We Lived La Dolce Vita At Glasgow’s Most Glamorous Italian Restaurant

As Banca di Roma in Glasgow city centre is housed within an A-listed former bank, on the glittering Royal Exchange Square, its setting is a showstopper in itself. And once inside, the backdrop of beautifully restored original features is equally as impressive. Such a location certainly makes it the perfect place for a romantic date night, but would the food live up to such elegant surroundings?

Banca Di Roma Restaurant Review | DesignMyNight

Banca di Roma's menu in Glasgow features a variety of indulgent Italian classics.

Despite the restaurant being very new on the scene, it was already a hive of activity during our Thursday evening dinner, boasting tables filled with the city's most glamorous residents. The sophisticated interiors featured monochromatic zig-zag flooring, a spectacular centrepiece tree with autumnal foliage and an open kitchen that gave a hint of the culinary excitement to come.

We began our meal with a sparky lychee and raspberry spritz (£12), plus the intriguing (and delicious) signature toma basil martini (£12), which was created by distilling the juice of the tomatoes into a spirit. The sommelier was rightly excited about this particular aperitif - unlike anything I’d had before, this vivid green concoction was lip-smackingly fresh and vibrant, similar to a herbal, zingy mojito.

Banca Di Roma Menu Review | DesignMyNight

The plates were just as pretty as the interiors at one of the best Italian restaurants in Glasgow.

We then dived into the food, opting for a few small dishes to share: the il tonno piccante (£16), la burrata (£13) and raddichio insalata (£10). Beautifully presented, the il tonno picante (tuna tartare) was alive with spice and sweetness, while the creamy burrata bathed in fresh peas, broad beans and a vibrant herb oil. Alongside these, the light radicchio salad was a great option to cut through the indulgence of the other starters.

For the main course, I couldn’t resist the monkfish ossobuco (£28), with a side of skin-on fries (£6) to share. Monkfish is difficult to get right, but this great hunk of fish was cooked to juicy perfection, and the ossobuco sauce was rammed with rich flavour, spiked using ‘nduja and a scattering of plump mussels. As the sauce was ideal for bread-mopping, I’d recommend ordering the focaccia if you go for this dish - I only wish I had myself. My companion chose the parmigiana (£18), which boasted stacked layers of aubergine, velvety tomato sauce and cheese, declaring it a sumptuous take on classic comfort food. To accompany our mains, we requested glasses of Gavi di Gavi (£11.60), a crisp and refreshing white wine that oozed notes of apples and flowers, and Il Preliminare (£10.90) - a more tropical white, with a nutty finish.

Banca Di Roma Glasgow Review | DesignMyNight

Make sure to try the tiramisu on Banca di Roma Glasgow's menu - you won't regret it.

Who can resist dessert? Certainly not me, nor my companion, thankfully. The tiramisu (£7) was luscious, pungent with coffee and brought just enough of a boozy hit - and don’t let appearances fool you, this seemingly small bowl disguised a very generous portion. My dinner date went for the torta al pistacchio (£10), a light vegan pistachio cake with a berry coulis that offered both style and substance.

The DesignMyNight Digest

Banca di Roma may be one of the city’s newest dining destinations, but if our meal is anything to go by, it’s going to be an incredibly sought-after spot before long. A stunning setting, impeccable service and thoughtfully curated menus all combine to make an elegant experience that feels befitting of its location. Each dish allowed its hero ingredient to shine, with layers of flavour enhancing the overall deliciousness, and the refined presentation of each plate made them all feel irresistibly Instagrammable.

  💰 The damage: £177 for two, plus service charge.

  📍  The location: 31 Royal Exchange Square, Glasgow, G1 3AJ.

  👌 Perfect for: A glamorous date night or special occasion.

 ⭐ Need to know: Make sure to try the toma basil martini, it's an absolute winner.


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