Welcome to the 5pm blog

Food news, Scottish restaurant news, offers and promotions and general musings

Subscribe to RSS

If you enjoy the blog, make sure you subscribe to the RSS feed.

Archive for the ‘News’ Category

Take a #ChefSelfie for a chance to win a £50 voucher!

5pm is taking over the streets!

Over the course of this week, our 5pm chefs will be out on the streets letting Glaswegians and tourists know just how great 5pm is.

And we're encouraging our loyal customers to join in the fun by running a #ChefSelfie competition - where you could win a £50 voucher for 5pm!

5pm Chefs

Keep your eyes peeled for our 5pm chefs in Glasgow City Centre around George Square and Central Station as well as Finnieston.

Go up, say hello, and ask them to pose for a selfie, like this one below.


Post the selfie to our 5pm.co.uk Facebook page, tweet it to @5pm, or e mail it to marketing@5pm.co.uk.

£50 voucher

We'll be picking a favourite selfie every day - and each daily winner will win a £50 voucher for 5pm!

So what are you waiting for? Head into Glasgow City Centre and see if you can see our 5pm chefs' hats bobbing around in the distance.

And make sure it's a good selfie!


One Ten Bar and Grill tries on a new number

Our old friend, the deep-fried Mars Bar.

Our old friend, the deep-fried Mars Bar.

Being observant sorts, it has not escaped the attention of the 5pm Dining blog that Many a Glasgow bar and restaurant has used the Commonwealth Games as a sound reason to have a bit of a facelift.

The One Ten Bar and Grill is no different.

The Bath Street venue has just launched a new look along with new menus and a new food and beverage team, headed up by James Anderson, formerly of the Grand Central Hotel and Cameron House.

Scottish flavours

Alongside the cosy booths and snazzy light fittings, the new menus have a definite Scottish flavour. The Wee Taste of Scotland starter is a mix of Scottish-style tapas such as a haggis fritter, mini Scotch pie and smoked salmon with Arran mustard.

Main courses on offer include Lathallan haggis, neeps and tatties with a whisky cream sauce or the venison sausages with a creamy mash.

Parfait or Mars Bar?

The desserts are just as Caledonian. Diners can opt for the classy option of Drambuie parfait with raspberry compote or the more earthy choice of deep-fried Mars Bar with a raspberry sorbet.

Rated a very tasty 4.1/5 by some 400 or so 5pm customers, it seems as though One Ten is already half way towards a podium place on Glasgow's dining scene.

110 Bar and Grill is looking good.

One Ten Bar and Grill is looking good.

Loadsa new openings in Aberdeen

Continuing our catch-up on all the new restaurant/bar openings in the last couple of weeks, the good people of Aberdeenshire have seen their dining choices widen considerably of late.

This week, Thaikhun opened in the city's Union Square. Thaikhun is an offshoot of the popular Chaophraya brand which already has branches in Glasgow and Edinburgh.

Thai street food is the bedrock of the Thaikhun menu.

Thai street food is the bedrock of the Thaikhun menu.

While Chaophraya is a bit dressed up, likes to party and tends towards more formal dining, Thaikhun is inspired by Thai street food and is that little bit more laidback; not to mention cheaper.

You can see the menu here.

What's the yap on the DogTap?

Meanwhile, in Ellon, the ever industrious BrewDog boys have opened the doors to DogTap, the tap-room in their headquarters.

The new opening is their 15th UK bar and the 20th which the firm have opened worldwide.

As well as having ten BrewDog beers on tap, the DogTap will also incorporate a BottleDog where customers can buy BrewDog beers fresh off the bottling line.

DogTap's chandelier is made from BrewDog bottles.

DogTap's chandelier is made from BrewDog bottles.

The visitor centre will operate brewery tours on a booking system. Visitors will need to email dogtap@brewdog.com to book a brewery tour or beer tasting session.

Hot on the heels of DogTap, the brewery is already looking at a second bar location in Glasgow as well as in Brighton, Liverpool and Cardiff. Outside of the UK, BrewDog has plans for bars in Rome, Bologna, Helsinki and Berlin.

Bottlecap Bar and Brewery

Finally, we're keeping an eye on the Bottlecap Bar and Brewery which is taking shape on Aberdeen's Littlejohn Street. A new bar with a working brewery under the same roof, the new venture is scheduled to open officially in August.

