I often find that many of the bars in Israel lack a certain sense of character, the menus are the same, they offer the same every day beers on tap (Heineken, Tuborg, Goldstar and the occasional Leffe or Stella), feature similar decor and even the same play list. Nevertheless, it's always exciting when a new pub opens its doors in the neighborhood. Perhaps this time it will be different. Needless to say, I was excited quite excited to hear that Tamar and her husband Shalom decided to open a Scottish style pub in the heart of Jerusalem (yes, Scottish NOT Irish).
One of the first things that struck us when we entered the pub was the plaid wallpaper and heavy wooden furniture. The décor is simplistic, yet warm, homey; and with Manchester United up 1:0 (oh, I forgot to mention the big flat screen TV) it was high time for a chilled beer.
At Glasgow, the menu is comprised of various dishes with an emphasis on Scottish cuisine. But before I describe the food, I would like to dedicate a couple of sentences to the alcohol selection. First, draft beers – Glasgow offers Tuborg, Guinness, Stella, Leffe Brown as well as an assortment of quality imported bottled cold ones. They are also the only pub in Jerusalem offering the Scottish Belhaven ale; this thick red beer is poured slow, the same way one would pour a pint of Guinness. While my partner was a big Guinness fan I enjoyed the smooth and slightly sweeter characteristics of the Scottish ale. The bar also offers a wide range of fine single malt and blended scotch.
When the game reached half time we decided that it was time to sample some of the Scottish comfort food on the menu. We started off with the Sheppard’s pie, seasoned minced meat topped with a generous layer of golden mashed potatoes and than baked in a clay pot. Instantly, the dish was declared a winner. The meat and puree were seasoned properly and all that we had to do was to let it cool down a bit and dig in. We also enjoyed the beef in Guinness stew topped with a phyllo crust - now this is proper comfort food! The meat literally melted in our mouths and the beer broth gave off an intoxicating aroma.
Although there is nothing Scottish about it, we also decided to share a rib eye steak. The dish was served on a wooden cutting board along side small mounds of kosher salt, fresh black pepper and hash-browns. Although it was evident that the meat was of relatively high quality (especially compared to other bars), unfortunately our steak was over-cooked and dry. Next time I'll be sure to order it medium rear.
Of course, every bar has to have a “Happy Hour” – every day between the hours of 18:00-21:00, Glasgow offers all draft beers for NIS17 and a combo of Sheppard’s pie & a pint for NIS 50.
In addition, every Friday afternoon Glasgow invites customers to stop by and enjoy a traditional Scottish jam session, so iron your kilts and stop by.
11 Shlomzion, Jerusalem