Our monthly countdown of the most-talked-about, must-visit restaurants in Glasgow. The list below features tasty places ranked according to one important, ever-fluctuating quality: Who has the most buzz?
New openings. Old favourites. Quirky dishes. Emerging food trends. Rising star chefs. Taste sensations. Whatever the reasons, these are the 14 most interesting places to eat in Glasgow right now. Get involved.
#1 The Gannet (Last Month: #11)
A true celebration of Scottish cooking, The Gannet continue to serve some of the best dishes in the city. They have retained their Bib Gourmand status in the latest edition of the Michelin Guide. Look for satisfying dishes involving preparations of Shetland squid, Perthshire deer, Skye scallops and Peterhead landed halibut on their delicious autumn menu.
#2 Ox & Finch (New Entry)
Confirmed as Glasgow’s second Bib Gourmand restaurant in the Michelin Guide for the fourth year in a row. Glorious small plates created with flair and attention to detail. Creative cooking with dishes like braised blade of beef, celeriac, mushrooms, parsley and marrow crumb or mackerel, baked orange puree, fennel and dill.
#3 Bilson Eleven (New Entry)
Hailed by Glasgowist as the city’s most exciting new restaurant earlier in the year, Bilson Eleven has been added to the Michelin Guide, a vote of confidence for chef Nick Rietz and his wife Liz who run this outstanding dining room in Dennistoun. A fine dining destination worthy of your immediate attention. They recently opened a private dining room.
#4 Alchemilla (#2)
The menu rotates but you can rely on dishes being colourful, healthy, packed with fresh flavours and quirky. Look out for anything involving parpadelle as it’s invariably a real treat. Even the simple things can be a delight here. Is it possible to get excited by a tomato salad or a plate of bortolli beans? It is. It really is. Alchemilla is a critic’s favourite and was included in the new edition of the Good Food Guide.
#5 A’Challtainn (Last Month: #3)
A’Challtainn work hard to keep your attention. Not content with serving some of the finest fish dishes in the city, you’ll find a rolling roster of market events, movie screenings, performances, and pop-up dining experiences. They received an enthusiastic review from Glasgowist. Magnificent 7, the new joint keeping A’Challtain company at Barras Art and Design off Bain Street has seven pizzas on sale for £7 each, seven days a week. Another excuse to look east. Look out for their oyster happy hour.
#6 The Drugstore Social (#1)
Studiously fashionable. A poster boy for a new wave of cocktail bars. The Drugstore Social received a huge accolade recently when it was included in Conde Nast Traveller magazine’s countdown of this year’s hottest new bars in the world. It’s not a list that Glasgow often figures on. They were number five, hailed for drink innovation that included unfamiliar botanical ingredients: think sea buckthorn, grapefruit shrub, meadowsweet. Food is also trendy and interesting. Try their new menu including picnic sharing boards, small plates, flat breads and a tasting menu.
#7 Six by Nico (#4)
Chef Nico Simeone continues with his bold concept of introducing a new menu every six weeks. Six by Nico is a success, generating a constant stream of images on Instagram, confirming that this is one of the hottest tables in town. Their next menu, Forest, is a celebration of foraging and nature. It runs from 10th October until 19th November.
#8 Cail Bruich (New Entry)
The menus at Cail Bruich change according to the seasons and autumn brings some dishes with depth and flair. There is a market or à la carte menu to choose from, plus a tasting menu of five or seven courses. Passionate about produce, they bring a modern style to a relaxed, distinctively Glaswegian fine dining experience. In October, they are having A Month of Sundays: four lunches featuring four of the top chefs in Scotland at the moment making guest appearances.
#9 Lebowksis (New Entry)
This hip Finnieston hangout has the best White Russian cocktails in town and a selection of intriguing burgers. A couple of weeks ago they unveiled The Glasgow Oyster, a meaty double beef burger with melted mature cheddar, a scotch pie and beef dripping gravy and we were shook. Such was the interest in this curious, gallus combination, it is now available at their southside location too.
#10 Gamba (New Entry)
Chef Derek Marshall’s simple, honest cooking mantra is the defining principle of the menu here, yet there are regular flourishes that demonstrate commitment to technique and flair. An unexpected Asian influence catches the eye. Gamba is a two AA rosette restaurant, a status it has held for 19 years. Their outstanding fish dishes are their recipe for success.
#11 Pot Luck (#5)
A relatively new arrival on Nithsdale Road, Pot Luck has thrilled Glasgow food bloggers. Small but perfectly formed, this neighbourhood hangout specialises in comfort food that’s both pretty and tasty. They brighten up mornings with towers of fluffy pancakes. Select from a menu that includes ingredients like scrambled eggs, asparagus, hash browns, bacon, black pudding, pistachio, peach and avocado. Join the breakfast club this month.
#12 Paesano Pizza (#7)
The lunchtime queues testify to the popularity of Glasgow’s premier purveyor of pizza. The Miller Street location recently gained a sister restaurant in Paesano Pizza West End on Great Western Road. We order the Italian cooked ham pizza with portobello mushrooms, mozzarella, fresh thyme on a lathering of sweet tomato sauce. Read our full review here.
#13 Kimchi Cult (#9)
Recommended by the New York Times and always a bit of a trend-setter, Kimchi Cult offers punk riffs on Korean classics. Just off Byres Road, they liked steamed bao buns before they were cool. Strong vegan and vegetarian options if that’s your thing. Expect fermented veg, pickles and marinated meat. It’s the time of year when a warming bowl of bibimbap with bulgogi brisket really hits the spot.
#14 Rioja Finnieston (New Entry)
Renowned Michelin-starred chef Modesto Fabregat is returning to Finnieston. Known for showcasing seasonal produce, Modesto will again put his own stamp on the dishes for a gastronomic collaboration with Rioja’s head chef as they curate a dazzling eight-course tasting menu. Last year, Glasgowist enjoyed the first Michelin tasting takeover, you can read what we thought of it here. You’ll enjoy eight exquisite courses, featuring seafood to Highland game and Iberian delicacies, with tables available in the evening, from 5.30pm, from Sunday 22nd October until Wednesday 25th October. Phone Javier on 0141 334 0761 or email email@example.com to book.