Glasgow? Food?! – our east coast cousins scoff.
Okay, so we’re sure folks in Edinburgh love visiting Glasgow as much as we love heading their way – but a little friendly competition never hurt anyone.
With Glasgow’s foodie scene on the tip of everyone’s tongue at the moment, we decided to take on WOW247 Edinburgh in a culinary head-to-head.
Sure, they have the accolades – but can they cut the mustard in comparison to trendy Glasgow? We think not…
1. Glasgow can lay claim to Irn Bru
Ah, sweet fizzy ginger…where would Scotland be without your orangey glow, your hangover-quelling bubbles? With A.G Barr just down the road in Cumbernauld, we’d call the other national drink a big win for Glasgow. Cheer up, Edinburghers…have an Irn Bru.
2. …and Tunnock’s teacakes
My consumption of Tunnock's Teacakes has gone up by about 700% since the Commonwealth Opening Ceremony. pic.twitter.com/LUziuqNvro
— Jennifer Smith (@jennismith129) August 28, 2014
Remember the opening of the Commonwealth Games – those dancing teacakes swirling round and working up your appetite for all the wrong reasons (exercise? pfft!)? With the Tunnock’s factory a mere jaunt to Uddingston, it’s safe to say Glasgow can lay claim to another one of Scotland’s beloved exports. Add in Caramel Wafers and it’s round two to us – sorry, Edinburgh.
3. There’s no salt ‘n’ sauce over here, thank you very much
Dear, sweet Edinburgh…let’s get this out of the way quickly, shall we? Salt ‘n’ sauce, as you put it, is an abomination – an insult to the fluffy fried chip. Here in Glasgow, we love our chips. We’ll have them with just about anything – and if it’s post-midnight, that’s usually orange Play-Doh masquerading as cheese or meat: unknown origin. But vinegary brown sauce? We’ll leave you to that one, thanks – keep it that side of Falkirk and we’ll all be happy.
4. We’re the burger capital
If there’s one thing Glasgow has learned, it’s our way around a decent burger. Brioche or pretzel bun, pulled pork or bacon jam on top – you won’t run short of choices this side of the M8. Edinburgh has been going gaga over Burger Meats Bun since it opened capital-side, but they would do well to remember that BMB adopted Glasgow first – and now it’s one of many vying for the burger crown (no, really…there’s a yearly prize and everything).
5. Glasgow has a thriving street food scene
With the city’s foodie star still on the rise, it’s hard to keep up with all the pop ups, eat-and-go canteens and special event trucks offering world cuisine at your fingertips (quite literally). Yes, our eastern counterpart may have the edge (only just) on fine dining establishments, but if it’s excitement, intrigue and ingredients you can’t yet pronounce then Glasgow’s your gal – our street food trumps Edinburgh’s, hands down.
6. …but our fine dining options are ever increasing
A wiser Glaswegian than the one writing this once said: “never mind the quality – feel the width”. It sums up the Glasgow relationship with fine dining – none of yer wee dots on plates, if you please, or we’ll be stopping for a poke of chips on the way home. Thankfully, some of those fine dining types have finally figured it out, pitching high end cuisine and sophisticated flavours with decent portions and prices a Glasgow punter can stomach. Okay, so Edinburgh has a few stars to its name – but with places like Ox and Finch, The Gannet and The Honours at Malmaison bringing Glasgow’s standards ever higher, it’s only a matter of time. In short: we’re coming for you, Edinburgh, forks at the ready.
7. We make the best of our favoured produce
Now… ask for dirty (yet delicious) food and Glasgow is three steps ahead of you, having set off braising the pork shoulder in fizzy ginger before you got up this morning. We’ve mentioned Bloc’s Not Dog and Dirty Burger a few times now – but did you know that the bar’s own Mad Chef (self-titled) produces Irn Bru pork and Buckfast ice cream too? Hey, don’t knock it until you’ve tried it.
