Located in a quiet back street, just off the main road through upmarket Bearsden in Glasgow, is an unassuming building that houses one of the best Spanish Tapas restaurants this side of Andalucia. Las Ramblas is an authentic slice of Spain from the food through to the deçor, although you might not think it at first glance. From the outside it seems relatively small, crammed into the corner of a tiny car park, but when you enter the tardis you discover that there’s more than enough room to swing a Matador or two with ease.
Beautifully decorated in warm Mediterranean colours, this traditional Taverna style restaurant emulates its Continental cousins. The interior decoration is authentic, not a single dodgy sombrero in sight, and there are a few unique touches (the sublime slate wall, for example) that elevate it to the ranks of classy chic.
The atmosphere in Las Ramblas is lively, and every bit as colourful as it’s owner; of Asian descent, he serves traditional Spanish food cooked by his Brazilian chef and served by Scottish waitresses. Now that’s what I call ‘fusion food’, and we’ve not even discussed the menu yet.
And speaking of food, the dishes here are outstanding in both taste and imagination. Traditional Spanish ingredients are married with Scottish fare to create a unique combination of flavours and textures. Try the Champiñones Rellenos (mushrooms stuffed with chorizo & black pudding cooked in chilli oil) to get an idea of what we mean. But if traditional Spanish is what you’re after, then you’re definitely in the right place. Fabulous paellas, tantalising seafood and tasty meat dishes adorn the menu. It’s like a 5* degustation meal without the price tag.
Diners really need to take time to digest the menu and decide between the choices on offer, and if you’re the indecisive type, you might find this difficult. But, that’s the beauty of Tapas. With all the portions in small, manageable sizes, there’s no reason why you can’t try as many as you like (or can manage). Or better yet, take a friend and share. Just remember to leave plenty of room for dessert, because with their signature homemade sticky toffee pudding on the menu, you’d be silly not to!
The service here is quick, but you won’t be made to feel hurried. The staff are happy to let you relax and chill out, and even on the busy Friday night that we visited on there was no pressure to vacate our table in this packed, lively restaurant.
So, next time you fancy dining with a difference, take yourself up to the back streets of Bearsden and stop in at Las Ramblas. You won’t be disappointed.