and the Freedom Bakery bread and pastries. Finally, they serve delicious The Good Coffee Cartel too which is definite bonus points! Sprigg is also fully cashless (more bonus points). All in all, sprigg only opened just over a month ago and I’m already very much in love with their food, drinks and what they are doing. They are staff are superb too, super friendly and always offer good banter. Definite recommendation when you are looking for breakfast/lunch on the go in the city centre.

Short Long Black – South side – Coffee, brunch

££: Inexpensive
Good for: Coffee, brunch, lunch.

Okay, I guess they are not that new having opened back in April, but Short Long Black are one of these hidden gems in a city where good brunching is becoming quite popular. Short Long Black have brought something different and new to the scene, which is currently crowded with hotcakes and pancake stacks (still delicious though), and change it up a little bit with a very small and focused menu, in which you will find interesting plays on the Waffle. Savoury and sweet options available, however, I have to say that the savoury waffle is one of the best thing I’ve eaten. I went for the Green Waffles, stuffed with halloumi (or you can chose bacon), while my friend opted for the courgette fritters (which also came in a waffle like shape). Both dishes were truly delicious and their coffee was as smooth as they come. This little cafe on Victoria road is definitely one to watch and it will be one I’ll be returning to hopefully frequently!

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Halloumi stuffed waffles, with green eggs

Super Bario – Merchant City – Bar, Arcade

££: Standard
Good for: Drinks, going out, games, entertainment – great for hanging out with friends!  

Super Bario is a small pub located in Merchant City which delivers big on character, fun and atmosphere. I visited on a Friday night, around 10pm, and the pub was very busy with lots of buzz around coming from tables and arcade games all around. This is a superb spot for those of us who enjoy a bit of gaming, especially retro arcade games, and a good range of drinks.

Bun Life – City Centre – Asian food/street food / pop up

££: Moderate for the portion size (2 baos per portion for £7)
Good for: sharing, quick lunch, baos 

Bun Life is a pop up residing over at Strata, incidentally, one of my least favourite restaurants in Glasgow. However, Bun Life was definitely worth another visit to the city centre based restaurant! The menu is fairly small, a choice of five or so steamed bao buns with a good selection of toppings – panko haddock, massaman beef, chicken katsu, chilli and garlic tofu and more. They also offer a small selection of sides – kimchi sweet potato fries (yum!), chicken wings, katsu fries – to name a few. Finally, if you are into your desserts, you will be delighted to know they have on offer a couple of dessert baos as well. Marshmallows in a bao? Why not! We tried the panko haddock and chicken katsu baos, accompanied by sweet potato fries and they were indeed delicious. There were flavours bursting in every bao and I really enjoyed the good selection of fillings – it was hard to choose!

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Panko haddock bao buns with kimchi sweet potato fries

The Crabshakk – Finnieston – Sea Food Restaurant

££: Moderately expensive (We paid around £40 pp, incl drinks)
Good for: seafood, fine dining

The Crabshakk already has a fantastic reputation around Glasgow. If you like seafood you will love the Crabshakk. It’s a tiny restaurant on the Argyle Street Finnieston Strip. They specialise in seafood (as the name might suggest) and with Scotland’s fantastic seafood offering they offer really good quality food and ingredients. They have a daily menu and a standard menu to chose from and fantastic variety of various local/seasonal fish and seafood. To start with, we had oysters served with shallots in vinegar and Tabasco sauce. They were probably the best oysters I’ve eaten in Scotland. We also ordered some of the starters of the day – pickled herring, salmon sashimi and tried the home cured gravadlax. The latter of those was my favourite – the salmon was delicious and the portion size was just right, compared to the sashimi which was a fairly modest serving. For main, I had the Lobster with garlic butter and chips, while my friends had a Whole brown crab and a very decent portion of Mussels Mariniere. Everything was really fresh and full of flavour. The Crabshakk is definitely worth a visit when you are after some delicious seafood.

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Half lobster with garlic butter

Look out for the September edition of “My Month In Food” at the end of the month/beginning of October!.

