Like Edinburgh, the dining scene in Glasgow is diverse and there are some outstanding places to dine out. The recession of 2008/9 hit the industry rather hard, but the choice of restaurants remains good, from the Merchant City district right across to the West End. Although the city cannot boast about any Michelin stars (in contrast to Edinburgh), this also means that Glasgow's best is less costly, while the city has an eclectic mix of seriously stylish dining rooms, budget-minded bistros, and ethnic eateries.
Today some of the best fresh Scottish produce is served in Glasgow, whether it is shellfish and seafood from the nearby West Coast sea lochs, Ayrshire meat such as pork and lamb, or Aberdeen Angus steaks. There is an ever-increasing number of ethnic restaurants. The immigrant groups who have traditionally most influenced cuisine in the city are Italians and South Asians (especially Punjabis). There is a good choice of Far East, Chinese, and Spanish-influenced restaurants, too.
The hours listed here are when food is served. Bars on the premises may stay open longer.
For more ideas on dining options, buy The List magazine's annual Eating & Drinking Guide, a fantastically comprehensive review of hundreds of eateries in Glasgow (and Edinburgh). You can also visit the magazine's website: www.list.co.uk.
Prices -- Dining out in Scotland is rarely cheap. Still, there is a range of choices for most budgets. If you're looking for bargains, inquire about fixed-price lunches or pre-theater special menus, which can be half the cost of the regular dinner menu. Visit www.5pm.co.uk for a selection of restaurants offering early dining deals.
Smoking -- Smoking is prohibited by law from all enclosed public spaces in Scotland, which includes restaurants and bars. Some, however, may provide outdoor seating where smoking is allowed.
China Buffet King -- Just like in Edinburgh, the buffet-only Chinese restaurant has taken Glasgow by storm. This one is centrally located, at 349 Sauchiehall St. (tel. 0141/333-1788), with a good variety of Chinese food and some European dishes at all-you-can-eat discount prices that are even lower for children. Open daily noon to 11pm.
University Café -- I scream, you scream, we all scream for ice cream. "Knickerbocker Glory" is the king of the ice-cream sundae in Scotland, and few places do it better than this Art Deco landmark at 87 Byres Rd., in the west of Glasgow (tel. 0141/339-5217), with all original features from booths to counters. Open every day except Tuesday from 9am to 10pm (or so).
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.