My partner Ryan and I have been excited about Grill on the Corner in Glasgow from the moment it was booked. Saturday night, later booking - I was prepared to be enthralled by this restaurant. Sadly, my experience of Grill on the Corner is much like Scottish weather - miserable.
The restaurant itself is a vacuous, beautifully decorated space. Lots of mismatched mirrors on the wall, low hanging chandeliers and quirky bookcases casually decorated. It reminded me of the mad hatters tea party, but in a sleek and stylish way.
Upon entering the restaurant, there was a waiter behind the podium where menus were kept. Standing on the staircase beside this was a young girl, staring into space, dressed casually. I presumed she was a customer waiting to be served, as she caught eye contact with us and proceeded to stand. I motioned towards the desk, when she suddenly approached us, and asked for our booking details. She did the closest walk to a run I have ever seen round the corner and away from us! Wearing heels and also just coming out of the rain, I trotted after her with Ryan holding my back to ensure I didn't slip and fall. Very impersonal, very rushed and not what I would have expected from a restaurant of it's stature...
|Stunning interior, courtesy of "Top Ten Glasgow Guide"|
Once we were (finally) ready to order, he came back at the ready. I was famished, and decided to go for the chicken pate with Cumberland jelly and toast. Ryan was suffering a mild concussion, and decided against a starter. For the mains, I ordered the Galloway sirloin, medium rare, with peppercorn sauce. To accompany this i chose 'crushed potatoes', that I shall explain later in the review. Ryan opted for the normal sirloin, cooked medium with a side of skin-on fries.
I have to admit, that the food was absolutely outstanding. The pate was served encased in a layer of fat, preserving that delicious meaty flavour beneath. Topped with three sweet berries, the combination was delicious and the jelly was really something. Layered on top of thickly sliced crunchy toast, it was a taste revelation. I only wish there had been more of the pate, as it was absolutely mouthwatering and a pleasure to eat.
|Chicken pate, with Cumberland jelly and toast|
Within minutes, the slate had been cleared from the table. The funny thing is, there was no usual banter that you would expect from a waiter. I am unsure if it was perhaps his first night, but there was no connection from the staff - again very impersonal and not particularly warming. Usually you are asked "how was that for you?" or "was everything alright with your starter?", but not here. I appreciate weekends may be hectic - but we were literally being served so quickly and customer service is such an important part of the dining experience.
Less than five minutes wait, we were met with our mains. All I can say is - WOW! The steaks were absolutely perfect. Cooked to a precision that ensured the steaks were juicy, tender and the right consistency - very well done to the chef.
|Delicious - Galloway sirloin steak with 'crushed' potatoes|
Ryan was overjoyed with his impeccably cooked steak. He said that in all honesty, it is the best steak he has ever had to date! His sirloin cut was very thick, but this did not compromise the juiciness and tenderness of the meat. The skin-on fries arrived in a miniature basket - very cute and a nice touch for decor! Fluffy inside, crunchy outside and lightly salted - the perfect chip!
|Sirloin steak with skin-on fries|
I had asked about the desserts on the menu to our waiter on his return. Trying to gauge him in some polite conversation about cakes and such (part of his job, really) was probably more difficult that riding a bucking bronco on a rickety bridge built on a ship that was sailing on the roughest seas. Yes, really that difficult.
We decided to cut our disappointing visit short and say no to desserts. The menu sounded good, but considering how extensive the main menu was, the variety of desserts available were scarce. I quite like when restaurants do a 'special', such as a cheesecake or a meringue. There are perhaps eight desserts available. Although some do sound fantastic, I was beyond giving anymore chances for bad service.
Ryan paid the bill and left a standard tip. Upon seeing the slightly skimpy tip, the card was pushed back to Ryan and the waiter then left, without so much as a goodbye or a thank you.
The bill came to approximately £66. This was for one starter, two steaks and one glass of wine. I am usually fine to pay this kind of money, however I would expect the staff to be accommodating and helpful, even if it is a pretence.
My opinion of Grill on the Corner is not a good one. The quality and preparation for the food was definitely ten out of ten, and if you aren't big on service then I would recommend visiting. However, if you enjoy the 'out for dinner' experience like I do, then I would not recommend a visit. To give you an overview - we were in and out within an hour.
I am tempted to revisit Grill on the Corner, perhaps to see if this was a fluke or we caught the staff on an 'off' night. Who knows? I certainly don't.
Grill on the Corner
21-25 Bothwell Street