Ad Lib (Merchant City, Glasgow)  : Review

33 Ingram Street
G1 1HA
T 0141 552 5736

Visit Date : 18 September 2016


First Impressions :

I had been to Ad Lib (Merchant City) a good few years ago, and at that point I was just so so (food and service). I had heard recently that it had been done up, and was a lot better so I thought I would give it a second shot.

On arrival when my friend and I entered we were greeted and I told the member of staff I had a booking and my name. The staff member then pointed to a table over the far side and said “how about that one”, and turned away. Myself and my friend were left standing and wondering, are we going to be shown to the table or do we just head over….we just headed over. This is the first time for a very long time I have never been shown to a table in a restaurant.

The new improvements inside didn’t really stand out for me, I noticed that the bar area has moved, and in place some more seats. The tables used to be covered in comic book pages, now its just a wooden look…..and thats about it really.

We ordered our food, and then ordered drinks. The one issue again with service we had was when my friend ordered a second drink, we were told they didn’t have it left so he looked at the menu and turned the staff member and started saying “I will have…” and at that point the staff member then walked away to the next table and done something with them. Yes, they did come back and take my friends order for another drink, but that was a little rude.

The Food :

For the starter I ordered Southern Fried Chicken Popcorn with a dip.


I really enjoyed this, and the dip was really nice. I would happily order this again.

This is where things started to go down hill again for me, and also my friend.

Main :


For the second course we both decided to upgrade to their special burgers menu, and we both went for the same one a “Ringer” which is Angus Beef w/ Swiss Cheese, Pulled Pork & Onion Ring. This sounded really nice….

The burger was nicely presented….

After about 3 bites I was actually getting bored eating it, the reason was the burger was a little dry and the flavours all blended so it wasn’t a great taste. The chips that came with it were nice, but they needed a lot of salt which is something I don’t tend to need to add to my orders.

I decided to go for the cheesecake of the day, the first member of staff I asked said it was double chocolate which sounded nice, then we got asked by another member of staff if we ordered and I said “yes the cheesecake of the day which I was told was double chocolate” and they replied “no its chocolate orange”. So I said ok and waited for my surprise to see what I got.


Well,…it arrived and yes the presentation again was nice. After a few bites, I found myself struggling to get any flavour from it…it wasn’t chocolate orange and definitely wasn’t double chocolate…so I am guessing it was just a hint of chocolate and no more.

Overall :

Overall this dinner out for both of us was a big disappointment, the service was terrible, the food was just so so. For me this was my second time and last. I am sure others might have had a better experience, but this was now twice it has happened and am not going to make it a third.

Just in case it was a case of bad luck twice, please give it a try just in case you have a better experience than I do.

The Rating for this visit (out of 5) :

  • Service : **
  • Menu Choice : ****
  • Taste : ***
  • Overall : **(2.5)

Author: krismunro

Blogger 📍#Scotland 🍽Glasgow food & lifestyle and beyond. 📝Honest reviewing 🍽Food•Drinks•Lifestyle•Products & more