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By DiscoverGlasgowOrg, Jun 18 2014 10:53AM

No matter what season it is, sometimes you just want to indulge in a big, juicy burger. We've been sampling many of Glasgow's eateries to find the ultimate desination for burger connoisseurs. In descending order:

Number 5 - Ad Lib

Coming fifth is not a discredit to Ad Lib (there were many, many eatieries that have not placed in this list). The burger's hear are a cut above the standard pub fare, whether you are eating in the City Centre branch on Hope Street or the Merchant Cityone on Ingram Street. What really makes Ad Lib stand out from the crowd is the Monster Burger Challenge, which dares you to devour a 3lb Aberdeen Angus Burger within two hours. SUcceed and you get the meal for free, along with a T-shirt to prove you have the stomach of a glutton.

Number 4 - Bar BLOC+

One of Glasgow's most chilled out bars not only offers regular support to local bands and free gigs to its patrons, but its kitchen also cooks up a really great burger. Not to be missed.

Number 2 and 3 - Burger Meats Bun and Bread Meats Bread

It is almost impossible to choose between Glasgow's two newest burger joints. Despite a bitter rivalry involving the similar names, their menus are very different. Bread Meats Bread is slightly more expansive, but is also more expensive. Burger Meats Bun wins points for serving Gosling's Ginger Beer, but its a basement restaurant so lacks the people watching that the cornerside Bread Meats Bread offers. That location comes at a premium for space though, so you may be queuing for a short while, but good things come to those who wait. Try both, and make your own mind up.

Number 1 - Nice 'N' Sleazys by Meathammer Ltd

Meathammer's burgers are simply the most tasty and inventive this side of the hemisphere (they would be challenged for the crown by Fergburger in Queenstown, New Zealand). From the Murderous Hog to the Behemoth, these burgers will make your mouth water when you read the menu, but leave you feeling very satisfied by the last bite. Meathammer serves out of Nice 'N' Sleazys on Sauchiehall Street, although for any Westenders, they have now expanded to the Record Factory, although you will have to put up with the mob of students residing there.

One to avoid - Cocktail & Burger

While the temptation of 2 for 1 burgers was enough to draw us into the dingy basement restaurant, the age old lesson of quality over quantity was ever present. The burger itself was so-so, but we had to wait 40 minutes for our accompanying fries, while the two waitresses gabbed at the desk. With little apology once the error had been corrected, we swiftly finished our chips and left, never to return.

So there you have it folks. Have you had a tasty burger in somewhere other than the places that we mentioned here? If so, let us know, so we can expand on our list.

By DiscoverGlasgowOrg, Jun 4 2014 03:27PM

Glasgow music label Chemikal Underground has not been shy in its ambitious array of musical projects to celebrate the city's East Side. One of the highlight's of the East End Social's plans was the Duke Street Expo, a low-key all day festival that married singers and bands with local shops for small, intimate sets. Most of the shows were free, with the exception of a pair of gigs held in two of Dennistoun's churches. Yet, despite an ensemble that would make corporate festivals jealous, the Duke Street Expo was without much in the way of advertising, unless you lived local. Perhaps that was the point; after all, how many people could feasibly squeeze into Barnardo's charity shop to watch Beerjacket?

Yet the small, almost unannounced nature of it all offered something more spontaneous. It removed the barriers that modern music culture, and a wider celebrity culture in general, constructs. This was just people who love music listening to a hand-picked selection of artists. There were no egos here, this was no Britain's Got Talent of X-Factor where eveything is commoditised and monetised.

They played for free, and mentioned they had gigs coming up and some limited edition CDs and vinyl with them. Almost all took it in good stride, Beerjacket joking about playing in the cornor of Barnardos, surrounded by coats and jackets. Yusef Asak's haunting tunes were partnered with his deft humour about playing in Heather's Boutique. "I was tempted to put on one of these neon yellow tops for you."

Northumbrian lass Sarah Hayes played in content while two toddlers balwed their eyes out right in front of her piano, dressed with a single red rose from host Florresters. She later had to remind her Admiral Fallow bandmate Louis Abbott of the words to one of theirs songs. Sometimes, you just have those days.

She later had to remind her Admiral Fallow bandmate Louis Abbott of the words to one of theirs songs. Sometimes, you just have those days.

And that was one of the best things about the Duke Street Expo. It wasn't about getting 'mad with it' or 'pissed up' (although kudos to Eletric Artz Tattoo Parlour for the free beer during Ex Wives excellent ear-breaking performance).

It was a family day, and most of the music was enjoyed by all ages. Even rapper Hector Bizerk forewarned about his explicit lyrics.

After King Creosote had finished the last song of the evening, following on from Siobhan Wilson (Ella the Bird) and Hot Chip's Alexis Taylor in the Dennistoun New Parish Church, a friend remarked that it had been an excellent, exhausting day of music, and that it was a shame this sort of thing does not happen as often. I would second that.

