Café Gandolfi

Extract Food and Travel

Glasgow Eating Out – Café Gandolfi 

It may have taken its name from a great Italian camera maker, but a Gandolfi Standard is known in Glasgow as a menu item. Quirky? Not if you think of the city as a place where creative imagination thrives, and not just in the kitchen.

Glasgow has been good at reinventing itself. Once a salmon-fishing village on the banks of the Clyde, it soon turned to trade and expanded eastwards. Then it hit the tobacco bonanzo and some people got very rich. And when this fell through, they turned to shipbuilding. Now that grim and grubby greatness has been mostly washed away and a clean, new face of Glasgow is celebrating its status as a city of culture and architecture.

And a Gandolfi Standard? Well, that’s a hybrid range of dishes served at the Café restaurant opened in the 1970s by Glaswegian Gandolfi fan, Ian McKenzie, and now run by his partner Seumas MacInnes. Original stained glass, unique carved furniture by Tim Stead and a friendly Bohemian atmosphere is the style. Among the Gandolfi Standards you will find a renowned Stornoway black pudding with mushrooms and Scotch pancakes, a traditional Cullen skink made with a Finnan haddock, an Arbroath smokie served with tomato and cream and a legendary plateful of haggis from Cockburn’s of Dingwall with tatties and neeps. The restaurant is a landmark in the Merchant City, once the home of rich tobacco merchants whose grand houses are among the great architectural sights.