~Em

My Month In Food – July (Part 2)

Hello and welcome to my second post for July. Last month was all about trying new places popping up in Glasgow and revisiting some of my old favourites that I haven’t yet written about. This post is a bit of a mixed bag of good and not so good… I always love writing about the places that have made an impression on me and I have loved (part of the reason I opened this blog), but I have to remind myself that another reason why I blog is to also share news, impressions and thoughts on all the food I eat – good or bad. So while I don’t enjoy when I have to write a poor ‘review’ it’s part of the reason why I created this whole thing. And, unfortunately, we have a couple of those today…

In Part 2 there is a whole lot more beer featured to my usual food rantings, and you can read about notable beer places Grunting Growler and Six°North. I also popped in to brand new Glasgow restaurant Absurd Bird. And finally, we have two West End spots that have been with us for a while: Kelbourne Saint and Cafe Zique. I’ll start with the good.

Grunting Growler – Finnieston – Craft Beer Shop/Bar

No food to be found in this section, however, very much worth a mention for beer lovers. I’m not particularly crazy about beer and don’t know a thing about craft beers, but I do enjoy drinking them occasionally! I’ve been meaning to stop in this very hipster looking little place for a while and finally did so last month. They offer a really large selection of beers on tap and their fridges are well stocked with a variety of craft beers from around the world. I very much enjoyed giving a few beers a try and also ended up bringing a fair few cans back home. It’s the Grunting Growler where I discovered that I do have a favourite type of beer and that’s a sour. To add to this, the staff are so nice, very helpful and good at offering advice about beer. I’d definitely recommending stopping by this little shop/bar!

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Delicious Cloudwater sour over at Grunting Growler.
  • Good for: Craft beer;
  • ££: Prices of various beers will range, it’s moderately expensive.

Six°North – Partick – Beer & Modern pub food

Six°North is situated in the cusp of Partick and it was very much recommended by friends of mine. We headed there for an impromptu dinner one night and I was very pleasantly surprised by this bar. Offering a modern atmosphere, pleasant ambiance, plenty of beer choice and an extensive food menu – it’s actually a really good spot. While my friends had the fish and chips and cheese croquettes, I opted for the baked Camembert and a side portion of chorizo. The chorizo is really made for sharing and was a bit much for me just on it’s own – quite heavy and salty (as it should be, just not in such quantities for one!). However… the baked Camembert was divine. It was  topped with garlic and parsley and served with crusty bread. I would have preferred a different style bread with the dish, but I can’t fault the baked Camembert itself! I’ll definitely be back to try more of their menu, but so far, I can say it’s definitely worth a visit!

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Baked Camembert at Six°North
  • Good for: Beer & pub food, bigger crowds, casual dining.
  • ££: Starters range from £5-7, Mains – £6-£13.

Cafe Zique – Partick – Brunch & Coffee

I’ve been a fan of Cafe Zique ever since my partner’s sister suggested it for brunch a few years back. I’ve come back plenty of times with family and friends, mostly for brunch, and occasionally for dinner. It’s a popular west end spot and the restaurant is always buzzing when I visit. The food is good and plentiful and the coffee – delicious. They also change and experiment with their menu regularly enough and therefore keep things interesting for regulars. You can find a very decent full breakfast, plenty of choice for poached eggs and various toppings and french toast. I’m usually a big fan of this buzzing restaurant, but my last visit was a bit disappointing. I met a friend for brunch there and while he devoured a delicious looking full breakfast, I had the french toast with berries. Plenty of french toast, with the smallest handful of berries I’ve been served… Maple syrup had to be ordered as an extra too (at the ‘modest’ price of £2!) which also left me with a bitter (ah the irony) taste at the end. Saying that, Cafe Zique have an impressive track record of cooking and serving delicious food, so at the moment I’m considering this to be a fluke!  And, as a side note, their bakery is amazing – you can get fresh bread, pastries and cakes and they are truly delicious!

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Plenty of french toast, sadly not much from any of the toppings at Cafe Zique
  • Good for: Brunch, lunch, dinner, coffee, cocktails and a fantastic in store bakery.
  • ££: Moderately priced.

Kelbourne Saint – West End – Gourmet Pub

This is my local pub and I’ve seen it change a few times since I moved in the area. It’s famous for being the pub which appears in a certain pint smashing scene in Trainspotting and I’ve also spotted in British sitcom Lovesick. Though it’s changed much since it’s appearance on Trainspotting, it still reserves a certain charm when you visit. It’s now a posh pub, serving gourmet food and rotisserie chicken. Ever since it re-opened under the new management and new name, new look, new everything, I really wanted to like it. And I do like it – I like the atmosphere, I like the outdoor garden, I like the people who work there and I like the drinks. But.. when it comes to the food, it’s an entirely different story.

