1 + 1 + 1 = Six by Nico
We really like 111 by Nico, an established Glasgow favourite (See reviews here and here) so there was quite a buzz when Nico announced his plan to open Six by Nico in Glasgow’s Finnieston and now it is here! Every six weeks a new menu will appear which will be themed upon a different place or a memory. The theme until 23rd April is “The Chippy,” with future themes set to be…well, that would be telling. Let’s just say there are plenty of themed nights ahead!
The decor is relaxingly understated. A blank canvas that makes sense if you are going to change the theme every six weeks.
The six-course tasting menu is priced at a reasonable £25. There is also a vegetarian menu following the same theme. We didn’t try the vegetarian alternatives but have included them for info. Both include the option of matching wines for an additional £25.
For those who prefer a bottle or a glass, wine prices start at about at about £3.50 and £20 respectively. There is also a good selection of beers, spirits, water and soft drinks.
We started with some nibbles (£5). There was Artisan Bread and Butter, as there should be in a chippy, together with a Peat smoked Haddock Bon Bon, Salt and Vinegar Peanuts and a Squid Cracker with Taramasalata and Lemon Gel. The Cracker was a lovely taste sensation and crowned this larger than usual amuse bouche.
Chips & Cheese
This tea time classic had been transformed into Confit Potato, Parmesan Espuma with Mustard Crumb. An espresso cup of cheesy foam blanketing potato pieces with just a hint of garlic oil. A lovely savoury start. Though when you visit you may be offered Crisp Potato Cannelloni filled with Crowdie Mousse. An equally tasty dish that acknowledges the Italian contribution to chippy cuisine.
Monkfish is a firm bodied fish that feeds on shellfish and takes on their flavour. When it was much cheaper, it was sometimes passed off as scampi. Perhaps with a knowing smile, the scampi on this occasion was Scrabster monkfish cheek. Deep fried in a light crumb. Served in a scallop shell and arranged in an undersea scene of squid ink and herb emulsion rocks and other tasty morsels. A dousing of Dashi added the finishing touch and created a lovely sea aroma. A very nice dish.
The matching wine was Apello, Sauvignon Blanc. Like many New Zealand wines, it was light and well-balanced without a hint of sharpness. A great choice for the Scampi course or any seafood dish.
The vegetarian choice was White Pudding of Duck Egg, Warm Tartare, Gem Lettuce
The vegetarian choice was Beer Battered Cauliflower with Pommegranate, Preserved Lime, Caper & Raisin
(BTW – No idea what car Nico drives)
The thing that makes Scottish special fish “special” is the breadcrumbs. No panko here. These are bright orange. And while you will burn 25 degrees of sunshine, these things retain their colour when fried at 400 degrees. So tough and crusty, rumour has it they were used to seal Chernobyl. Fortunately no glowing orange crumbs here. Nico’s Special Fish was a beautifully cooked piece of Shetland cod served with sea vegetable, pickled mussels and taramasalata. The pickled mussels were a great talking point as we reminisced over jars of pickled cockles, mussels and the other delights that line chippy shelves.
The matched wine was Goldeneye Pale Ale From Scotland’s Black Isle. Beer may seem an odd choice with fish, but having enjoyed it on many occasions I heartily recommend it. Pale ales made with lager hops seem to provide the best match. So I was more than happy to savour a glass of Goldeneye.
Smoked Sausage suppers are a post-pub favourite that has defied the advice of health professionals for years. Hopefully, they would approve of Nico’s reinterpretation which sees Ayrshire pork and black pudding bound in a skin of wound potato noodles and deep-fried. The result is a lovely combination that brings together several chippy flavours. The potato noodles add a great mouth texture. The “sausage” was served with apple and celeriac. One of my favourite taster courses.
White Rioja has rightly grown in popularity. Juan Carlos Sancha offered here was a lovely example. Easily drinkable, with gentle mineral notes that worked nicely with the Smoked Sausage (bet no one has ever written that line before 🙂
Vegetarian; Veggie Sausage; Wild Mushroom, Goats Cheese, Celeriac
Deep Fried Mars Bar
Salted Caramel, Chocolate Nougat, Malt Parfait. It was sweet. it was sinful. It was good.
Dessert was served with a glass of Recchia; an Italian Recioto della Valpolicella from Vento. A rich sweet red full of Christmas pudding and reminds you that not all the best sweet wines are white.
Six by Nico offers a wonderfully entertaining evening. And make no mistake, this is food as entertainment. Yes, you could gulp and go, though that would mean missing the opportunity Six offers to relax and reminisce. The matched wine choices were excellent, and a great way to try new wines. For those on a tighter budget, a shared bottle for about £20 fits the bill. Service was excellent and dishes came out at a nice unhurried pace. Everything about the place says chill out. So we did.
+ Great food. Lovely dishes full of little surprises.
+ Invokes nostalgic memories and discussion
– I will have to go back every six weeks!
1132 Argyle St Finnieston, Glasgow, G3 8TD
Come say hello
Disclaimer: we were invited along to this preview dinner which we did not have to pay for.