Mad Lab pop up at SWG3, Glasgow

swg3 mad lab pop up acid bar

Mad professors at SWG3

The MAD LAB residency at SWG3’s Acid Bar is underway from now until September. MAD LAB is where the kitchen team from Cail Bruich, the renowned 3 AA Rosette-awarded Glasgow restaurant and one of our favourites, get creative concocting really seasonal dishes.

We really enjoyed last year’s Ka Pao residency, so we were excited to see what the chef’s at Cail Bruich would bring to SWG3 so if you are thinking of going along, here is what you can expect…well, at least until they change the menu in a few weeks time!

Located in the Acid Bar, SWG3’s café restaurant space, MAD LAB will be cooking up food every Thursday and Friday night, Saturday’s from noon and Sunday from 10 – 3 until September.


mad lab acid bar swg3 menuWine List

mad lab acid bar swg3 wine list

portuguese wine mad lab acid bar swg3

Shout out to the Mar de Lisbon white. Very nice, light and crisp, easy to drink and went with all the dishes. This was a press review night, so shared plates all round.  Which was good as although they are small plates, they do mount up.

First up,



Salted nuts, malted vinegar V DF (£3). Tangy salt & vinegar flavour, easy to sit and nibble away at (we are now trying to re-create these at home!).

Padron peppers, smoked sea salt GFV DF (£4.50) A long time fave of ours. Salt-coated Russian roulette peppers, what’s not to love?

Finally, Crispy chicken skin, creme fraiche, bacon jam GF (£4) Intense chicken fat flavour. WOW.  The crispy skin looked just like slices of puff pastry. Mrs Foodie isn’t a bit fan of chicken skin, but this was divine.  Like chicken crack…ers!

Vegetarian dishes.

CauliflowerBBQ cauliflower, toasted almond butter (£6)
Perfectly cooked cauliflower – just the right amount of roasting and soft inside, covered in butter…😍

Salt-baked potatoesSalt-baked potatoes, cultured cream, pecorino, black garlic GF (£6.50)
Carbs, cheese and creamy sauce, we would have been happy just with these two dishes all night!

Grilled pearGrilled pear, Jerusalem artichoke, frozen blue cheese V (£7) Pears and blue cheese is always a winner with us.  Tangy and creamy cheese covering ripe pears.


Sea breamCitrus-cured sea bream, umeboshi plum, wakame (Seaweed) cracker GF DF (£6.50)
Like a light prawn cracker topped with ceviche sea bream and a spicy plum sauce. We enjoyed this but it’s not for everyone. Umeboshi is fermented and very tangy – we tried it on a few occasions when we were in Japan and even brought some home but no one we gave it to liked it! I forgot to ask what the herb on the dish was too as it also had a strong taste.
Queen scallop thermidorQueen scallop Thermidor (baked in the shell) GF (£8.50)
A good handful of scallops, complete with coral, in a Thermidor sauce.  This one needed something to soak up the sauce, maybe a slice of sourdough? or a thicker sauce for coating the scallops more?

Monkfish satayMonkfish Satay, burnt lime, peanut GF DF (£10.50) although it says satay it’s like a Thai green curry with lots of lime flavour and crunchy peanuts for texture. A big thumbs up from both of us and Mr Foodie’s favourite on the night.


Raw beefRaw beef, charcoal oil, caper, frozen horseradish GF (£7.50). While we love steak tartare and have no problems eating raw meat this was probably our least favourite dish as it didn’t taste of too much. We love horseradish but the effect of freezing it lessened the taste to the point where the expected ‘heat’ never came.

Confit duck doughnutConfit duck doughnut, sour cherry, miso caramel (£8)
We looked forward to the novelty of a savoury doughnut but this was actually a sesame brioche bun with perfectly confited duck meat and a tart cherry sauce.

Smoked beef cheekSmoked beef cheek, sour kohlrabi, lovage mustard DF (EGGS) (£11.50)
Really good beefy meat and a sauerkraut. The lovage mustard had a good oomph and tasted more like wasabi being much stronger than the horseradish which came with the raw beef.


Date & ale cakeDate & ale cake, cultured creme fraiche, smoked caramel V (£6)
Really moist and sweet but also, unusually, really smokey but still very moreish in the way that a good sticky toffee pudding should be. Would go well with an Islay whisky.

Yeasted berry pavlovaYeasted berry pavlova, clotted cream V GF (£6)
A simple meringue, berry and cream combo. Light, sweet and summery. The berries tasted a bit boozy…like they’d swam in sloe gin for a bit.

Grilled TunworthGrilled Tunworth, treacle bread, black truffle (£7)
Grilled cheese, sweet bread and lots of truffle. Earthy and moreish, would love a sandwich of this, obviously not right now as we’ve just eaten 12 prior courses!

After our meal and wine we moved to the bar for an after-dinner cocktail, the Quick Fix just looks like a glass of wine and is very refreshing so will be a great one for warm summer nights.

swg3 mad lab pop up acid bar

The verdict

Just like with when we visited Ka Pao and were blown away there’s a great mix of dishes here too, many of which also incorporate elements from Asian cooking. We have been big fans of Cail Bruich for years anyway (even though we’ve never written about it oops!) so had an idea of what to expect but the food here is different to what we’ve eaten in their Great Western Rd restaurant. My favourite items  were all the snacks, the cauliflower, the potatoes, monkfish, the beef, the cheese and the smoked pudding which is a hefty meal when I come back (and hopefully some of the dishes will still be on the ever-changing menu when I return!). The raw beef was disappointing and although I enjoyed the sea bream cracker I think the taste will be a bit too unusual for some.


+ Chilled out location
+ Adventurous seasonal dining
+ Crispy chicken skin full of flavour
+ The monkfish is a must
+ A smoked dessert!
+ Great wine and cocktails
+ Menu changes every few weeks

– Not feeling the love for the raw beef
– Sea bream cracker not for everyone


Acid Bar
100 Eastvale Place
G3 8QG


On now until September 2019
Thurs & Fri 6 – 9pm
Saturday 12 till late
Sunday 10 – 3


To find out more or book a table, please visit:

fred purr of honour

Disclaimer: we were invited to the media preview night where we got to sample all the dishes on the menu plus a few drinks at no cost to ourselves.

Mr Foodie
Mr Foodie

Likes to travel, eat weird things and read three books at the same time.

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