You’d hope that if a place specialises in something, in this case rotisserie chicken, they would do it well so you might forgive other things on the menu. However, their chicken is really quite average and not all that tasty. The sides, even worse – over roasted dry potatoes, overcooked greens and other veg… overall quite unsatisfying. Over the last year or so, we’ve tried different items on the menu and nothing has ever been quite right. On our last visit in particular, our friends had the burgers which they didn’t enjoy either, and every option my partner and I had initially selected from the menu was actually unavailable – so we had to give the chicken another go, knowing it’s not that great. However, I still visit the Kelbourne Saint, and I will continue to do so, because though the food is no good, the bar is lovely and it’s a nice spot to hang out in!

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Roast chicken with all the trimmings at Kelbourne Saint
  • Good for: drinks and ambiance, but I don’t recommend the food.
  • ££: On the expensive side for a pub.

Absurd Bird – City Centre – All things chicken

Absurd Bird is a chain restaurant which specialises in everything chicken – wings, fried chicken, burgers etc. They have a cool vibe, moonshine cocktails and love to make dirty jokes about chickens. They LOOK really good. So a couple of weeks we headed over for some finger lickin’ good chicken. The menu is really extensive and there is lot’s of choice. I enjoyed the cocktails too, but that’s about as far as I enjoyed this visit. The wings were very mediocre, and the hottest ones on the menu were not hot at all. We also ordered the chicken fondue, which looked impressive but tasted pretty bad. The cheese sauce was not good, however the various additions to the fondue were interesting – notable was the chicken slider and the deep fried baby bell. However, a lot of the dish didn’t make much sense to me – the cheese crumbs didn’t really add anything and the fondue was actually quite difficult to eat, having been served in a rather deep jar. Everything about Absurd Bird, including the chicken fondue, says “style over substance” and it feels that everything is created to be ‘instragramable’ rather than tasty. I’ll take my food in a non-pretty serving but delicious in taste, thank you very much. Overall, not great first impression and not sure it will warrant a second visit.

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Absurd Bird’s very insta-friendly Chicken Fondue, which sadly doesn’t deliver on flavour.
  • Good for: They specialise in chicken and moonshine cocktails, but I wouldn’t say the food is good.
  • ££: Moderately priced.

This is it for July! If you missed part 1, you can go back and read it here. Look out for the August edition in a few weeks time.

My Month of Food – June

We’ve reached the middle of June already. Not quite sure how that happened so quickly, but here we are. This means it’s time for me to summarises all the new places I’ve been visiting. Somehow, this post is very west end heavy and covers a bit of Finnieston, Byres road and Kelvinbridge area. I’m very excited about this post because it also features one of the best restaurants I’ve been to in Glasgow in general, the highly praised Alchemilla. I’m really pleased to finally be sharing my thoughts on it with you! You’ll also notice that I’ve featured Crossing the Rubicon again as they have a new menu so I thought it’s time to update my previously unfavourable review.

Silla Korean – Finnieston – Korean Food/Dinner

I have been eyeing up Silla every time I’ve walked past, and since I quite enjoy good Korean food it’s been on my list to try. Their menu has a number of well known Korean dishes, such as a variety of Korean pancakes , Bibimbap, a smaller selection than expected of Korean Fried Chicken (but they had it on the special the day we were there so it might be available more often than I think) and various noodle, rice, meat and hot pot dishes. I opted for the Korean Fried Chicken, special on the day, spring onion Korean pancakes, while my friends had the Kimchi Jigae (spicy Korean hot pot), a kimchi pancake and a few other small dishes to share.

Overall we were quite pleased with the food at Silla. The portions were plentiful, the pancakes very tasty and my Korean Fried Chicken was crunchy and the Kimchi Jigae was spic and sour. The restaurant itself is casual, with a selection of Korean drinks (as well as your standard beer and wine).

  • ££: About £20 pp, drinks included. Not too bad and similar in price to other Korean restaurants in Glasgow.
  • Good for Korean food, casual dining, ok for groups (but I suspect you should book in advance as the space is small).

Crossing the Rubicon (update: new menu) – Kelvinbridge – Pizza & Craft Beer/Dinner

If you’ve been following my blog for a while, you will know that I’m not Crossing the Rubicon’s biggest fan (often disagreeing with other bloggers on this). I’ve had some pretty unimpressive food there and some pretty bad experiences (mind the time they served food containing gluten to my Coeliac friend and handled the complaint quite poorly…). So if it wasn’t for their spectacular Sunday night quiz I’m not sure I would have gone back after the last visit a few months back.