8. You can dine out for under a fiver
3 course lunch for £4.50 !!!!!! Available every day of the week. pic.twitter.com/HKaeSR72XC
— The Horseshoe Bar (@GlasgowShoe) February 6, 2014
Glaswegians in the know head to hidden away bar The Horseshoe for lunch for precisely three reasons. The first? A hearty soup to warm your cockles from the Glesga rain. The second? Well, that’s up to you…fish and chips, pie, lasagne. The lounge bar is your oyster. And the third? That’ll be your wee sweet for afters. The three courses for £4.50 deal has been going for decades (it was even cheaper back then), and you’re just as likely to spot local celebrities supping a pint with their pie as weekday punters. Edinburgh, you can keep your Michelin stars. Sometimes you need to count the pennies – and this is the place for it.
9. Trendy breweries like West and Drygate are round the corner
If craft beer is the trend then consider Glasgow the bearded, tattooed, loafers-wearing hipster. The city churns out some fantastic brews – and breweries-turned-bars like Drygate and West Beer are shining examples of Glasgow’s way with hops. Apple ale? Wheat beer brewed to German purity laws? It’s so good, you’ll even find bottles of St Mungo and Drygate over east – but you know what they say: there’s no place like home.
10. West boasts the gorgeous Templeton building as a backdrop
Just look at it. Need we say more? Edinburgh, you can keep your castle, your winding cobbles and your cobbled wynds. How many cities house their breweries in such splendour? And that’s before we get to the fact that Templeton used to be a carpet factory. Grab a pint of St Mungo and elbow your way to a spot in the beer garden – we have some architectural ogling to do.
11. We have the Scooby Snack
Thank The Maggie – a long-established Botanics food truck – for this artery-clogging wonder. We’re not claiming that it has health-giving properties – but students who have indulged in one too many pints of Diesel at the QMU the night before are in for a fog-clearing treat. Tourists, forget the deep-fried Mars Bar; we’re talking a bread roll packed with burger, square sausage, bacon, tattie scone, fried egg and a slice of cheese. It’s street food, Glasgow style – and putting broon sauce on your chippy just doesn’t compare.
12. Glasgow has held the UK curry capital title four times
Where are your four curry capital trophies, eh Edinburgh? Okay, so we’re not sure whether there’s a trophy – but we can confirm that Glasgow has clinched the title four times, matched only by Bradford. Glasgow institutions like Mother India and trendier alternatives like Babu Bombay Street Kitchen are forever proving that the city produces some top notch Indian food – and while we’re sure our east coast cousins have a few spicy delights up their sleeves, nothing compares to the great Glasgow curry.
13. Shish Mahal invented the tikka masala (apparently)
We know tikka masala is about as Indian as The Krankies, but…actually, that’s our point entirely. Legend has it that west end curry house Shish Mahal invented the dish in the 1970s when an unhappy diner complained his meat was dry and the owner threw together a sauce of spices and tinned tomato soup. While we can’t fully verify the tale, we can say that Lonely Planet named the Shish Mahal as the best place on earth to try a tikka masala – where’s your internationally renowned fushion food, eh Edinburgh?
14. Our ice cream parlours are enticing year-round
Traditional Italian ice cream? Sure, you can get it elsewhere in Scotland – but Glasgow’s dessert options seem to shine that little bit brighter. From cross-generation favourites like the University Cafe and Coia’s and to towering sundae touters Nardini’s and Crolla’s, Glasgow knows how to ice cream. And we’re a hardy bunch – a little rain, sleet or snow never gets in the way of a 99er or a scoop of finest tablet flavour.
15. We’re fast falling in love with food
Glasgow food bloggers should have their own clubhouse – the problem is, we couldn’t fit them all in. For a city famed for deep fried Mars Bars and accompanying heart attacks, something funny is happening on this side of the M8. Glasgow’s culinary upsurge has resulted in a genuine interest, and all of a sudden everyone’s a foodie. Now, we’re not saying Edinburgh doesn’t have its enthusiasts – but having dined out on fine foods for a while now, we can’t help but think you’re a little jaded over there. Glasgow, on the other hand, is seeing the light at the end of the artisanal smoker – and true passion will win any argument.
We know there’s no doubt Glasgow’s food is better than Edinburgh’s, but have a read of their claims for foodie supremacy and laugh (while eating a Tunnocks)…
Main pic: Bloc