We've been sceptical about American (themed) burger places like Buddy's and Five Guys but when Steak, Cattle & Roll (formerly Al's American Diner) were offering free meals to tables of 4 to celebrate their first birthday, we thought why not give it a try? It's in a slightly unusual location, just outside the city-centre at the eastern-end of Cathedral Street near to Strathclyde University buildings and the Royal Infirmary but set adrift, surrounded by roads with only the Destiny Church next door for comfort. We never visited when it was Al's American Diner but I'm guessing not much has changed interior-wise as it retains that classic Americana diner-look and student halls of residence are just across the road so we bet that it's popular with students.
Not fully realising the extent of the food onslaught that was to come I ordered an Irn-Bru milkshake (£3.95). Topped with whipped cream and a Tunnock's caramel wafer, it was thick, sugary and a diabetic's worst nightmare! Everyone else just ordered lager (the bores!).
Between us we ordered two types of burger, firstly the Steak, Cattle & Roll signature burger (£9.95) which comprises steak, Gruyère cheese, lettuce (and probably plenty of things we've forgotten!) encased in a sesame seeded bun. It was huge, tall and meaty and actually pretty good for us burger sceptics.
This was their special (no idea how much it cost), it had a proper name...we forget what it was now but it comprised chicken, steak, bacon, and lots of ranch dressing and cola sauce and was very very messy. As for the taste, well the chicken was pretty succulent and the combination with steak and bacon and all that sauce was a winner. Very filling but it was so messy so sauce oozed everywhere but the mess was entertaining!
For sides we were offered a mixed selection of what they offer:
Louisiana hot wings - usually you get 12 for (£10.95) and we received 4. They came with a blue cheese mayo and were pretty hot and rather tasty.
Bacon beans (£2.45) - very sweet and also with a kick.
Macaroni cheese (£3.45) - in a creamy and not very cheesy sauce. Not vintage macaroni but bizarrely it worked well as a palate cleanser to take away the heat from the wings and beans!
Onion straws (£2.45) - onion rings but without the ring! Nice and savoury.
Cornbread & ranch sauce (£2.45) - light, sweet and cakey.
Parmesan chill flake chips (£2.45) - standard chips covered in chilli, cumin and coriander.
After all that we were stuffed with no room for pudding, if we had attempted a 3rd course I'm sure we would've all ended up on beds in the Royal!
We enjoyed our trip to Steak, Cattle & Roll, the burgers were enormous (the only criticism would be too much sauce) and perfectly filling without the addition of side-dishes so be wary about how many you order! 1 portion of chips between 2 should be fine, though the chips were disappointing - I'd go with hot wings or spicy beans instead, bear in mind that most of the menu is high on sugar and cumin! Staff were very friendly and helpful and the toilets, which are located down a set of stairs in the basement, were clean but a bit stale smelling. There's also an ATM right outside if you need one.
Steak, Cattle & Roll may be *just* outside the city-centre but it's actually very easy to get there by bus (various routes stop on Cathedral St) or by train to High Street. There is space for cars to park directly outside, if that's full then there's a pay-and-display behind. We also understand that they're opening a more-central outlet behind the St.Enoch centre on Howard Street soon.
+ Burgers were very tasty
+ Huge portions
+ A lot better than some of the other burger places out there at the moment
+ Staff friendly and helpful
+ American diner interior
- Too much sauce so very messy
- chips and macaroni cheese were disappointing
Steak Cattle & Roll gave away a number of tables to parties of 4 to celebrate their first birthday and we were lucky enough to get one of these but Fred vouches this post as an accurate and fair assessment of the meal.