Eat out, drink up
Barry Shelby maintains good relations with MOTHER INDIA’S CAFE in Glasgow
n the decade or more that The List has been reviewing
restaurants for its annual liming & Drinking Guide. few
have scored marks as consistently high as Glasgow‘s Mother India. A perennial ‘llit List” commendation winner. .\lonir Mohammed's operation branched out ﬁrst with the charming Wee (‘urry Shop in the city centre. Then came a second Wee (‘urry in Ashton Lane. Now. closer to the llagship restaurant in the West lind near Kelvingrove. comes Mother lndia's ('afe.
The emphasis at this venture is on small dishes — ‘thali'. The menu offers some 40 different ones. including deep-fried aubergine fritters or a slowly cooked chicken (on the bone) karahi. There is the familiar — chicken or lamb saag and chana aloo — as well some things that are a wee hit different. The chilli chicken dosa (pictured) has whole cloves of pickled garlic and spicy chicken wrapped in a lentil-based pancake served with dhal. Haddock is wrapped in foil and cooks its own juices -— as well as some complementary Pujabi spices.
As those familar with the Wee (‘urry Shop will expect. prices are reasonable. The many vegetarian options are under £3. while nothing costs over £4. The portions are such
Tilt: Mill 'r/wrmi o
‘I 14 THE LIST ‘2 1:") Apr 900/.
that three dishes split between two diners (with a bit of
chapati. naan or rice on the side) creates a substantial lunch. Five is a filling dinner. The cafe is licensed. with ten wines available by the bottle (starting at £9.50) and draught Kingﬁsher lager also on offer.
The decor is understated — not unlike the homely feel the space offered when it traded as Kook‘s. A small serving bar greets guests at the door and the open kitchen remains to the fore. Colour-drenched photography of Glasgow by Pali not only depicts ‘rival’ curry houses such as the Shenaz or Shimla Pinks but also sheds new light on some local landmarks. Particularly dramatic is an image of the shiny shell of the quay-side Science Centre. The an is hung in the smaller (smoke-free) dining room near the front door. open kitchen. and the more spacious rear area. Overall it feels comfortable. and the hope is to recreate the neighbourly arnbience with weekend brunch.
Mother India’s Cafe, 1355 Argyle Street, Glasgow, 0141 339 9145. The new, updated edition of The List Eating & Drinking Guide is out on 29 April.
YE OLDE GOLF TAVERN 30 Wright’s Houses, Edinburgh
Tiger Woods once said: ‘Hockey is a sport for white men. Basketball is a spon for black men. And golf is ‘a sport for white men dressed like black pimps.“ Sports (and their stars) have assets and weaknesses: being groovy is not golf's strong point. Until its recent refit, Bruntsfield's Golf Tavern was a pleasant if unexceptional pub. pitched somewhere between student dive and old man's boozer. Now. the twee name belies the modern interiors. The first floor has been redeCOrated in a style-bar uniform:
.3” brown sofa benches and exposed ventilation ducts. Downstairs. signed shirts sit in
" glass cabinets, while neon-lit golfing friezes beam from cubby holes. Flat screens replay sponing triumphs. backed by a vaguely trendy SOundtrack. The gantries offer a standard range of beer and Spirits. joined by a cocktail and shooter list that brims with comedy (Vladi Chambulls, anyone?) Still, the new Golf's not bad: the big soreens make it a decent place to catch a game. Anyone looking for a neutral but vaguely buzzing boozer in this end of town knows the options are limited. A definitive 19th hole. though, Ye Olde Golf Tavern ain't. (James Smart)
News to nibble on . . .
I GLASGOW’S WEST END has been a hotbed of activity. As well as Mother India’s Café (see panel), newcomers include Roastit Bubbly Jocks, Baby Grand (pictured) and Little Mexico and the recast Observatory.
I SCOTTISH AND COMFORT food are the speciality of Roastit Bubbly Jocks cafe/bistro on Dumbarton Road. The name is Scots for roast turkey and the venture is the latest from Mo Abdulla (ex Fanny Trollopes and the Cabin), and chef Chris Bryers. The setting is casual and the hours long — food is served all day until about 9.30pm.
I THE OBSERVATORY is now in the hands of Kevan Cargill, best known for managing Air Organic’s bar. This off-centre location near the Greek Thomson hotel, betwixt the city centre and the West End’s heart, has potential as a hip alternative. The former astrological kitsch has been junked and Cargill says they’re ‘taking food seriously’. Plus there are £3 cocktails on Friday and a Sunday brunch.
I LITTLE MEXICO IS ACROSS from the Kelvingrove Art Gallery in a space that has suffered (in no small thanks to the museum currently being closed). But owners have reinvested and upgraded the kitchen. which now shifts a range of Mexican-inspired cuisine, from basic burritos to more elaborate dishes such as char-grilled lamb chops.
I BABY GRAND IS A second outlet for the well- known New York-style haunt in Charing Cross. The new digs (where Gordon Yuill and Co sang their swan song) are brighter and more contemporary than the flagship, but the bar/bistro ethos is the same and a piano will have its ebonies ﬁddled frequently.