Neighbourhood Watch: Byres Road, Glasgow
A rough guide to the trendiest road in the West
What’s it like?
One big road with many little offshoots to appeal to the culture vulture in you.
Where’s it, like?
Off Great Western road if you hang a left at the Botanic Gardens, and just up from Partick. Take the tube to Hillhead station (soon to be newly renovated – thanks, Subway modernisation campaign) and you’ll pop out right in the middle.
Who’s from there?
Byres road is a decent shout if you want to play a cash-for-points game of ‘Glasgow indie band spotting’. We’ve also seen Billy Boyd, Limmy and Frankie Boyle on the stroll in the ’hood, as well as Neil Lennon, if you’re into that sort of thing.
Why would I go there?
For bevvy, there’s the old oaky feel of Òran Mór or the multitude of bars on Ashton Lane, including Vodka Wodka (a good shout for a summer beer garden), Brel or The Grosvenor Café. If you’re feeling hip, head to Hillhead Bookclub on adjacent Vinicombe Street to play some ping pong and enjoy a cocktail deal. The Curry Leaf has some of the best daal in the West, while Home Wok does affordable sushi and offers home delivery for those not willing to venture out on foot. Little Italy is a tasty lunch-break alternative. Cutesy coffee shops include Avenue G, Tinderbox, Patisserie Francoise and Three Steps to Heaven on Cresswell Lane, offering a swell summer ice-cream selection. Vintage lovers should head to Dowanside Lane while it’s around and De Courcy’s Arcade, as well as hitting up We Love To Boogie on the main thoroughfare.
291 Byres Road,
The West End coffee haven once known as Avenue G, now Avenue Coffee, is renowned for its lovingly prepared locally sourced dishes.
The Brasserie at Òran Mór
731–735 Great Western Road,
Oran Mor is a terrific institution and one of the city’s most successful church-turned-bar ventures. It's a lively pub, restaurant, club, wedding venue and theatre – with a ceiling painted by writer and artist Alasdair Gray and a jaunty neon halo…
39–43 Ashton Lane,
This Ashton Lane institution named after Belgian cultural icon Jacques was serving good strong continental beers way back when many of Glasgow’s now repurposed craft pubs were still swilling anonymous macro-brews. The improvements made by Oli Norman and…
The Curry Leaf
139 Bruntsfield Place,
Takeaway review Unlike so many run-of-the-mill establishments, Curry Leaf makes a real effort at inventiveness and style. Flavours are fresh, herbs are plentiful, and even the old favourites step outside standard expectations. Particular stand-outs…
Glasgow Botanic Gardens
730 Great Western Road,
A great place to relax in summer or take a brisk walk in winter, with a programme of events including stargazing, gardening talks and even theatre. Also look out for exotics and exhibitions in Kibble Palace Glasshouse and the vegetable, herb and flower…
The Grosvenor Café
The Grosvenor Theatre, Ashton Lane,
Spacious bar above the Grosvenor Cinema serving an Italian-inspired menu and plenty of drinks promos.
17 Vinicombe Street,
Just around the corner from Hillhead Library sits the Hillhead Bookclub. While the former caters for actual kids the latter has plenty to excite those wishing to relive the halcyon days of their youth. In the wings of the upper tier you can choose to…
101 Byres Road,
The family owners of this modest but meaningful establishment have created a solid, popular menu with no reliance on greasy oils that leave an after-taste. On the contrary, the crispy coconut king prawns are light as a feather and deliciously delicate.
205 Byres Road,
Takeaway review Given the very reasonable prices and its prime Byres Road location, Little Italy is always going to benefit from a high footfall, but it is the quality of the food that ensures return visits and a hardcore following. The takeaway menu…
731–735 Great Western Road,
A strange blend of your granddad's local, your parents' favourite beer garden and your wee sister's late-night club of choice, the Òran Mór also wears a rather fetching entertainment venue hat. A stalwart of the Celtic Connections festival, it is also…
189 Byres Road,
Hard to miss, with its large windows and metallic signage, the Byres Road branch of Tinderbox has been plying its brand of metro-chic coffee house style for over 15 years now – and it’s still the business. Aside from a set of thin new booths along the…