Tag Archives: Restaurants

Left Bank – pleasing even the most pernickety of appetites

What to do with fussy, pernickety guests?  Guests with pre-conceived ideas about my city.  Guests whose mother tell them to be ‘very, very careful’ when venturing out in treacherous Glasgow.   Guests from Edinburgh*. 

left bank menu, GlasgowI opt for Left Bank  in the West End – edgy enough without being uncomfortable, and cool without being pretentious. 

And of course there’s the menu.  This is the kind of place where food is not only eclectic, but excellent – you will love whatever you get.  Inevitably you will also find yourself looking longingly at other people’s food, and rightly so.  Everything is really that good.  You can’t go wrong.

 Welcoming, attentive staff 

Left Bank Burger and Chips, GlasgowThe left bank burger with handmade chips (7.95) or fish seafood curry (11.95) and baked chocolate pecan and raspberry brownie (4.95) are all heavenly.  And the wide selection of beer and cocktails top everything off nicely.  

Sharing the same name as the area in the southern bank of the Seine in Paris, Left Bank has all the whimsy without the attitude.  And unlike Paris, your waiter or waitress doesn’t actually mind you being there and will come back to ask if everything’s ok and whether you need anything else… like say another drink!

 Charming waiter to the rescue 

But of course even in an ideal setting with lush food, Pernickety finds something.  Having finished the most wonderful meal, and dusted off a few desserts and drinks in the process, it’s time to move onto coffee.   And here it comes – the death of a perfect evening.  The decaf’s (gasp) instant!   Apparently detectable by the scent alone.  

I cringe as Pernickety complains to our waiter about the coffee – but there’s no uncomfortable stand off.  There’s only laughter; our charming waiter instantly restores harmony to our table with his honest and rather funny admission  ‘I know, we ran out of decaf so it’s instant and it’s crap, right.  Not to worry, I’ll get you something else.’  And voila, everything is perfect again. 

Left Bank – where the atmosphere and food are always extraordinary and the service is with a sly smile.   Well worth checking out!  In fact I’m already thinking of when I can get back to have what the guy at the table next to me was eating.

* Don’t get me wrong – I love Edinburghers, these pernickety ones in particular, – but all Capital dwellers should venture to good old Glasgow for a bit of fun.  In fact, like my friends, they’ll find they don’t need those stab proof vests, they’ll eat well and have a damn good time.

-T

Say aloha to Glasgow’s own slice of Hawaiian Kitsch with a Thai twist

The days are getting shorter and the weather has taken a turn for the even worse – but there’s still reason to feel alright if you’re heading to the Tiki Bar in Glasgow.

Tiki Bar Sign in GlasgowThis wee tropical hide-a-way at the end of Bath Street  is easy to miss – if not for the giant Easter Island head (Moai) guarding the outside entry.  And even then, if there’s no one  outside because the weather is the pits (which is quite possible), you could easily pass by the luminous green door.  But do open it to the most wonderful basement bar, turning out tasty Thai treats in extraordinary surroundings.

Dinner with friends – of the interesting variety

The décor is Americano meets island boy and has pin-up-girl daughter extrovert.   Buxom 1940s poster girls are interspersed with glowing blowfish lamps and the ultimate in geek chic, Mad Magazine’s toothy freckled-face boy.   The downstairs bar is a softly lit snug, comfy place.  And upstairs the open-space restaurant is like stepping into a friend’s house – if that friend happened to live in the 1940’s, loved to collect robots and interesting art and had a knack for making killer Thai food.

Clever kitchness, super staff and tasty cocktails

Tiki bar skull cup gin and juice drink

Cocktails with a twist

Adding to the wonder of this quirky place is their fantastic staff and dare I say even more divine cocktails .  And fellas, before you turn up your noses to girlie drinks, you haven’t had a Tiki Bar cocktail.  Not only are they delicious and packing a potent punch, but they are served in the ultimate glasses – my gin and juice came in a ceramic skull.  How’s that for manly.  Of course for the less daring, there’s always beer.

And then there’s the food  – absolute yum!  Top dinner recommendations would be starting with the king prawn tempura (£6.00), which should be renamed ultimate champion king of kings prawns, the crispy golden spring rolls (£4.80) or the oh-so-good Fish Cakes (£6.00).  And for a main you can’t go wrong with the divinely delicious tofu and vegetable red curry or the flavourful coley with three flavoured sauce fish dish (£10.20).  If after that you can muster a dessert (well done), do let me know what’s best!  I opted for more cocktails.

Shake off autumn cold at one of the hottest basement bars in town

So if you’re looking to escape looming autumn blues and shake off cold and constant rain, then get yourself to the Tiki Bar!   Cocktails reign supreme, are served in attention-grabbing glasses and the food is rock-your-socks off good but won’t force you to wonder home barefoot and broke!

And while, yes, technically their Thai cuisine may not be authenticly Hawaiian – there’s no denying that it is 100% fantastic!

 Although I’m totally getting ahead of myself – I’m hoping that summer 2012 will be a scorcher because incidentally the Tiki Bar also has one of the best outdoor areas in Glasgow and will give places on Ashton Lane and  the city centre’s Chinaskis a run for their money!

-T