However, I’m pleased that we did go back as their new menu is a MASSIVE improvement to the Indian they were serving before. I’m still not sure how I feel about their Italian-Germanic fusion and German-inspired pizza toppings, however, the pizza I did try (spicy nduja) was actually pretty good. They also have a good selection of sauces (the beer sauce and the garlic mayo are great) and side dishes. The side dishes are probably the weakest point of the menu. They are all priced at £3 (which is okay) but are somewhat random. For example, who needs a bowl of chillies which is the same amount as a salad?! They could improve their side options by offering the larger sides (pickle salad, arancini etc) for £3 and having smaller portions for things like the chillies and olives for example. Overall, pleased to see the restaurant improving!

The pizzas are fluffy, with plenty of toppings and quite tasty. We have been back for more since that visit and tried a couple different ones. Still think this is my favourite one but my curiosity about their German-Italian fusion has now increased…

  • ££: Inexpensive, pizzas start from under £3 and it’s very decent;
  • Good for: pizza, craft beer and casual dining. Check out their Sunday night quiz by Sir James.
  • Avoid if: You are Gluten-free (Adding this there because they don’t have GF options and are not well informed/haven’t been well informed in the past).

Alchemilla – Finnieston – Dinner

This restaurant was so good it deserved a full review in its own right. You can read the full review here. To summarise – it’s simple food, cooked deliciously, using only the ingredients it needs. No need to over complicate when you have chefs that understand their ingredients so well. The restaurant serves Mediterranean inspired food, with seasonal ingredients, which can be washed down with tasty cocktails or natural wine. This has made it to the top of my favourite places to eat in Glasgow.

  • ££: Moderately pricey but well worth it. Our bill came to about £30 pp with 5 dishes to share and a drink each.
  • Good for: special occasions or when you simply want to celebrate fantastic food. Must try!

Kember and Jones – Byres Rd (West End) – Breakfast + Coffee & Cake

Finally, we have what I consider to be a West End Institution, having been opened for about 14 years. This is one of the first places I got to know with my mother and sister when we moved to Glasgow about 11 years ago and it holds a special place in our ‘history’. It’s still somewhat of a tradition that if the three of us are in Glasgow we will head there for waffles and coffee.

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I had two visits to Kember & Jones in the past week, one with a friend for coffee and cake (yes, waffles count as cake…) and one for a very late breakfast with my mother (perhaps it was lunch…). Over the years we’ve seen K&J change and expand both in size (though unfortunately, part of their shop has gone now to make room for more tables) and in food options. I feel that the change is for the better and am pleased to see more on their menu. Their deli counter is always delightful in its own right with many options of fresh bread available for purchase. As for their cake offering, you can expect very large slices of cake to go with your tea or coffee.

  • ££: Breakfast around £7 pp, reasonably priced.
  • Good for: coffee, cake, brunch, lunch.

2nd half of June coming up soon. Look out for it in early July.

Alchemilla

In the Finneston corner of Argyle street, snug in between notable restaurants like Six by Nico, The Crabshack and the Gannet, you will find the bright, colourful and modern Alchemilla. Opened only a year and half ago, Alchemilla has certainly established itself as one of the places to visit when in Glasgow. Loved by critics and diners alike, it’s also already mentioned in the Michelin guide.

In it’s heart is chef Rosie Healey who trained with a new favourite chef of mine (and old favourite of many in the food industry and food lovers alike) Yotam Ottolenghi. Needles to say, that Chef Healey absolutely does him justice with her fantastic food offering at Alchemilla.

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Asparagus, pumpkin seed cream, brown butter.

The food in Alchemilla is served in “small dishes” and it’s created to be shared. This is perfect as you and friends can order a fantastic variety of dishes to try. Most plates are priced at around £6 – £15 (the latter for meat/fish options) and are usually served beautifully and simple. In Alchemilla you’ll find a fantastic variety of fresh, seasonal vegetables and produce, as well as delicious seafood and meat options. Most dishes are cooked with a few ingredients, playing around with the flavours and highlighting the best of each main ingredient. Alchemilla shows us that there is no need to over complicate food, and that simple can be absolutely delicious.

