Actually within Glasgow Central Station in its old cellars, with an arched ceiling in the main dining area, bare white walls, marble and blue lighting, Alston Bar & Beef was one of Glasgow's most on-trend 2014 debuts. It's a bar as a well as a restaurant, big on gin and cocktails, although the venue's name tells you all you need to know. Aside from the house burger, made from rump aged for 35 days, steak is the big thing with all meat coming from crossbreed cattle in the Scottish Borders – Aberdeen Angus and Limousin – grass fed then dry aged for at least 35 days. Standard cuts are D-rump, fillet, rib-eye and sirloin; the bone-in rib and the club steak are bigger while you could also choose an assiette of assorted steaks or a porterhouse. Your vegetarian friend will be having the pea and roquefort risotto.
In Glasgow, the seasons change and the colours change but there is always something new. In the city where Michelin star cooking never really took hold and gastronomia molecular bounced off the upper atmosphere (propelled in no small part by the city's love of its excellent cheap eats), the latest restaurant fashion is among the oldest of dishes. It comes courtesy of investment in kitchen equipment, it comes with a sense of fun, it comes in polite surroundings and it comes on a wooden board in premises with bare stone walls – but it comes.
In 2013 and 2014, half a dozen new venues opened across Glasgow, all making a big deal of their beef. They joined more established restaurants where you can depend on a top class steak – the Butchershop Bar & Grill, the Grill Room at the Square and the Restaurant at Blythswood Square for example – to give local diners more choice than ever before in terms of where and how they eat their meat. It's not all fillet and sirloin of course – other dishes are available.