More news as we have it.

Loadsa new restaurants

This 5pm Dining blog scribbler has been elsewhere for the last couple of weeks.

One result of this is that we have an inbox stuffed with new openings and other exciting developments which will pique the appetite of those who live to scoff.

Over the next couple of days, we'll do a quick run through of all the newbies.

Marco Pierre White: soon to be making an appearance in Glasgow.

Marco Pierre White: soon to be making an appearance in Glasgow.

First up, Marco Pierre white is to open one of his steakhouses in Glasgow’s Hotel Indigo in late August.

Marco Pierre White Steakhouse Bar & Grill will be situated on the ground floor of the hotel and will be open for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Marco Pierre White said: ‘It’s been a long time in the planning, but I’m absolutely delighted to open my first city centre restaurant in Glasgow – a city that I love.

Vibrant dining scene

‘Glasgow has a vibrant dining scene and I look forward to offering Glaswegians a taste of something a little bit different; my recipe for “affordable glamour” which is all about serving quality food at affordable prices. It isn’t about Michelin standard food, which for most is experienced as a one-off or for a very special occasion.

‘The Steakhouse Bar & Grill will cater for different budgets with a very reasonably set-priced menu to our delicious steaks which will sit at the higher price range of the menu. I truly hope the restaurant will be a place for restaurant goers to return again and again.’

Paradise Palms is a new venue that aims to light up Edinburgh's nights.

Paradise Palms is a new venue that aims to light up Edinburgh's nights.

In other news, the blog is kicking itself at missing last week's launch party for The Paradise Palms on Edinburgh's Lothian Street.

Late night kicks

Located opposite Bristo Square, the new venture bills itself as a 'dive bar', diner and cabaret-led events venue.

Tacos, ribs, burgers and cocktails will keep the body and soul together while DJs such as Frankie Sumatra, Tall Paul and Trendy Wendy will be wrangling the decks from 9pm each evening.

Paradise Palms: the owners aren't big on minimalism.

Paradise Palms: the owners aren't big on minimalism.


New openings in Glasgow

Glasgow is about to get Mess-y.

Glasgow is about to get Mess-y.

Thanks to the eagle eyes of the contributors to Yelp's excellent new places thread, we can tell you that Mess Cantina is expanding from its original base in East Kilbride and opening a branch on Glasgow's Otago Street.

As the name suggests, Tex Mex is on the menu here with chilli con carne, nachos and pulled pork fighting for attention with wings and slow cooked ribs.

The new branch is taking shape in the former Skinny's site.

Scotland's first Bill's?

We're much less certain about this one but we hear rumours that Scotland is going to get its first Bill's on West Nile Street.

Named after its founder Bill Collison, Bill's is a chain of rather quirky cafe restaurants and shops selling everything from Bill's Red Wine to Bill's Red Onion Chutney.

Open from 'breakfast to bedtime', the menus range from porridge to 28-day aged sirloin steaks.

We also see that Giraffe have opened a new branch in the massive Tesco at Silverburn.

Topolobamba takes off

Mezcal and tequila will be on the menu at Topolobamba.

Mezcal and tequila will be on the menu at Topolobamba.

All being well, the highly anticipated Topolobamba on Glasgow’s St Vincent Street should open to the public this Wednesday.

Rather than being a vaguely Tex Mex joint, Topolobamba is aiming to serve genuine Mexican street food with recipes taken from the country’s four main culinary regions.

Canteen and bar

Billed as a canteen and bar, the venture is aiming to be as authentic as possible and will be importing key ingredients from the North American country.

A sneak peek at the menu shows that it is certainly a long way from a box standard Mexican.

Tequila-basted prawns

Dishes which jump out include the tamales stuffed with barbacoa beef or Yucatan pork; grilled prawns basted in Agave tequila and chilli; taquitos filled with tangy cactus and marinated chicken plus a baked fish of the day served with a chilli red mole.

While not a tapas restaurant, Topolobamba will be serving smaller portions so that diners can try two or three dishes a visit.

Topolobamba has been taking shape over the last few months.

Topolobamba has been taking shape over the last few months.

Amber gambler?

A fun touch is the traffic light system on the bar which will indicate how hot the chilli is on that particular day.