A friend and I shared five dishes during our visit which was just spot on in terms of the amount of food we had. Saying that, though, it was incredibly hard to narrow down to just two dishes as everything on their daily-changed menu sounded absolutely delicious. I think I could have happily ordered everything on it. The menu is split into four parts: vegetables, fish & seafood, meat and desserts. We narrowed our choices down to two vegetable offerings, two fish and one meat.

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Globe artichoke with vinaigrette cream

The vegetables were two that I don’t particularly favour that much – the asparagus served with a sort of a pumpkin seed cream and brown butter, and a globe artichoke with an emulsified vinaigrette sauce. Both were incredibly delicious, though they are not vegetables I would usually eat. I was really glad to try them in Alchemilla because they were just stunningly prepared. I really enjoyed pulling out the arichoke’s leaves and smothering them in the creamy vinegraite and the crisp and tender texture of the asparagus.

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Smoked haddock and roast red pepper carpaccio

To go with them, we also ordered two fish and one meat dish. We went for one of the specials on the board: pickled herring with pickled potatoes, carrots, onion and dill and a smoked haddock carpaccio with roast red peppers. As for the meat, we had the ongled steak with spinach and pickled clams. It is hard to describe just how well everything worked in each particular dish. The freshenss of the pickled vegetables against the salty pickled herring created both a beatuful taste and texture with every bite. The smoked haddock carpaccio was one of my favourite dishes of the night. I have never thought about pairing sweet roast red pepprs with a lightly smoked fish but it worked so well, flavours just bouncing off of each other. Finally the onglet steak, which was tender and soft paired with acidic clams. It was certainly an interesting flavour combination, not one you’d come cross very often.

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Pickled herring, potatoes, carrots and dill.

This is preicsely what I loved about everything we ate in Alchemilla. The beautiful and sometimes unusual pairings of flavour combinations, served in a simple and relaxed dish. Allowing you to just appreciate the textures, flavours and ingredients dacing on your pallete. I cannot wait to go back to try and keeping trying all of what Alchemilla has to offer.

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Onglet steak, spinach and pickled clams (not pictured here as I had them seperately)

On a sepearte note, I really hope Rosie Healey releases a cookbook because I want to cook her food every. day.


Alchemilla is located on 1126 Argyle Street, Glasgow. You can find them on instagram: @thisisalchemilla. Our bill came to around £60, drinks included.

My Month in Food – May (Part 1)

So the past few months have been exciting. Singl-end have opened their second Glasgow restaurant and you can now find their delicious cakes and plentiful brunches in Merchant City as well. In addition to that, El Perro Negro, have moved from being a pop up to having their own place in Finnieston. Obviously, I couldn’t wait to finally go in and have their fantastic burgers again…

As for the other two on the list, well, I’ve been making a point of visiting all the amazing cafes and brunch spots in the south side and being healthy by cycling to them (calories don’t count that way, right?). So I beat the crowds, and headed down to the uber popular Cafe Strange Brew on a Tuesday. Finally, we have Brel for some cheesy goodness.

Singl-end Merchant City – Brunch – Merchant City

Freshly opened just a couple of months ago, the new Singl-end is already popular with the Glasgow crowds. They have a really good breakfast and lunch menu, with a lot of options ranging from baked eggs, to toast, sandwiches, salads… They also bake their own bread (delicious!) and have vegan options too. Finally, they have a tasty selection of fresh bakes and cakes, and serve alcohol, so if you are like me and enjoy a boozy brunch then you will be in the right spot. It’s quite big inside, much like Singl-end Garneth Hill, however it’s also usually full so you might be safer with a reservation (though we managed to grab a table without one). On a sunny day you can also sit outside and soak up all the sun Glasgow can offer.

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Meaty Baked Eggs with Mozzarella at Singl-End

A friend and I went there for a late brunch/early lunch a few weekends ago. I ordered a portion of the baked meaty eggs with mozzarella and my friend went for one of the daily salads. The eggs were delicious and I struggled to finish a full portion – there was a lot to get through! My friend also enjoyed her salad of the day. You can find a fresh seasonal salad and sandwich options in both restaurants. Overall, it’s definitely a fantastic addition to the restaurant scene in the city centre and I will be back soon!

  • ££: Dishes around £6 – £10. Well priced and the portions are HUGE!
  • Good for: Breakfast, brunch, lunch, coffee & cake. Also quite big so perfect for big crowds too (though you probably want to book first).

