Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > U.K./Ireland >
Jul 27, 2011 10:10 PM

Grouse in Glasgow after the Glorious Twelfth?

Suggestions on a restaurant that will serve grouse after the start of the season? Just realized that we will be in the area (from California), and it seems that these game birds are a very traditional Scottish food. I otherwise will book a self-catering apartment and roast one myself!

Also, advice on game dealers/butchers as well as other game birds to try (pheasant, mallard, teal, wood pigeons, partridges, snipe, woodcock) would be appreciated. (I know some may be out of season and therefore frozen). Would prefer to avoid anything that "tastes like chicken".

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Depending on how close to the 12th you'll be, you'll need an upscale place serving traditional food. Many of the early birds find their way to the expensive tables in London.

    FWIW, none of the gamebirds you mention taste the remotest bit like chicken. Pigeon is regarded as a pest so is always in season.

    1. You'll change your accommodation plans on the basis of the availability of one meal? A true Hound!

      The other game comes into season variously on 01 Sep or 01 Oct and Woodcock don't really arrive in the UK much before November. You might find some game birds frozen from last year, but I seem to recall that supermarket chain Sainsbury's was successfully prosecuted some years ago for selling game out of season, even though it was frozen! Trading Standards officers with an odd idea of what they should be doing, no doubt.

      Pigeon is superb.

      1. I would recommend the Ubiquitous Chip, which is likely to have grouse as any place in Glasgow, as well as other game. That's where I had my first wood pigeon, which I quite prefer to grouse. And it was served quite rare at the Chip.

        3 Replies
        1. re: Joan Kureczka

          I'd recommend the Ubi Chip as well, especially as they have the cellar to cope with grouse. Apart from the year-round wood pigeon pest (which are delicious), snipe is the only other game bird that comes into season at the same time as grouse and they're about as easy to get hold of as Roc's eggs.

          If you're buying yourself and plan to roast, be aware that prices in the week after the 12th are astronomical. I usually try (usually I fail ;-) to wait until around the end of the month, when prices drop down to more normal levels.

          1. re: Joan Kureczka

            Thanks for the replies. We ended up purchasing and roasting both grouse and wood pigeon. I also think that pigeon is tastier--red meat that was very meaty, almost like beef. The kids even enjoyed it. I would have pigeon again; not sure about grouse.

            1. re: alfredck

              Glad you enjoyed the pigeon - I cook at home regularly. My local farmers market sells packs of six locally-shot breasts. A quick marinade in oil and thyme, minute of so in the pan and onto some dressed leaves for a dead easy starter (basically a Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall recipe). Can be a bit chewy, of course, if the birds are old.