Stravaigin – Not just for Sunday Brunch

Up until recently I’d only ever eaten Sunday brunch at Stravaigin. They do a great French toast and an even better bloody Mary so needless to say it’s become a real Sunday favourite. But last week a friend of mine (absolutely charming chap) suggested that I break with tradition and pop in for a mid-week meal. As soon as I walked in I couldn’t believe how busy it was. I used to work in restaurants in my younger years and any shift before Thursday meant two things, rubbish tips and an early night but it didn’t seem like either would be the case in Stravaigin. A good sign.

If you’ve never been to Stravaigin before one of the things I love about it is it’s decor. It’s warm and rustic. Vintage and cosy. And there are lots of unusual light fittings and fairy lights. Ideal. We sat at a little table in the fairy lit second floor and immediately got down to ordering some drinks (yes, we had our priorities in order). Disappointingly, they didn’t have any sloe gin (haven’t they heard about All Systems Sloe?!*) so I decided to be a bit adventurous and have a mojito. The charming chap had a G and T and I must say he became all the more charming when he specified Hendricks gin (who doesn’t love a good Scottish brand?). The drinks took a little while but once they’d arrived they were lovely. In fairness you can’t really go wrong with a G and T but I’ve had a few bad mojitos in my time but this certainly wasn’t one of them. A hearty helping of both alcohol and mint. Just the way I like it.

The food was hard to decide on given that my usual French toast was out of the question. After a long look I decided on mussels with sweet chilli and coriander, followed by Ligurian fish stew with fennel, fregola and pesto crouton. Neither let me down and both completely warmed me up on what was a very cold, damp November evening (I’m sure the mojito assisted with that too!). The charming chap had haggis, neeps and tatties and cumin and garlic roast pork belly, curry leaf and red lentil rassam, gram flour polenta and kohlrabi. I must admit to stealing a bit of both (all in the name of research) and again neither disappointed but the real favourite of the evening was the juniper sorbet I had to finish. Juniper is one of the main ingredients in gin so it was a no-brainer for me and after such hearty portions I don’t think I could’ve handled anything else. (Unfazed the boy had sticky toffee pudding). Also, the unusually flavoured, home-made desert was served on a bit of slate and I love it when restaurants do odd things like that.

Mabel’s Pick for: Cosy and dare I say romantic mid-week meals!

Stravaigin can be found at 28 Gibson Street, Kelvinbridge, Glasgow G12 8NX. Probably best to book so give them a bell on 0141 334 2665

*’What’s that?’ you say. You haven’t heard of the All Systems Sloe campaign? Well, let me fill you in. After a delightful experience in the country picking sloes a few years ago sloe gin has become my tipple of choice. However, to my total dismay I have discovered that VERY few places in Glasgow actually stock the stuff in their bars. A horrible oversight, I’m sure you’ll agree. And so, I have taken it upon myself to get on Twitter and try and make a change. Let’s not be apathetic here folks. A small number really can make a difference. Get. Involved. Follow Mabel on Twitter @mabelslog, and join the campaign to get our bars stocked with sloe!