Cafe Strange Brew – Brunch – Strathbungo

Cafe Strange Brew is one of these places which has taken Instagram by storm. Their stacked pancakes are very popular and look delicious. It’s such a popular brunch spots that some weekends people might wake for an hour for a table. Now, I’m one of these people who regardless of how much I want a solid brunch, I won’t wait more than 20ish minutes for a table, so I headed to the popular spot on a midweek day off and got a table instantly. Always a win!

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Chorizo and Potato Hash at Cafe Strange Brew

I went for a slightly different option and had the chorizo hash while my friends also had other savoury options. We were all very satisfied with our food though I felt that my hash was 90% potato and only 10% chorizo (slightly disappointing). Regardless, it was really tasty and I woofed it down with two nice cups of coffee. It does indeed live up to it’s reputation and I will be back to try those delicious looking pancake stacks…

  • ££: About £10 for a breakfast dish and coffee. Well priced.
  • Good for: Breakfast, brunch, lunch. Also, look out for pop up events held there!

El Perro Negro – Burgers – Finnieston

I first tried El Perro Negro back in 2017 when they were doing a pop up in the Hippo Taproom, which sadly has closed since. They are often associated with praise like “best burger” so I had to see for myself. Since then, they have now opened a little burger joint in Finnieston and are doing their finest burgers, along some tasty wings and sides, every day. I was very excited for their opening, even though I often say that Glasgow’s burger scene is overcrowded. However, I also think there is always space for restaurants who care about a decent burger and using the best quality beef. You can absolutely taste the difference.

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The NYC Burger at El Perro Negro

This is the case with El Perro Negro. The restaurant itself is small, with limited seating space, yet cosy. They also offer takeaway, and have a nice deal going with The Brass Monkey – you can buy your burger and sit in in the close by pub for a few drinks too – so there, the limited seating space ‘issue’ sorted. As for the burgers, I had the NYC while my other half went for the Top Dog. They were both juicy, with a good amount of delicious toppings, but the meat was the star of the show. The patty had so much flavour and was probably the best burger patty I’ve had. El Perro Negro state that they use beef from small local farms and you can definitely taste the quality of it. We also had a portion of Korean Gochujang Wings to share which were also very juice, hot and delicious. I would definitely encourage everyone to go give them a try!

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Top Dog Burger (left), NYC burger and Gochujang Chicken Wings at El Perro Negro.
  • ££: Burgers from £7 – £10.50, sides from £3. Not the cheapest burgers in town, but definitely worth it for the quality you get.
  • Good for: when you want a really tasty burger! Great for a quick, tasty meal. Also close to The Hydro and SEC so perfect for a pre-gig burger and drinks (if you take your burger to The Brass Monkey).

Brel – Dinner – West End

Brel is here to make all your cheese dreams come true, as they have, I believe the only, Fondue and Raclette on offer in the West End. That’s what we went for,  but beyond that they are also often praised for their Frites (chose from Moules, Langostine, Steak…) and quite an extensive menu beyond that. They also offer a good selection of drinks, cocktails… and now that summer is here… Pimm’s on tap!

We went there to try the Raclette which I’ve never had before. We had a choice of 8 different ‘toppings’ and we chose the venison sausage (delicious!), chorizo, broccoli and parma ham, along with plenty of bread. The Raclette itself is kind of like a small grill (see picture) on which you melt chunky slices of Gruyere cheese which you can then spread over your choice meats and veg. This is what the dreams of cheese lovers like me are made of. I’d definitely recommend trying this when you are in Brel next, though I still prefer a Fondue myself.

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Our Raclette all ready to go at Brel

Couple of important things to note. Brel have a Fondue and Raclette night on a Tuesday where you can get a fantastic deal on both (£15 for 2 people for a Fondue and slightly more for the Raclette). They also offer Gluten-Free options too which is fantastic news for some of my friends!

  • ££: If you go on a Tuesday it’s an absolute bargain for the Fondue/Raclette sets. Otherwise the restaurant is medium priced so a meal with drinks would be around £20 pp.
  • Good for: dinner, big groups, cheese nights, drinks – they also have a lovely garden outside for when the sun is out!

I’ll be posting Part 2 towards the end of next week, where you can read about my visits to one of my favourite cafes, Kelvin Pocket, trying new menu options at Smashburger, attending the Scottish Street Food Festival and also a return visit to Babs.

~Em