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Eight of the best outdoor dining restaurants in Glasgow One of the UK’s most exciting dining scenes, Glasgow has seen its restaurants adapt to outdoor dining during the pandemic. Here we take a look at eight of the best places to eat in the city.
Best Lunch Menu Glasgow
At the Ox and Finch, prices are extremely reasonable for dishes that combine Scottish produce with international flavours, including venison carpaccio with green sriracha, lime and scallions.
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In a city with notorious weather like Glasgow, dining alfresco can seem overwhelming. But while it’s true that many locals are sun-hungry, they’re also spoiled for choice when it comes to outdoor dining. Scotland’s largest city has long had a backbone of excellent Italian and Indian restaurants, but these days its gastronomic scene is something even more cosmopolitan, lively. Glasgow had lacked a Michelin-starred restaurant for 18 years, but that all changed thanks to Calebroach’s newly acquired star, awarded in early 2021. From fine dining to street food, Glasgow’s menus have never been better — just ask for some sunshine.
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(Wine Bar) Lively Merchant City specializes in tapas-style lunches at very reasonable prices in the heart of the district. Outdoor space is limited, although expanded in the Covid era, while the menu still features excellent dishes such as nduja and mascarpone pizzettas and homemade meatballs.
Launched in the summer of 2020 in response to the Covid crisis, Cranside Kitchen was created as a collaborative option for restaurants around Glasgow that did not have their own outdoor space. The issues that plagued its busy debut have now been ironed out, meaning this massive open-air venue in the River Clyde can offer everything from Greek cuisine and Asian fusion to ‘dirty pizza’.
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At Brill, competition for seats can be fierce, especially on sunny days, so book well in advance.
Ashton Lane in the West End is rarely quiet, partly because of its proximity to the University of Glasgow. The famous cobblestone street is lined with exclusive bars and restaurants, and while they all have their strengths, nowhere is more open than the modern Braille. Much of the menu can be classed as modern bar food, meaning there’s a healthy selection of buttermilk fried chicken, as well as vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free options. Competition for places can be fierce, especially on sunny days.
American writer and alcoholic Charles Bukowski was so notorious that you can find bars built in his honor all over the world. Chinasky was the author’s literary alter ego and there are many lines of unflinching prose and numerous photographs of him scattered around this bar and restaurant in Charing Cross. It’s hard to imagine Bukowski enjoying a sunny patio, serving up chickpea fritters and halloumi burgers. Still, he might enjoy the cabbage in his beer, and he’s sure to like the clever cocktail list.
Nowhere in Glasgow, or anywhere else in Scotland, has growth been more rapid than in the neighborhood of Funeston. From scrappy to hip in just over a decade, it’s now home to some of the city’s best restaurants and bars. Most are squeezed into old apartment buildings and former shops, meaning outdoor space is at a premium. The much-loved Ox and Finch is a good example, with just a few tables outside its elegant, often fully booked fine dining restaurant. Prices are extremely reasonable for dishes that combine Scottish produce with international flavours. These include venison carpaccio with green sriracha, lime and scallions.
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In addition to stocking more than 100 rums, The Rum Shack has an outdoor dining area that serves, among other things, saltfish, goat curry and, just to remind you where you are in the world, haggis bon bons.
If Funeston has gone from prospect to prospect, then the south side of Glasgow is an area that is always in danger of following suit. Loved for its large parks, it’s also gaining a reputation for small, imaginative restaurants that offer menus unlike anywhere else in the city. They also have the Rum Shack, which has more than 100 rums, as well as alfresco dining, including salt fish and goat curry. Also, just to remind you where you are in the world, haggis bon bons.
Glasgow has remained unrecognizable in some areas, but Rogano remains one of the city’s true institutions. Built in 1935 in a prime location on Royal Exchange Square, it survived the Second World War bombs that leveled much of the area and has remained largely unchanged since. Still serving fresh oysters and classic seafood, it’s unapologetically stuck in the 1930s with white tablecloths, dapper waiters and Art Deco design. The fact that lobster thermidor never left the menu tells you almost everything you need to know about it.
Celebrating its centenary in 2021, the once mighty Barrowlands Market (known locally as Barras) may not be the institution it once was, but from its ashes has risen the Barras Art and Design Hub (BAaD). Inside you’ll find an oyster bar, event space and a gin school. Outside, the BAaD container yard is buzzing in summer. The newly-branded MO restaurant in the center serves contemporary Scottish cuisine and offers a wide selection of classics as well as hipster beers from around the city.
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Love food and travel? Taste the world at the National Geographic Traveler Food Festival, our culinary event on 17-18 July 2021 at the Business Design Center in London. Find out more and book your tickets.
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It’s very Glasgow classy. A cheap but full restaurant with regularly updated menus to keep you coming back.
The plates are small, the food is classy and globally inspired – jumping from lagoon-cured sea trout to venison kofta with preserved lemon at a glance – and the decor is industrial and chic, all at once cozy and intimate. During the stay.
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If you don’t go anywhere else on the list (and you really should), visit Ox and Finch in the West End.
Located on a quiet side street down Byers Road, we first fell in love with Kimchi Cult back in April 2016 when we couldn’t help but admit in one of our first food reviews that we love some delicious Korean food. Bowing before the Street Food Place.
The fact that we’re still craving their sensational bao buns, spicy burgers and – of course – those ridiculous kimchi fries almost four years later shows that this place has definitely stood the test of time.
Oh, and they also won the Glasgow Live Best Places Best Takeaway award, beating a lot of competition. Respect.
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Regularly at the top of ‘best restaurants’ lists, this long-established venue on Byers Road had to be added to our list.
Anyone who follows Broj 16 on social media knows that the food pictures speak for themselves – from stuffed samaras worthy of lamb’s drumsticks to incredibly inventive desserts, this is a place with beautiful plates. Perfectly balanced to satisfy even a hungry eater.
The set lunch menu is also a bargain and a favorite in Glasgow looking to impress visiting friends or family members. Get your Mao and your dad – they’ll thank you for it (hopefully with payment).
The place is relatively new to the Feniston strip (and on the edge of Kelvingrove Park, it hardly qualifies as part of the trendy quarter) – but ask anyone who’s been and they’ll rave about it.
Lychee Oriental Restaurant, Chinese Fine Dining In Glasgow Centre
With some of the best French-inspired dishes in Glasgow, along with walls lined with incredible bottles of wine, you’ll leave Le Petit Cochon satisfied. Little pig? More like a big pig after three meals of the good stuff.
Mushrooms on truffle brioche is a great dish – order, get comfortable and enjoy the twinkling fairy lights. You are officially in one of the best restaurants in Glasgow.
The Butcher Shop Bar & Grill is without a doubt the safest pair of steak hands in the west end of Glasgow – and they’ve got enough cuts to satisfy quite the appetite.
The meat is fantastic, the deals will keep you in perfectly cooked beef even when you’re skimping (burger vs. steak dinners are especially winners), or Philly if you go a la carte. Cheesesteak Spring Rolls will send you into a delicious food coma.
The 15 Restaurants In Glasgow, Scotland
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