the butterfly and the pig, Glasgow


the butterfly and the pig

151 Bath Street Glasgow G2 4SQ

0141 221 7711


The Bill

Starters  £5.85 - £7.85 | Mains £13.95 - £24.95

Desserts £6.00

The Score

Cooking  5.5/10 | Service 2.5/5

Flavour  4/5 | Value 5/5

TOTAL 17/25

If you are experiencing a feeling of déja vu (or, more accurately, déja lit) your brain isn't playing tricks. Almost one year ago to the day I wrote about a dismal lunch experience in Glasgow. To brighten up the depressing content, I devoted half of the column to this place where today's lunch companion and I had met for an apéritif.

Now some might find the eccentricity forced and embarrassing. Others, like me, are happy to indulge in a mild chuckle and go with the flow. After the second reading of the menu, you'll either disregard the daftness or just leave, never to return.

If you know no better, you might think this shabby chic look was something thrown together by some happy amateurs translating a passion into practice. Think again. And look at the detail. The loos have wall tiles featuring a butterfly and a pig. You don't pick these up in a junk shop. The brains behind this outfit is Michele Pagliocca, a 35 year veteran of the Glasgow hospitality scene. It's astonishing to realise that this happy accident of a place has been here since 2005. There is now a sister establishment in Shawlands.

We were here for the food, of course, but there is a pub, a tearoom (better than the GBBO, they claim), function rooms and, I think, an adjacent club. Such places open after my bedtime, so I can't swear to it.

If you cut through the amiable BS that comprises most of the menu, you realise, or should realise, that you're here for pub food. Pub food, that is, made on the premises, not (as far as I can see) brought to the place in giant refrigerated lorries. Their menu changes seasonally, but the classics are always there; however, I feared they had gone full Captain Sensible when I read about the soups. Smoked bacon, leek and barley soup. How dull, then I read on. de loop. Well, almost sensible. Mr C ordered this from Laura, or possibly her colleague Lauren. Instead he was brought the positively prosaic Roast pepper, tomato and chilli soup. Both, incidentally costing 5 whole pounds 85 peenies for all our soup and bread n butter too. I don't know. The menu writer is going hard in the head. Good soup, by the way.

But the fellow reverted to type with my starter. Cilla black is black in black in a pudding with salad, apples, bacon contains black pudden and topped with parmesan. While a student of précis could improve on this, I'm not sure a cook could. Good quality bacon and black pud. These two can be hard enough to find as individuals, never mind as a duo.

Hereon in I'll spare you the menu verbals. To my astonishment, Mr C the pie man went for the chicken one, even though it had no base or sides. Tasty, but a little runny, and a wee bit short on substance. My steak pie, on the other hand, contained a huge quantity of beef of the right quality for a pie, perfectly cooked. Lots of crispy, but not too crispy pastry, and a half ton of proper mash to mop up all the gravy. Texture and vitamins from the nicely al dente veg.

The food bill was just over 45 quid. The fact that we paid more than that can be blamed on the wine list. It's not a starry food destination, nor does it proclaim to be so. As with many (but by no means all) things in life, my advice would be, try it. You might quite like it.



  1. Janet Hood on 24th November 2023 at 5:20 pm

    Oh looks good fun – last time I was there possibly 10 years ago I went for a dance with Frank Murphy and others from the amazing fab whisky bar the Pot Still, Hope Street – disco was great fun

  2. Tahira on 24th November 2023 at 6:25 pm

    It’s my go to for an afternoon tea when that’s needed!

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