Customers will be welcome to pop in for a margarita, tequila or Mexican beer. Tortilla chips and bowls of salsa on the bar will help encourage drinkers through the door.

Given the boom in authentic Latin American restaurants in London, it is interesting to see a team try to develop a similar concept in Glasgow.

With the Commonwealth Games just around the corner, Topolobamba couldn’t have picked a better time to launch a new venture.

Caffe Contini sneak peek

Plans for the third floor restaurant at Contini Caffe.

Plans for Contini Caffe are taking shape.

As we noted on the 5pm Dining blog back in June, Victor and Carina Contini are planning to extend their Edinburgh empire with the opening of a third outlet towards the end of July.

Contini Caffe is taking shape in Cannonball House on the Royal Mile. The new venture will join Contini Ristorante on George Street and The Scottish Cafe & Restaurant at the Scottish National Gallery on The Mound.

The exact details have still to be worked out but these sneak peek images give a reasonable indication of what the final manifestation of Contini Caffe will look like.

An ice cream counter features in the plans for Contini Caffe.

An ice cream counter features in the plans for Contini Caffe.

Spread over three floors, the new venture will include a porridge bar and Italian gelateria, or ice cream bar, on the ground floor.

A cafe/takeaway serving light bites and gourmet sarnies is being set up on the first floor.

On the third floor, diners can look forward to a top notch restaurant. Apparently, the views to Edinburgh castle are superb.

A possible version of the third floor restaurant.

A possible version of the third floor restaurant.



A perfect morning at One Square, Edinburgh Sheraton Hotel & Spa

When Edinburgh's Sheraton Hotel & Spa invited us along to their Festival Square hotel for a gin afternoon tea, they had us at gin and afternoon tea.

The hotel wished to show off their summer take on the classic British afternoon tea, which will be served with the tipple until the end of August, paying homage to the hotel bar's collection of 52 gins.

The Sheraton also said they had a surprise treat for us at lunchtime. More on that later.

First we paid a visit to the Sheraton's One Square Bar to learn more about their gin collection.

Gin collection

When it comes to gin, there's little One Square Bar Manager Hugh Gibb doesn't know about the subject.

As he showed us the bar's gin collection, his knowledge and passion for the spirit shone through.

"At the moment we stock 52 gins but the numbers constantly change. It's always a considered collection," he said.

"We try and stock as many different types as possible, gins from different regions, gins with different methods of distillation."

"Cocktail bar tenders like to experiment. Creating things that haven't been made before is what they live for and gin is the perfect base spirit to do that with because of the amount of botanicals."

"It's such a good spirit because there is something for everyone and there are lots of different types. If you are not a huge gin fan immediately, it's not that you don't like gin; you just haven't found the one you like yet."

Learn more about gin from Hugh in the video below.

Afternoon tea

Next we headed into One Square's dining area to experience their Bloom gin afternoon tea.

One Square are well known for their themed afternoon teas, with previous examples being Wimbledon and Christmas themed afternoon teas.

The Bloom gin afternoon tea will run all summer and include the traditional cakes and sandwiches with a gin themed twist.

Example dishes include heather honey glazed ham sandwich with a bloom gin jelly and strawberry macaroons accompanied by a little tube filled with Bloom gin to squeeze inside.

The tea is served with a Bloom gin cocktail.

Watch chef Craig Hart talk about the Bloom gin afternoon tea in the video below.

Dining on the pass

After we tucked into the delicious afternoon tea, staff at the Sheraton led us down to the kitchen for an exclusive behind the scenes look at how the hotel prepares five star food for its guests.

The recently redone kitchen was nothing short of spectacular. Gleaming silver surfaces and the latest hi tech equipment, it was the most impressive restaurant kitchen we've ever seen.

It was then One Square told us we would be eating our five course lunch right there on the kitchen pass; as chef Craig prepared the dishes before our very eyes.

Craig quickly got to work preparing our first course; a pineapple carpaccio served with rocket, ox spring ham and parmesan.

Things heated up with the hearty butternut squash served with coriander, apple and a melt in your mouth goat's cheese ball which was dropped in the centre of the soup.

The main course was fresh turbot served with parmieter potatoes, tomato and asparagus. As I'm a vegetarian I was treated to stuffed globe artichoke instead which was simply outstanding.

Watch Craig prepare the turbot on the pass in the video below.

