Once head chef at Le Gavroche – London’s famous two Michelin-starred restaurant, originally opened by the Roux brothers in 1967 – Brian Maule has kept Le Chardon d’Or at the very front of Glasgow’s fine-dining scene for the last 16 years. His training is evident while browsing the small, simple menu where French techniques are combined with the best of Scottish produce, a match that is surely hard to beat. A starter of duck trio, is presented well and executed with precision – slices of cured fillet with a crisp fat layer sit beside a rich square of buttery foie gras and a coarse, flavoursome terrine using confit leg meat, pistachios add a splash of colour while a grape chutney and tiny shards of toasted sourdough accompany for sweetness and crunch. For main, try the sea bream – crisp skin gives way to firm white flesh, a French soubise accompanies, sweet with onion and red pepper while courgette tempura and a tasty slab of polenta add interesting textures to the well-dressed plate. Service is formal yet relaxed and surroundings are suitably plush. All round, you will struggle to find a better dining experience in the city.
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