Sharing Plates at Ox & Finch, Glasgow

Ox & Finch, Glasgow, Sharing Plates, Food Bloggers, Menu, Cocktail,
I took to Twitter to ask for recommendations of restaurants in Glasgow for our first night in Scotland, completely oblivious to the fact it was Father’s Day. Then there was no doubt in mind, I wanted to go somewhere fairly special and treat Ash and Alfie to dinner. Ox & Finch came recommended by two of my followers, so I booked a table for 6pm, coinciding with Alfie’s routine and early enough not to disturb other diners. The draws were a children’s menu, some delicious-sounding cocktails and reasonably-priced food.

The menu at Ox & Finch is based upon sharing plates and while the menu was sort-of split into the usual sections: nibbles, starters, mains and desserts, you weren’t required to order from specific sections of the menu and could order as much or as little as you wanted. Our waitress recommended 2-3 plates per person and we spent ages deciding what to have!

The restaurant really was a bit of me, not only were the cocktails bespoke to the restaurant, but I love tapas and there’s nothing more enjoyable than ordering lots of different plates of food to share and get a taste of everything. Craft platters are pretty big in the restaurant world at the minute, so I can’t be the only one who loves the sharing concept! Ash on the other hand was a bit dubious, he much prefers ordering his own food and initially he thought it was going to be like tapas, something he doesn’t like in the UK as it’s never done right. He didn’t really get the menu or the concept, but by the end, he had a good time and enjoyed the food – so the evening wasn’t totally ruined! The plates arrived to the table one at a time – but, what did we order?Ox & Finch, Glasgow, Sharing Plates, Food Bloggers, Asparagus & Crab,
Asparagus, brown crab, dill oil and cured egg yolk (£11)
What a vibrant dish. The mix of asparagus, crab and dill was so fresh. The asparagus spears still had a crunch, which was nice; while the crab was delicious (although we were definitely missing some bread to mop up the excess and dill oil). Beautifully presented and simple food done well, this really set the tone for the rest of the dining experience.
Ox & Finch, Glasgow, Sharing Plates, Food Bloggers, Salt & Pepper Squid,
Salt & pink pepper squid, orange, chilli and saffron aioli (£9.50)
I adore squid, but it’s so easy to get wrong. The flavours here worked so nicely and the salt & pepper wasn’t too much for me. The sweetness of the orange cooled down the heat from the fresh chilli; while the squid was battered and cooked beautifully.
Ox & Finch, Glasgow, Sharing Plates, Food Bloggers, Pork Belly & Chips with Romesco sauce
Pork belly, tenderstem broccoli, romesco and smoked almonds (£8.50)
Chips with roast garlic aioli (£3.95)
I was in too much of a rush to dig in, so no photos of the original plate. Ordering chips to go with the pork was a great shout and these were so chunky, but fluffy. The aioli wasn’t too overpowering, so actually complemented the pork and romesco sauce. The pork was tender and wasn’t too fatty, either. The broccoli was too al dente for me, but it was a delicious dish, nonetheless. Even Alfie was dipping his fingers in the romesco sauce, trying to eat chopped almonds!
Ox & Finch, Glasgow, Sharing Plates, Food Bloggers, Yellow Duck Curry, Crispy Rice
Confit duck leg, yellow curry, Thai basil and crispy rice (£9.00)
The highlight of our meal. I never order yellow curries and very rarely order duck, opting for beef or chicken. This was easy to split, with the duck falling off the bone. I’d never had crispy rice before, it was interesting and something I’d love to have again. We were in agreement this was the best dish. The curry was aromatic enough, but the Thai basil and red chilli certainly upped the flavour stakes!
Ox & Finch, Glasgow, Sharing Plates, Food Bloggers, Desserts, Chocolate & Coconut, Strawberries & Custard with Shortbread,
Lemon verbena custard, strawberries and shortcake (£6.00)
I chose this dessert and it was better than I had envisaged. There were fresh chopped strawberries, a sort-of strawberry granita; a light and creamy crème pât, super-sweet and crumbly mini shortbread rounds, lemon gel and verbena leaves. It really was summer on a plate and I loved it. There’s no doubt I could have easily not shared this one and demolished the lot!

Dark chocolate crémeux, coconut frangipane and coconut ice cream (£6.00)
Ash picked this dessert, which was extremely rich but a decadent way to end our feast. The chocolate shards and nibs added texture, to an otherwise soft and creamy dish. The ice cream was amazing and the coconut really worked in the frangipane. I’m glad we were sharing as there’s no way I’d have eaten the whole plate... but even Alfie wanted in on the action.

The cocktail list was great too. I ordered the blueberry bramble (tanqueray gin, blueberries and lime), but I wish I’d sampled some of the other drinks on offer – after all, there were only six to choose from. The raspberry prosecco float was tempting and had I not been so full after the desserts, I’d have ordered the coffee n cherry, which would have been the perfect digestif.

The meal came to about £75, which was reasonable for the number of dishes and the quality of food. Ox & Finch is definitely up there with one of the best meals and overall experiences I’ve had and it genuinely rivals that of a Michelin-starred restaurant (although they have been awarded a Bib Gourmand).

If you have toddlers or young children, I’d recommend leaving them at home as while there is a children’s menu (and Alfie was given colouring to do), it’s such a nice place and much more suited to a romantic date night, or a group of friends wishing to catch up over cocktails and good food. I’d certainly head back to Ox & Finch if I was in the city again... there are those cocktails (and so many other dishes) with my name on.

Love, Lucy xx

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