I remember when this was all fields, no really I do. Fueled by the expansion of Newton Mearns, "Greenlaw village" has sprung up in the last couple of years between Crookfur and Patterton. Now there's a number of restaurants and shops here including a Waitrose; directly opposite is a Beefeater Grill - the newest in the Glasgow area and we were invited along to try out this year's Christmas menu.
Each Beefeater has a name, and this is The Castle Beefeater Restaurant, named after, we assume, the nearby private Pollok Castle, which is just on the other side of the motorway surrounded by trees and actually a fair distance from the Glasgow suburb of Pollok. Next door in the same building is a Premier Inn so you can stay in this "castle". Incidentally the present location of Cathcart Castle golf course is also miles from the site of Cathcart Castle!
It's also located right beside junction 4 of the M77 which is limited access so only really handy if you're travelling from Glasgow. If you're coming up from the south then junction 5 is probably more appropriate.
Inside we were warmly greeted and taken to our table; our server's name was Holly, which was very festive! The tinsel and decorations were up and first impressions were that it looks a lot brighter than the Black Bear Beefeater next to where Glasgow Zoo used to be (hence the name).
As we were here for research we sampled a number of the Christmassy drinks on offer. We had wanted to try the festival ale but it's only available in selected restaurants so instead we went for two festive cocktails - a Chambord royal (£5.99) and Chambord Spritz (£5.99) both providing festive takes on the usual recipes (we were also told that all the special Christmas drinks have double measures) and then we had a bottle of sparkling Fantinel Rose Brut(£18.49) a 12% fruity floral Prosecco with our food. This went down a treat - it was Christmas after all!
We love a good chicken live paté but it's oh so common to get a slab of the stuff with a lack of something to spread it on, but no such issue here as there were eight little slices of toast - there was probably still too much paté though as it was a hefty portion, not the strongest tasting and quite crumbly - somewhere between smooth and coarse. It was also very pink! A decent fig chutney and butter was also provided.
The prawn cocktail was pretty good, it had all the ingredients, all fresh, but more prawns and sauce wouldn't have gone amiss.
The turkey was thinly sliced, served with a pleasant gravy and good Yorkshire pudding and fluffy potatoes, the pig in a blanket was rather tasty too. The stuffing was a bit crunchy and sadly for Mrs Foodie, one of the few people in Glasgow who go out their way to eat sprouts, the little green veggies were overcooked! It was still a good filling portion though.
Mr Foodie went for the vegetarian option (with veggie gravy) to see how it fared against the usual meaty Christmas dishes. It was fairly decent but seemed to be mostly spinach (or something else that was green and leafy) rather than mushroom and brie! Like with the turkey, the potatoes and Yorkshire pudding were good but the sprouts were overcooked and mushy. We thought we were getting roast parsnips but it came with mashed neeps instead. It was very filling and Mr Foodie isn't so precious about his sprout cooking so ate the lot!
A huge glass of ice-cream with chocolate sauce, mint syrup, frozen After Eights made this a delectable dessert! And it was topped with cream, wafer and another After Eight just for good measure! It was really minty and chocolatey and the highlight of Mrs Foodie's meal.
The melt in the middle looked the part but unfortunately someone had forgotten to include the fondant in the middle(!) resulting in a drier than expected cake. It still had plenty of ice-cream and both caramel and chocolate sauce to keep it moist so all was not lost but we were advised by staff that this is being dropped from the menu in the new year.
This Beefeater uses Costa Coffee and if we were to pick one chain's coffee to use it would be Costa. We sampled a Gingerbread latte which was lovely and perhaps had a double shot of syrup rather than a single one. The Baileys latte was pleasant and creamy but not as boozy as the kin we make at home! And the salted caramel Cappuccino was very sweet and we couldn't taste the salt at all.
We had a very leisurely lunch at the Castle, the food came out quickly but we took our time and relaxed, service was great and attentive. There's free WiFi (requires signing up) and both male and female toilets were checked and were clean. There is disabled access and plenty of space in the car park despite it being very busy when we visited.
The festive menu is £15.49 for 2 courses or £18.99 for 3 running right up until 30th December. Christmas day is £49.99 and their new year's eve menu is £24.99
+ Impeccable service
+ Located right beside the M77 and handy for Waitrose
+ Passed the toilet inspection!
+ Free WIFI
- Food disappointing in some areas
View the festive menu at the Castle here.
The Castle Beefeater Grill
Greenlaw Crookfur Road
Tel: 01419 557 901
Mon-Sat: 12pm - 11pm
Sun: 12pm - 10.30pm
Breakfast serving times:
Weekdays: 6.30am - 10.30am
Weekends: 7am - 11am
Thank you to Beefeater for inviting us to try out their festive wares. Fred confirms his humans are writing the truth