To the bands I have not yet mentioned, the excellent Company of Wolves, the awesome Adam Stafford, the energising Kobi Onyame, the sobering Rick Redbeard, and those I did not get to see (Hume Sax Quartet, Kathryn Joseph, Kid Canaveral, Ruth MacKay, Sonny Carntyne, Adam Stearns), you made for a great day out in one of Glasgow's greatest streets. Come back soon.

By DiscoverGlasgowOrg, May 21 2014 10:08AM

One of my hopes for Discover Glasgow was that we would get to hear more from the people of Glasgow about their insights into the city. As the pink banners all over the city say, People Make Glasgow. One of the ways we now do this is through our IN CONVERSATION section, where we ask some locals and those in the know a few questions. Due to some technical issues, we haven't updated it in a while, but with the recent blog launch, it seemed like the ideal opportunity to return a focus to the people of Glasgow. We got in contact with Fay Young, R&D Director at Walking Heads, a great wee app that lets you take audio tours of the city just by using your phone.

DG: Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?

FY: My background is in old media – newspaper journalism and magazines – where I always enjoyed discovering unexpected things about so-called ‘ordinary people’. I like to think new media gives us the chance to discover and celebrate more of those untold stories of extraordinary people. I have also written conventional guidebooks, especially for the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, which taught me that there are fascinating stories lurking behind every tree.

DG: You are in charge of R & D at Walking Heads. Tell us a bit about how the company came to be, and what you do in your role. What inspired the company to create tours around Glasgow?

Like a lot of good ideas, I think it began over a drink or two in the pub, with two other founders of Walking Heads, Dougal Perman and Alan Gibson. We were talking about what makes a good holiday and how you find the real sense of place in any city. Dougal and Alan had recently discovered the Soundmap tour of Brick Lane in London, one of a series of fantastic, evocative audio tours, leading explorers into unlikely places. I particularly remember Irma Kurtz opening a door into a Jewish tailor shop in Soho; you could hear the scissors snipping as she teased out stories. Brilliant stuff. We began to play around with ideas for self-guided interactive tours taking visitors, or locals, off the beaten track. As a result we won a Tourism Innovation Fund Award which meant we had to come up with a fully finished product pretty quickly.

Glasgow’s music scene seemed an obvious choice – Dougal is also founder of the Glasgow-based internet music station Radio Magnetic where Jim Gellatly just happens to have a regular weekly spot. In January 2012, we launched the marathon Glasgow Music Tour at King Tut’s Wah Wah Hut. Since then, my role as R&D director lets me wander around looking for new ideas and meeting lots of lovely folk in all sorts of places.

DG: You have some famous names narrating the Walking Heads tours, such as radio presenter Jim Gellatly. What was it like working with such big, bold characters and experts in their field?

Jim is really great to work with, an absolute professional with a great sense of humour, very helpful and quick to respond to a new idea or review an old one – he is one of those rare busy people who answers an email almost immediately. Short, sweet and always to the point! Of course Jim already knew so much about Glasgow’s music scene and that gave us a head start. Though like the rest of us he was amazed at how much there was still to learn (and go on learning). I think we began with the Barrowland which is where Jim experienced his first gigs (Pogues, Cramps, Beastie Boys) when he came to Glasgow from Dundee – he remembers his amazement at seeing the Barras crowd throwing pints at the bands as a sign of appreciation, wondering why anyone in Glasgow would want to throw a pint away. Vic Galloway, Tam Coyle and Billy Sloan were other very knowledgeable contributors. All great to work with and passionate about Glasgow music.

DG: Walking Heads ran a Cinema City Treasure Hunt to coincide with the Glasgow Film Festival. Are there any similar events in the pipeline that you can share?

We had a lot of fun experimenting with the Cinema City treasure hunt – gaming is a new function on the GuidiGO app platform which enables us to try out lots of new tricks – and we are really keen to play around with some more new ideas soon. New treasure hunts, and maybe an adventure where people have to solve a mystery in order to meet up at some hidden venue for a celebration. We like the idea of creating digital games leading to a live gathering at the end. Can’t say too much more at the moment.

DG: We have our own City Walks section, with a small selection of themed walks. Have you tried any yet? Or do any take your fancy?

Sorry to say I haven’t had time to try out any of your walks yet (Walking Heads needs a screen break!) but they all look really enticing. Fresh from Cinema City and Glasgow Film Festival, I’m particularly drawn by the Ken Loach Sixteen Films tour, coming soon I see. I love the look of the quirky Police Box Tour and the Alexander ‘Greek’ Thomson Tour sounds like one of those eye-opening experiences where you rediscover the city with completely fresh eyes. In fact, Walking Heads will just have to do them all!

DG: If you could only recommend one sight to a tourist visiting for the first time, what would it be?

That’s a tough question! It could be so many different places, but everyone should go to the Barrowland, for the sheer, emotional rock history joy of it – and the, so-far, unspoilt surroundings! (A Spanish tourist who road-tested our pilot version of the Glasgow Music Tour identified that as his favourite spot on the tour, “it has a special kind of charm” he said.)

DG: What’s your hidden pleasure in Glasgow?

