The Ivy, Glasgow


106 Buchanan St, Glasgow, , G1 2NB
Food 4/5    
Service 5/5    
Setting 5/5
Value 3/5    
Opened in 1917, The Ivy became one of the most famous restaurants in London for its high quality and luxury fine dining. It became a hot spot for celebrities and theatre goers due to it being located just at the corner of Covent Garden, next to London’s sprawling Theatre land with big names such as the Beckhams, Andrew Lloyd Webber and Amy Winehouse being regular visitors. Very rarely could you pick up a copy of Heat magazine without seeing some big name being spotted and therefore became a desirable place to visit.

Having been to the London restaurant roughly 7 years ago we were delighted to see the venue like all good things was coming to Glasgow and have been eagerly anticipating its arrival. It’s fair to say that it has had very mixed reviews since arriving with criticisms of its high price point and “service charge” not a popular or common thing to do in Glasgow. Alas, we are here to finally give you the lowdown on what is considered this years biggest and perhaps most controversial arrival. It is essentially a very British institution so can Glasgow stomach a huge piece of London Town? Well judging by the initial footfall it would appear so but will the initial hype keep up to become a staple Glasgow eaterie? You are about to get 3 opinions! Two from the original Mystery Diners and a bonus opinion. Let’s dig in and find out...

🙋🏻‍♂‍OPINION 1: This kind of venue is what I live for. When entering it oozes class. Remembering the building well as my old bank Nationwide, it has had a total transformation in layout and looks incredible. The artwork and plants give it a unique feel and there is a cosy Christmas touch also. Instantly we are greeted with a very warm Glaswegian welcome, one that London would struggle to achieve. When it comes to service we do it best. 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿 Once sat down, first thing is drinks and let’s get this out the way you will need to come with a heavy wallet with an impressive wine list but also a pricy one. We choose the cheapest bottle of New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc which came in at £38 which we did consider to be pricier than most other restaraunts for one of the cheaper options. We also decide to have something sparkly as it’s Xmas and choose a glass of gold label Champagne, a Bellini and Kir Royale ranging from £11-£14 each. 🤑 Once drinks arrive though we are impressed with the quality.

Looking at the menu you really have a more British affair with Shepards Pie, Prawn Cocktail and Fish & Chips but also some unique worldly foods.

For my starter I chose Rosti & Wild Mushroom. It was delicious 😋 I love Mushrooms and the Rosti was like a decent sized non greasy hash brown it tasted light while feeling carby and wholesome. The sauce was to die for. I would have this again for sure.

For my main I decided on the Aromatic Duck. I was really pleased with my option as it had a touch of spice and the duck was so tender it was a decent effort, almost a little Thai. It was rather good. Dessert, I normally choose a lighter option if I am doing 3 courses so choose the ice cream & frozen berries. It had a lovely green & earthy flavour but was essentially a simple dish.

The service was really great throughout and I had a lovely time here. Once the bill arrived, I won’t lie, it's a shocker 😂 A visit to The Ivy is for a special occasion and if you have cash to splash then it’s a must try!

OPINION 2: The Ivy Glasgow makes a good first impression with its classy relaxed 1900s / 1920s style interior. Like its London cousin, the green accent colour is heavily emphasised giving some feeling of an English garden. We are soon shown to our table and the service is very attentive. I order some yellow label champagne whilst I am perusing the menu which proves ideal for the occasion.

For a starter, I order the crispy duck salad. This is well presented, although it has a punchy ginger flavour which I find pleasant, yet a bit too intense verging on overpowering. For my main, I pick the lobster linguine, this is perfectly pleasant, although the lobster is a bit on the tough side (perhaps being a bit overcooked). A squeeze of lemon over the top helped bring it together. I select a nice New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc to accompany, which proves to be a nice bottle. Finally, for dessert, I select the Malted banana ice cream – a chocolate brownie, caramelised banana, candied pecans and cocoa nib tuile. This is fabulous, and a perfect dessert to end the meal. Overall, this was a pleasant festive experience, the service is excellent, the atmosphere agreeable. The food could perhaps be perfected with a little more attention to detail.

OPINION 3 👩‍🍳 The Ivy, on first impressions, has a luxurious and cosy interior with a classy but unpretentious vibe. I went with high expectations as this is the famous Ivy brand everyone is talking about.

As an Instagram addict, I was browsing on the Insta page before my visit to check out pictures of the food, but I also found quite a few pics of celebs, which proves that this is the place to be.
To start with I opted for the signature cocktail, The Ivy Royale, which was tasty with lovely botanical flavours.

For starters, I had Laverstoke Park Farm buffalo mozzarella, which was very flavoursome and the cheese went very well with the pear and truffle honey, making it very moreish.

For my main, I requested the Sirloin Steak (medium rare) with truffle and parmesan chips and Creamed spinach, toasted pine nuts and grated Parmesan. Unfortunately, when this arrived it had not been cooked medium rare but was more well done. This was mentioned to the waiter who quickly offered to fix this with no issues, which I was very pleased with. He took away the dish and said he would bring a new one with fresh sides cooked correctly.

When my new steak arrived I cut into it and it was cooked the way I wanted, juicy and tender. The chips with truffle and parmesan were nice but were a little dry, however, there could have been more seasoning and more truffle flavour.

For dessert, I opted for the Chocolate bombe - melting chocolate bombe with a vanilla ice cream and honeycomb centre with hot salted caramel sauce. I'd mentioned to the waiter that I had ordered the same dish from Chaophraya a few days earlier and that I would be comparing the two. When I was asked for my opinion I had to say that this wasn't as good as the Chaophraya one 🙈, as it wasn't as rich in flavour, and the honeycomb seemed to have popping candy in it which hadn't been mentioned in the description.

Overall, The Ivy is a place for a special occasion, if you have a bit of cash to splash. I will definitely return to try new dishes and a few cheeky (rather posh) cocktails 🍹🍸🕺

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Fine Dining