People will regularly while away hours in the comfortable surroundings of Stravaigin in Glasgow’s West End. Olivia Wong says: “We get a lot of walk-ins, folk that come in from the park or from Byres Road. We had people in for breakfast a couple of weeks ago and they sat outside after for some pints, eventually they ordered lunch and then I noticed they were have dinner inside later. We offer a good day out.”

The menu overseen by Head Chef James McRae brings in a myriad of international influences to elevate the best of Scottish ingredients. 

What's on the menu in November? “We have a winter vegetable salad on at the moment that has pickled brambles, celeriac, beetroot from Ayrshire, it adds all these amazing dimensions to the dish from the fresh ingredients” James recommends. “I also have some wonderful venison from Glenfeshie Estate that I will serve with black garlic dauphinoise.”

The National:

Over the course of the day, Stravaigin’s atmosphere transforms from a neighbourhood café into a busy brasserie and bar. “We really get to know the customers” Olivia says, “we see first dates then engagements and weddings. A customer brought his newborn baby in recently to introduce them to the chefs. It’s like an extended family.”

Come through the door and you can wander off the beaten path through global dishes in a traditional Glasgow setting. The kitchen has a long-established reputation of introducing new flavours to compliment the core menu. Think global, eat local has been the mantra since they opened in the nineties. 

Look for lamb belly, tirokafteri, almond dukkah; Barra skate wing, rassam, curry leaf and braised fennel; Malaysian fish supper with beansprout salad and chips; Shetland mussels in a Brazilian moqueca broth.

“We are a welcoming place, we put people at ease and there’s a history there that has earned the trust of diners when we do have something on offer that’s a bit unusual” James says.

“We push every single day to make sure we are setting high standards. Whether you are coming here for the first time or the tenth time, we want the food to be as good as it can be.”