The Black Dove, Shawlands

29 June 2017

One of the things I often say to people who are visiting Glasgow for the first time is that Glasgow isn't just what lies in Glasgow City Centre. In Edinburgh you get off at Waverely Station, you go out the back for the old town and out the front for the newer areas and nothing is more than a ten minute walk from the station. Glasgow's not the same. If you get off the train at Glasgow Central you'll see Glasgow Central and that's about it - by 'Central' I mean pretty much Buchanan Street, down from that the 'centre' part of Argyle Street and up from Buchanan lies Sauchiehall Street. Walk slightly further across and you can get to Merchant City but past that... you're looking at the transport system again, because Glasgow is spread out and has multiple pockets dotted all over the place, each with their own vibes.

The subway can take you round a lot of it - take it to Hillhead for the charity shops, my old uni, Ashton Lane, and a multitude of eateries or visit my beloved Kelvingrove via the Kelvinhall stop. That's probably also your best stop if you're looking to explore Finnieston's legendary food and drink options. If it's the Transport Museum you're looking for you want to get off at Govan and then take the ferry, or if it's Scotland Street School Museum it's Shields Road. Where the subway doesn't take you though, is Glasgow's thriving South Side. For Kilmarnock Road's array of options you want to take the train to Pollockshaws East (not Shawlands, despite the fact that Kilmarnock Road's establishments would explain their location as being in Shawlands!) You get what I'm saying here? Edinburgh is 100% simpler for the tourist who wants to stay centrally and not have to travel too much, but Glasgow, if you woo her, work hard for it (i.e. tire your feet out and explore her, has a tonne to give back that often goes quite unseen by those not in the know.

Today, I'm asking you to board to the train with me and check out The Black Dove, which is in Shawlands (but we're taking the train to Pollockshaws East - stay with me here people!) Shawlands is, as an area, young and trendy. There's lots of pubs and bars and lots of cool eateries, but The Black Dove's aim is to bring something a little bit different to the scene. This is communal, small plate eating with fine dining dishes. Tapas essentially, but not the Spanish tapas we might be used to.

On the day of the blogger event I was sent through our menu for the evening and practically salivated at my desk. Almost all the options I'd been excited by on the main menu were on there (though I will be going back to try the scallops and the crab!) and I couldn't wait. I arrived with a rumbling tummy, fully ready to dive in to the endless selection and we were started off with the Pork Belly Scotch Egg, accompanied by Chorizo Jam. 

Now straight away I was slightly worried here - because this was amazing. I genuinely couldn't envision any of the other courses even remotely living up to it. The outside was crispy but not hard, the inside was soft but not runny and the chorizo jam was smokey and sweet at the same time. 100% would recommend and will definitely order this again when I return.

Next up was the Ox Cheek 'Steak Pie' - and instantly all my worries about how anything else would top the Scotch egg were totally put to one side. This was so good. The pastry was phenomenal, the potatoes were creamy but not sickly or wet and the meat was perfect. I would give anything to be eating this right now as I sit at my desk typing this!

After the ox cheek there was a baked hake fillet which came with a mussel and potato risotto. I really, really liked the risotto - in which the potato flakes replaced the rice. I did hear a few people say they weren't keen on the texture of a potato risotto as opposed to a rice one so that might be something to bear in mind, but it didn't bother me. I'm usually a massive fish lover so surprisingly this doesn't make the list of things I'd rush to order on my return - but I think I was so into the chorizo and the crunch of the Scotch egg, followed by the pastry and ox cheek that maybe a switch to fish just wasn't what I was in the mood for. There was nothing wrong with it but I'd say it was probably my least favourite of the night. 

Back to red meat and the next course was a Beef Rendang. Not my favourite, but I still enjoyed it. 
And from the two dishes I've in a very sophisticated, discerning food blogger way proclaimed were not my favourites I'm afraid it's now back to the gushing about this lamb dish. Braised lamb belly, potato presse, puy lentils and pickled beetroot gel. I can't even begin to explain how good this was. The meat was phenomenal (as it had been with all the dishes - The Black Dove pride themselves on freshness of ingredients and that totally comes through. They do warn on their website that their menu may be reduced on Sundays due to the lack of availability of fresh ingredients on a Sunday though, so that may be something to bear in mind, but I'd rather see that on their website than a compromise on their approach to food and the importance of fresh ingredients!) This was 100% my favourite dish of the night and I will definitely be ordering it on my return! By the time this came out it was quite late and the lighting wasn't great so I promise when I go back I'll get a better picture of it to share with you all, because this dish really deserves to be shown off.

I was so stuffed by this point that I didn't think I really could appreciate the desserts so I sat most of them out, but I couldn't resist a try at the cheesecake and the beautifully presented French Martini.
The cheesecake was tarte and sour and delicious. The sweetness of the honeycomb cut through it a little bit, but overall this isn't one for those of you who like a seriously sweet dessert - for that you'd want The French Martini. Pineapple compote, pineapple set custard, vanilla sponge, and raspberry foam. I tried one spoonful of this and it was gorgeous but a little too sweet for me to manage much than a few spoons of, but then that's the beauty of this type of dining - you can order a few desserts between you and try them all. Though, to be honest, these were big enough that each individual dessert could happily satisfy one person, whereas the main courses were portion sized so that you could order quite a few - we had 5 plates between 2 of us at the event and that left us all full (or at least it definitely left me full!) whereas I don't think 5 desserts would be manageable even between 2 people, so order with caution when it comes to dessert!

I think it's probably clear from what I've said here about what I'll be ordering on my next visit that not only would I highly, wholeheartedly recommend The Black Dove to you, it's also entered my list of my personal favourite restaurants in Glasgow. Whilst sitting in the event I was WhatsApp-ing phone photos of my food to my friends like 'we need to come here', and I've picked The Black Dove as being the setting for my family dinner for my birthday in a few weeks. I can't praise it highly enough, and it's 100% worth that train journey... I promise!

You can find The Black Dove website here, Facebook page here, Instagram here and Twitter here. Most importantly you can find the restaurant itself at 67 Kilmarnock Road, Shawlands, G41 3YR. 

Join the conversation!

  1. Very good quality of clothes, accessories and shoes best charity to donate! The employees are very kind and helpful also. I love this store! I'm considering of selling to them again. They're very reasonable with their pricing, esp. when you need some fast cash. Definitely will recommend to others!!!!!!best charity to donate

  2. Very good quality of clothes, accessories and shoes best charity to donate! The employees are very kind and helpful also. I love this store! I'm considering of selling to them again. They're very reasonable with their pricing, esp. when you need some fast cash. Definitely will recommend to others!!!!!!best charity to donate


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