If you haven't been out already for Christmas dinner with friends or work colleagues, we've found the place to go in Glasgow that's so good we're calling it 'destination Christmas dinner'.
Tucked away at the bottom of Candleriggs in Merchant City is Guy Cowan's Guy's Restaurant & Bar. As soon as we stepped inside from the cold and rain, we were transported into another world. The restaurant was full and cosy, with a live pianist and singer. The atmosphere, and the quirky eclectic decor, made it feel like a cross between fine Parisian dining and a bustling New York establishment.
The dress code is smart casual, and although the food is of fine dining standard, service is relaxed and friendly. It's the sort of place you can sit back for hours after your meal with a brandy and chat, and never feel rushed.
The Christmas Dinner Menu itself is one of the most varied we have ever seen. Sushi for an appetiser anyone? All of our choices were rich, plentiful and cooked to perfection. This is not the place to come if you are on a diet; but is more than worth the £49.50 per head.
For starters, we had Spiced Pumplin Ravioli with Basil Dressing, and Stornoway Black Pudding On Potato Latke & Topped With Hollandaise Sauce and A Duck Egg. The 4 pieces of ravioli was the perfect portion size, and were stuffed full of soft, cinnamon spiced pumpkin. This flavour went so well with the strong basil pesto oil-based dressing.
The poached duck egg on top of the black pudding was runny and just right. It and the hollandaise sauce were the ideal sweet accompaniment to the spiciness of the Stornoway Black Pudding.
For main course, we had the Prune-Stuffed Venison and the Traditional Turkey Dinner. The range of vegetables and potatoes that came with these was amazing- creamy mash, roast potatoes, brussel sprouts, carrots and parsnips. The turkey dinner was the best we have ever had, and genuinely don't think our efforts on the 25th will come anywhere close. The moist turkey came with delicious sage and onion stuffing, fresh and peppery bread sauce, succulent gravy, soft roasted chestnuts, cranberry sauce and very high quality Pigs In Blankets.We requested our venison cooked Medium, and it was served exactly as ordered. The sweet prune filling was a beautiful accompaniment to the strong flavoursome meat. It was heaven.
We were so full that we had a 15-minute rest (before ordering dessert) and pulled our crackers. We nearly weren't allowed any pudding as we weren't wearing our paper hats.
We had the homemade Christmas Pudding that was served with a brandy infused creme-anglaise; and the Chocolate Fondue which was a rich dark chocolate served with grapes, strawberries, pineapple and mango all neatly cut and beautifully presented. Afterwards we relaxed with some coffee, tea and mince pies.
All around us were couples, pairs of friends and groups on work night's out. This really is the perfect place to visit for all occasions. Every Thursday and Saturday you can enjoy the stunning voice of Frances Thorburn and classical pianist David Farrell. Frances Thorburn and David Farrell add an amazing atmosphere to the restaurant, and have just released an album The Velveteen Carousel- full of whimsical and beautiful music that will take you off on a magical journey.