Dessert was a gin and tonic sorbet and jelly encased in a sugar case. It was a little strange to slurp on a gin and tonic flavoured sorbet but definitely strange in a good way.

Our tummies filled with delicious food, we thanked the Sheraton for their hospitality. But little did we know they had another treat to come.

Dessert on the pass

First chef Craig cleared away our plates and cleaned the surface of the pass until it was spotless.

He then brought out some vanilla, mango, raspberry and chocolate, sauces which he sprayed on a circle on the surface.

He began to scatter honeycomb, chocolate, raspberry crumble, blueberries, pistachio crisps, violets, dried strawberries, biscotti and dried oranges.

It was then we realised this was going to be our second dessert which we would be eating right from the pass! It looked delicious enough at this point but there was one final flourish.

Chef Craig disappeared into the back and came out clutching a chocolate egg which he lifted high and dropped it leading it to explode all over the pass.

We were then given a spoon and told to tuck in!

Craig told us no one who has dined at the pass has ever finished the dessert and try as we might to scoop up every morsel of chocolate, marshmallow, fruit and cream, we simply couldn't manage it all.

Watch Craig prepare dessert on the pass in the video below.

We left the Sheraton hotel stuffed but happy after an extremely enjoyable day.

Dining on the pass was truly memorable and like nothing we had experienced in a restaurant before.

A fine dining meal in an unforgettable setting.

£23 for the Bloom gin afternoon tea, £16 for two courses from the chet's set menu and £29 for the Sunday buffet plus jazz entertainment at One Square within the Sheraton Hotel when booking on 5pm.co.uk.
You can watch each fantastic course we ate in our YouTube playlist below.

5 must-try Japanese dishes from YummyTori

Lovers of Japanese food must give YummyTori on Edinburgh's Lothian Road a try.

It adds a different spin to the cuisine by specialising in Japanese tapas and we've picked some of our favourites below.

Yakiniku beef

Yakiniku beef

Yakiniku beef

This uses the chef's very own special recipe for the black pepper sauce which coats the tender and thinly sliced beef.

Wasabi prawns

Wasabi prawns

Wasabi prawns

Again the chef's own recipe for wasabi sauce is used as a sauce for the crispy battered prawns offering a delicious bite to the seafood.

Teppan gyoza

Gyoza dumplings

Gyoza dumplings

Comforting and homely, the teppan gyoza dumplings are pan steamed parcels of goodness with aromatic, succulent pork and vegetables.

Salmon tataki

Salmon tataki

Salmon tataki

Fish fans should give the salmon tataki a try. The salmon is cured and flash seared then drizzled with a  fresh citrusy ponzu vinagrette.

Daily selection of sushi



Finally, YummyTori change their sushi selection daily and it's definitely worth checking out what's on the menu.

If these dishes whet your appetite then we've got a number of offers to give it a try on 5pm Dining.

15% a la carte discount or £38 per couple for 6 tapas dishes and a bottle of house wine - menus & booking here

Pommery Champagne at the Tattoo

Edinburgh Military Tattoo takes place against the backdrop of Edinburgh Castle.

Edinburgh Military Tattoo takes place against the backdrop of Edinburgh Castle.

For the fourth year, the Pommery Champagne Cafe Bar is to return to Edinburgh's Signet Library for the duration of the Festival.

The 5pm Dining blog will have a much bigger preview a little closer to the launch day on the 1st of August.

Chocs, drams and cocktails

As always, there are lots of tasty events going on over the month. Not least is a series of Sunday afternoon events in which Annabel Meikle, aka The Whisky Belle, will be introducing small groups of lucky people to the delights of chocolate, whisky and cocktails.

However, before our main preview, here's another little taster snippet to whet the appetite.

The cafe is offering a series of dinner and Tattoo packages. For £75 a head, guests can enjoy a Champagne cocktail and three course meal in the rather magnificent Signet Library before toddling up the road to watch Edinburgh Military Tattoo.

You can view the menu here but a typical main course might be the slow cooked shin of Scottish beef with poached summer vegetables, new potatoes and a gravy of cooking juices.

The tickets are available for Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights. Tickets can be bought from here.

Afternoon tea is always a hit at the Pommery Champagne Cafe Bar.

Afternoon tea is always a hit at the Pommery Champagne Cafe Bar.



Switch to our mobile site