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June 25, 2014

Scotland is widely considered to have one of the best larders in the world.

When we spoke to celebrity chef Jacqueline O’Donnell, head chef of The Sisters and participant in BBC’s The Great British Menu, last month, she spent the entire interview raving about Scotland’s larder. “We are envied worldwide on the quality of food we have here,” Jaqueline said. “We should be absolutely shouting from the rooftops about how good Scotland’s larder is and the local produce we can use.”

With so much fresh food on our doorstep it makes sense for Scottish restaurants to utilise it.

Which is exactly what Glasgow west end restaurants Roastit Bubbly Jocks and Cail Bruich do on their menus every day.

Cail Bruich

For Cail Bruich on Great Western Road, Scotland’s larder doesn’t just compliment their menus – it shapes them.

All their produce is sourced locally and their menus change depending on what they have available.

“Our food is very very product driven and very seasonal,” Chris Charalambous, head chef and owner of Cail Bruich said.

“We get our lamb from Dornoch, our beef from Ayrshire, our chicken and ducks from Gartmorn Farm, our seafood from the west coast. A lot of places buy their products from abroad which is absolutely pointless because we have such good quality produce right on our doorstep.”

“There is a man on the isle of Arran who grows and forages especially for me; he sells it on the island but I’m the only person in the city he delivers to. I’m at his mercy; if he grows something and it’s good, I’ll take it off him then come up with a dish, so it’s a good challenge for me.”

“All our dishes are created around the seasons. We see what we can use, what’s good, what’s available, then we come up with a dish.”

Roastit Bubbly Jocks

You don’t get much fresher than picking wild garlic from the River Kelvin.

That is what the staff at Partick restaurant Roastit Bubbly Jocks had done the week before we chatted to them.

“I discovered a bunch of garlic up just beside the Kelvin so we got a couple of bags and made a wild garlic oil out of it,” Restaurant Manager Lauren Mathers said. “It went in our fish of the day.”

“We’ve just had spring so we’ve had a lot of asparagus and lamb in our dishes.”

“Since the restaurant opened in 2004 its always been very much about seasonal produce. Our owner goes to the market every Wednesday and picks up all our fresh veg for the week. We use the farmers’ market in Partick as well.”

“Our menu includes well known Scottish dishes such as scallops and black pudding as well as Scottish producers like Dingwall haggis and Ramsay’s of Carluke. We do craft Scottish cider and our beer is Scottish as well.”

For more Glasgow West End restaurant stories, check out our Piece of my City page.