I have a list of restaurants that I want to try in Glasgow. In fact, I have a list of places that includes restaurants that I’ve been to before that I want to write about on here that I’ve raved to my friends about. As you can imagine, there’s not a small number of places on it but it gives me a feeling of satisfaction to cross one off. I love to tell people about places that I’ve enjoyed – my dad does this too & I think I’ve inherited his inability to keep information like this to myself. Out of all the restaurants in Glasgow the one that I rave about the most is La Lanterna on Hope Street. I love the place and hardly anyone my age seems to know about it so I spread the word. All the time!
It’s a cosy restaurant tucked down some stairs with old fashioned décor and white tablecloths. It’s a traditional Italian that makes their own ravioli & tiramisu instead of buying it in and closes on a Sunday. They recently won Scotland’s Best Italian Restaurant at the Scottish Entertainment awards & last year they won Best Italian Restaurant at The Glasgow Restaurant Awards so I am not the only person who has noticed how good they are. On a personal note, La Lanterna has lots of happy memories for me – many family gatherings, engagement celebrations, honeymoon choosing & anniversary dinners have taken place here.
As soon as we sat down we were brought over our free glass of fizz that they give you if you book online via their website. We took ages looking at the menu – everything sounds nice and it is a big menu so difficult to decide. The complimentary bread and butter arrived to stave off hunger so we could take our time. Eventually we decided on starter pastas and then the chateaubriand (it costs the same as two steaks and is always to die for).
Mr S went for the spaghetti with king prawns & lobster tail in white wine & cream sauce (£7.95). For a starter portion they were very generous with the lobster meat & prawns, and the sauce bound the dish together without being overpowering or cloying.
I chose the venison ravioli in a red wine & rosemary jus (£7.95). Almost every time I go to La Lanterna I have ravioli of some description because it is always tasty. I can vouch for three of the ravioli flavours on the main menu too, having only missed out on the goats cheese one because I don’t eat goats cheese. There are only a few restaurants in Glasgow that I know of that make their own ravioli so I like to take advantage of it when I can. This visit was no different – perfectly cooked pasta parcels with a rich, meaty filling. Luckily I saved a piece of bread to mop up the leftover jus.
I was so distracted by the ravioli that I forgot to take a photo at the start so apologies for the messy, part-eaten photo.
We asked Chris (the owner) about which red wine would suit the chateaubriand and he recommended the Nero Di Troia, which went perfectly. The wine list is as extensive as the menu, ranges from £14.95 to £195 a bottle and has a whopping 35 reds to choose from – the staff have always been helpful in assisting us in what to choose.
The chateaubriand arrived at the table on a big platter and is served in front of you. It comes with mushrooms, tomatoes, leaves, sauté potatoes & a generous boat of red wine and meat juice gravy. The meat was melt in the mouth and the gravy was rich – this really is a sublime dish. The sauté potatoes are crunchy but I notice that they do chunky chips and potato purée with a few other dishes so I must ask for one of them next time to try for variation.
At this point we usually have tiramisu – it is made in house & is my favourite in Glasgow – but decided to share the cheesecake (£4.95) this time. I’m glad we did because it was creamy but fresh with the strawberries and as good as the tiramisu.
La Lanterna will remain to be one of my Glasgow favourites for the foreseeable future and I look forward to more happy memories.
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