The best places in Glasgow to grab a curry
For years curry was Britain’s favourite treat or take away cuisine. Now, according to reports, Mexican food has replaced the traditional Indian fare as the go to the comfort food of choice. But, as the ‘second city of Empire’, Glasgow was exposed early to the exotic flavours and spices of the subcontinent and developed a strong taste for curry.
And the Weegie love affair with a good old ‘Ruby Murray’ shows little sign of slowing down, with a whole host of top notch Indian restaurants spread across the city. Whether you’re out for date night, catching up with friends, lining your stomach or sobering up, Glasgow is home to a mouthwatering selection of curry houses. GlasgowLiving has picked out some of the city’s favourites.
60-68 Park Road
When it comes to curry in Glasgow, Shish Mahal is an institution, which is now in its sixth decade of dishing out delicious dinners to hungry diners. Legendary restaurant owner ‘Mr Ali’ has been in business since 1964 and is still going strong. His father opened Green Gates, considered Glasgow’s first proper Indian restaurant, in 1959. When it comes to quality curry, Shish Mahal certainly has had plenty years of practice to get it absolutely right.
Now round the corner from its original Gibson Street home, Shish Mahal prides itself on fine dining and lays claim to be the inventor of chicken tikka masala. With an extensive menu of flavoursome curry choices and grilled tandoori dishes, all cooked to perfection and mostly coming in around the £10 mark for main meals; a three course lunch menu served up at £7.50; or four course lunch for only £8.50, it is little wonder Shish Mahal has been a Glasgow favourite for 53 years.
OBSESSION OF INDIA
25 High Street
Of the near 1,000 TripAdvisor reviewers to have visited this central Glasgow curry gem, over 80 percent have scored Obsession as a five-star restaurant.
Traditional curry favourites such as bhuna and dopiaza as well as house specialities like naintara and south Indian garlic chilli are available in vegetable, paneer, chicken, lamb and prawn and range from a very reasonable £8 – £16, while the chef’s signature dishes are similarly reasonably costed at £11 – £17. The bargain £9.95 two courses pre-theatre menu is a steal while an even more thrifty two-course lunch is available Thursday to Saturday for an incredible £6.95.
If you’re stuck for choice then be sure to discuss your palette preferences with restaurant manager Kami, restaurant manager of the year in the 2017 Scottish Curry Awards, who will be sure to find the right dish just for you as well as the perfect beverage to accompany it.
192-194 Byres Road and 261 Hope Street
Across its west end and city centre restaurant’s Masala Twist serves up some of the best-tasting curries in the city at affordable prices. The restaurant takes traditional Indian fare, throws in local produce and gives it a modern twist.
Traditional Indian restaurant favourites are joined on the menu by classic regional dishes from across the Indian subcontinent, with classic tastes of Punjab, Goa and Hyderabad. There are curried exotic meats for the adventurous eater, with crocodile, camel or rabbit dishes that are recommended to the curry connoisseur. And if you’re feeling brave, Masala Twist offer what they claim is Scotland’s hottest curry – a fiery chicken dish with a sauce made using the world’s eight hottest chillies. It’s certainly not for the faint-hearted and only those over 21 are allowed to attempt to tame the inferno. Toilet paper on ice!
235 North Street
Named after a precious 13th-century diamond, Koh-I-Noor the restaurant is a gem in its own right. Like Shish Mahal, Koh-I-Noor opened on Gibson Street in 1964, becoming the first Indian restaurant on what became a curry hotspot in the city. Now situated near Charing Cross, the restaurant is still family run with the second and third generations of the family now overseeing service.
A delicious three-course lunch will set you back £8.95 Monday to Saturday, with pre-theatre coming in at a very reasonable £12.95. For those with a healthy appetite why not tuck into the restaurant’s famous evening buffet menu? Choose from eight starters, 11 main meal choices and seven desserts for only £13.95 (£14.95 on Friday and Saturday). The a la carte menu combines old favourites with house specialities, all honed with over 50 years of curry creating craft.
607 Polloksahws Road
Ranjit’s is something of a Southside hidden gem, currently flying high as the city’s best rated Indian cuisine restaurant on TripAdvisor. If you want a truly authentic curry taste then head for Ranjit’s, which has brought traditional Panjabi cooking to the heart of Glasgow, staying true to the recipes of north India and eastern Pakistan. Delicious fresh curries are cooked on a daily basis, with the ever changing menu determined by the local availability of produce. But when they’re gone they’re gone, so check the restaurant Facebook page for today’s choices and head down early to avoid disappointment.
Generous portions are served at very generous prices (Daal of the day served with 2 rotis is just £3.95 while a Panjabi tea for two is charged at £11.95!) The restaurant’s entirely vegetarian menu might not immediately appear to the carnivorous Weegie but if anywhere can make you not miss meat then it is Ranjit’s, which claimed the Outstanding Curry of the Year prize at the 2017 Scottish Curry Awards.
MOTHER INDIA’S CAFE
1355 Argyle Street
Do you ever sit in a restaurant going back and forth over your dinner choice, just unable to split the butter chicken from the lamb karahi? Mother India’s Cafe has the perfect solution for you – curry tapas!
This is the perfect way to experience new flavours whilst maintaining your allegiance to old favourites, while the tapas style dining will encourage interaction and sharing, ideal whether you’re among old friends or on an awkward first date.
The restaurant doesn’t take bookings but instead operates a first come, first served policy. And such is the popularity that queues often snake out the building. So get down early to avoid disappointment, and with the night still young take a relaxing stroll around the adjacent Kelvingrove gallery and park as you digest the stunning selection of curry you’ve just devoured.
CURRY ON THE HILL
3 Bemersyde Avenue
A relative newcomer, Curry on the Hill has quickly become a firm favourite with Glasgow spice lovers and picked up the Best of Glasgow award at this years Scottish Curry Awards. The restaurant’s stunning interior, complete with fire pit and water features, will certainly capture your attention, but this is certainly not a case of all style and no substance as the food matches the quality of the surroundings.
This family friendly restaurant comprises three separate dining areas and serves top quality Indian cuisine prepared using fresh local ingredients.
Pre-theatre two courses (£9.95) and three courses (£11.95) menus are available Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday with the vast a la carte menu spanning signature dishes, house specialities, traditional curry house favourites and perfectly barbecued tandoori served seven days at appealing prices.
This central Glasgow eatery was the first Indian restaurant in the whole of the UK to serve 100 percent gluten free food – yip that’s right, even the naan bread is suitable for those with allergy restricted dietary requirements or the carb conscious fitness fanatic.
Dakhin’s menu is inspired by traditional south Indian cuisine, with rice, coconut, lentils and spices predominate. The a la carte menu is generously priced but Dakhin’s three-course lunch deal (£9.95) and early evening two-course feast (£15.95) have proved a particular favourite with curry loving Glaswegians.
As for the myth that you can’t drink wine with curry, well let Dakhin take care of that with their painstakingly selected wine list which can be perfectly paired with the style and flavours of your food choice.
Mexican food might be taking over the hearts of the rest of the UK but, in Glasgow, curry is still king. Long live the king!
Please give us a shout if there are any good Peswari places we may have missed out on…