Restaurant at Blythswood Square
- Telephone 0141 248 8888
- Bar open Mon–Sat noon–midnight; Sun 12.30pm–midnight
- Food served Mon–Fri 7–10am, noon–2.30pm, 5–9.45pm; Sat 7–11am, 12.30–2.30pm, 5–9.45pm; Sun 7–11am, 12.30–3pm, 5–10pm
- Pre-theatre times Saturday 5–6.30pm
- Pre-theatre price £22
- Website www.blythswoodsquare.com
Fine dining in the elegant surroundings of a five-star hotel in Glasgow's city centre.
There are few restaurants in Glasgow that inhabit more impressive premises than the Blythswood – one of the city’s plushest hotels, housed in the old RAC club overlooking Blythswood Square. The marble-floored lobby has a wow factor that’ll make you feel underdressed unless you’re wearing your best. The restaurant is less formal than immediate impressions suggest, however, and actually really very affordable if you order from their daily changing seasonal market menu, offering effectively pre-theatre prices all day (except for a Saturday evening). Although there is the occasional mystifying surcharge – £5 extra on the prawn cocktail one assumes goes towards the cost of the time machine to retrieve the dish from the 1970s. By and large they play it hotel restaurant safe, with steaks cooked on a charcoal Josper grill, classic mains of chicken or beef served with all the typical trimmings, or spinach and ricotta tortellini served in a parmesan cream laced with nuggets of courgette. You can’t go wrong with a crème-fraîche cheesecake or salted caramel panacotta, but then neither could you go wrong at the Blythswood’s highly regarded cocktail bar and making it a liquid dessert.
The beginning of 2015 saw a change of hotel management for Blythswood Square after The Townhouse Company sold their 5-star Glasgow outfit to American-owned Starwood Hotels, who count names such as St Regis, Sheraton and Le Méridien under their umbrella. So far, it is business as usual, no changes are planned to their menu, which includes an array of fish, meat, game and steaks, the latter cooked over charcoal on a renowned Josper grill. Wine will see the biggest shakeup, with a revamp of the current list by the end of the year. Presently house wine starts from nearly £23, a pretty hefty markup. In contrast, the market menu offers great value and is always available alongside the main menu. With only three options for each course, choice is limited to a single meat, fish and vegetable option for both starter and main. Begin with pork terrine – meaty cubes dot the delicate plate while a crisp, slightly sweet pulled pork bonbon sits above bold celeriac remoulade, a kick of horseradish livens things up. Chicken is pretty standard, though well cooked, served with green beans, pan-fried potatoes and a rich poultry gravy. To finish, enjoy an aperitif in the plush cocktail lounge where one of their experienced mixologists will shake up anything your heart desires.
- Private dining: Up to 20 covers
- No. overnight rooms: 115
- Provides: Children's portions, Children's high chairs, Wheelchair access, Pre-theatre menu, Free wi-fi
- Music on stereo: Pop
- Capacity: 120
- Largest group: 35
- Open since: 2009
- Number of wines sold by the glass: 15
- House wine: £22.95 per bottle
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