Another tough one! Maybe the discovery I personally enjoyed most: Stereo Bar, in a beautiful Charles Rennie MacIntosh building, hidden away up Renfield Lane, a dim alley so narrow you can’t stand far enough back to get a good photo of the building (glad to see the Discover Glasgow CRM Tour includes the old Daily Record building which is what it used to be). I love the bar too.

Finally, if you could change one aspect of Glasgow, what would it be?

Entering the realm of fantasy here, I would magic away the motorway – it cuts a divisive chasm through a great human city. It sounds impossible but cities can do it, Seoul, the capital of South Korea, transformed an urban motorway back into a river and parkland running through the city. Maybe I could simply wish for more pedestrian space? People make Glasgow, cars take it apart.

Our thanks to Fay and the entire team at Walking Heads for their time and the excellent app. If you think you have something to say about our great city and want to be features IN CONVERSATION, drop us an email.

By DiscoverGlasgowOrg, May 4 2014 10:20PM

First of all a big well done to all the pink-clad runners in the Glasgow Race For Life today, who had to put up with the grim Weegie fog. I could not believe it had only been a mere seven days since myself and some friends took part in the Glasgow Kiltwalk 2014, starting at the Hydro and finishing on the bonnie bonnie banks of Loch Lomond. I imagine it will be a while before I attempt that marathon length again, but the walk took us mostly along the scenic cycle route, which I heatily recommend.

Those involved in the kiltwalk, not only the 6000 walkers but also the back office staff and those along the way supporting us, were in high spirits, especially when we reached Yorkhill Hospital. The hospital and MediCinema inside were our chosen charity, and it was great before we had even left the city to be reminded on why we were setting out on such an epic trek. The children were outside greeting us or waving from the windows.

What I do wish is that the starting route through the city had been met by more pomp and circumstance, in the same way the London Marathon is for example. Londoners are out in full force, clapping and cheering on the runners. We passed by locals out for a morning stroll, letting them know whay we were all wearing kilts, and to please donate, but I wish it was something the city as whole could get behind, especially now having walked the distance.

And what a distance. It's hard to think in an age of cars, trains, and buses, that people would actually walk from place to place, those who could not afford a horse and cart or even a bycycle in the 19th Century (a thought that struck my mind when we passed the massive Bicycle Statue on the Clydebank Canal). It was about then, just before the half-way point, that the pains and aches began to reveal themselves, offset by the free crisps and cakes being handed out by volunteers.

The walk headed west, all the way out to Dumbuck,along the canal for the most part, joined by ducks and swans. Once we left the waterside, we passed through tunnels that would not be out of place in an episode of The Walking Dead! When we finally reached the single-figure mile markers, we were tired and sore, but the community spirit of the kiltwalkers is a power to behold. People like to keep their own pace, and some people do it alone. But if someone was sat by the route alone, or having problems with blisters, not only were there the excellent first aiders cruising around on bikes, but we all made sure everyone was okay, having a chat and sharing sweets.

By the time we reached the 1 mile marker, it was nearly 9 hours since we had left Glasgow. Our feet were sore, our skin was burned from the intermittent sun, and our bodies were craving calories. Thankfully there was a burger and a pint waiting at the finish line, but that last mile was possibly the hardest, made slightly easier by residents of Balloch shouting in support from their windows.

I hope to do it again next year, and when I do, I hope more of the city is aware of what is happening, when, and most importantly why, so they can come and support such a great cause and a great day. I have left my donation page open, so if you would like to donate even a couple of pounds, it would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks for reading,



By DiscoverGlasgowOrg, Apr 16 2014 05:49PM

On Tuesday night I attended the opening of the Yelp Gallery of Glasgow, hosted by the Ubiquitous Chip in Ashton Lane. It features a number of photos submitted by its community members, picked by a trio of judges and individually framed by community leader Briony (pictured making a thank you speech). Some thanks also has to go to the Virginia Gallery for their help in the evening. It was great to see the number of different styles of photographs, from the artful black & white pieces that perfectly captured the frame of Kibble Palace, to theintimate shots of food: one of the winners had snapped a picture of his scrumptious Bread Meets Bread burger. Drink was flowing while everyone enjoyed the entrees while buying prints of the hanging photos, with all profits going to charity. As well as the pre-framed photographs, we were treated to a live artwork display from artist Barry Neeson's live artwork, who managed to concentrate beyond the drunken banter to an amazing Glasgow-themed piece in just a few short hours.

Somewhere in the haze of the free booze - drifting from Aperol to Campari and then finishing the evening with several Wild Turkeys - I realised that much of the photography for Discover Glasgow is uniform, utilitarian, designed to illustrate what the sights look like, rather than capturing them to evoke a specific insight or emotion. Going forward, I think I may take my time with the photographs (there are over 1000 on the site at the moment), not to win any Yelp awards (although wouldn't that be great), but to try and capture some of the mystery and magic of what makes Glasgow cool, of the energy and passion that flows through its streets and alleyways.

This was also my first time out with the Yelp community, who were a friendly bunch, bordering on the hipster parable. If you live in Glasgow, you would do well to join their community, and not only for the free booze, but for doing what I always designed DG to do; opening your eyes to what is at your very doorstep.

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