A market you should visit!

For our last meal out of 2012, we decided to go somewhere we hadn’t been before. As I had the choice, I opted for Central Market, a recently opened restaurant in the Merchant City of Glasgow. 

We went along & were seated upstairs in the balcony area which I was quite happy with as you could see everything that was going on. It isn’t the largest of restaurants but they can easily accommodate large parties as a table of around 12 with children were next to us. A couple of nice touches Central Market has is to have their oysters on display at the front of the bar, proving that they are fresh & also having a relatively open plan kitchen, allowing you to see exactly where your food is coming from. The toilets are unisex which is quite unusual! Another mention is that a pint of Bierra Moretti is only £4, much cheaper than Italian restaurants in the city – this was a big tick for Al.

                                                    

Central Market’s menu can’t really be describe as run of the mill. They offer a lot of brunch items, with a range of sandwiches for lunchtime. Their main menu has the usual items such as terrine, mussels, steak & burgers but they also offer more unusual items like sardines, steak tartare & pork shoulder steak. Part of the reason for choosing the Central Market was that they served oysters & I had been wanting them since The Grill On The Corner had run out the night we were in. For starters we opted for 6 Oysters & Sardines to share and for mains I went for the Spatchcock Poussain & Al went for the 6oz Burger. 

 

We managed to get the last portion of sardines available & I have to say I wasn’t too sure about them when they arrived as they came whole which meant fish bones!! I have to admit, my first thoughts were soon set aside after tucking into them. They were excellent! The meat fell off the bones & any bones that were left over were big enough for you to notice them. The sardines came with a lime & chorizo oil which really complimented the fish. The lime was a good contrast. We soon tucked into the oysters which came with 3 accompaniments – tabasco (yay!), soy sauce & a red onion viniagrette type sauce. I tried all 3 & they all went very well, with only the red onion one maybe being a bit too tart for my liking.

 

There wasn’t a long wait between our starter & main. The spatchcock poussain was delicious! I don’t know what seasoning they had put on the chicken skin but it was slightly crunchy with a salty taste to it, really nice. It was accompanied by roast anya potatoes & a sprout salad. It tasted a bit like coleslaw as it was quite creamy but it went really well with the spatchcock & I wish they had a deli section so I could go & get a tub of it to take home!! Neither myself or Al are big tomato fans so when I noticed him tucking into the burger without taking the tomato out I asked him if he’d forgotten. He pointed to the bottom of the burger where the tomato was mushed up & he said it actually didn’t taste like a tomato, it was more of a smokey flavour. I had a taste of the burger & to me it tasted a bit like a hot dog! Not that it was unpleasant, just a bit different from the usual strong beef flavour you would expect. The french fries were also nice & crispy & not overly pre-salted.

Overall, we thoroughly enjoyed our first visit to Central Market. I’ve since recommended it to a few people & intend on going back to try Steak Tartare for the first time!

A Spot of Brunch: 1

On a lazy Sunday morning, making breakfast is generally something that seems like too much effort. Mornings like these, we usually head to the Rio Cafe on Hyndland Road for some satisfying brunch.

This morning, however, we decided to broaden our horizons & go elsewhere (mainly so I wouldn’t be tempted by chips right at the end of my detox programme). After much deliberation, we decided to head to the Hyndland Cafe, purely because they were local & did milkshakes, which I had a hankering for!

When we arrived, we were lucky in that there was a table free. I was surprised at how small it was given all the good reviews I’d read online, I had expected somewhere with more than 5 tables & a window seat! Trying to decide what to eat was tough due to the variety on offer – toasties, bagels, cooked breakfast, french toast, pancakes and different types of eggs. Usually this decision is aided by seeing what other people are eating but in such a small cafe, it was difficult to see what others had chosen.

I decided on a chilli & cheese toastie, something a bit different that I had never thought of putting in a toastie before! Whilst we waited for our food, which was a bit too long for my liking (around 15 mins), the table next to us got 2 servings of french toast, bacon & maple syrup & eggs benedict – all of which looked really tasty!

Our food finally came & I can say I wasn’t disappointed. The chilli had a good flavour to it & not too much cheese in the toastie that it took away from the taste of the chilli.The homemade coleslaw was also a nice accompaniment. 

Overall, a good & fulfilling Sunday brunch. I think we will be back as I really want to sample the french toast which looked really tasty. A word of warning if you go to sit in – expect to wait a while as the amount of people getting take away gives the lone chef a lot of work to do which can leave you hungry whilst you wait for your food.