“ Type: Chinese / Address: 91 Union St / Glasgow / G1 3TA / Tel: 0141-229 1833 „
King's Lodge is a Chinese Buffet Restaurant in Glasgow City Centre. Its actual address is :
91 Union Street
0141 229 1833
This particular Chinese offers a self service, buffet. It offers various Chinese and traditional type dishes in the different sections. You can take a bowl or plate and help yourself to whatever you wish to eat.
The salad bar offers turkey, cold boiled eggs and various sides such as coleslaw, potato salad and beetroot. Prawn cocktail ingredients are also available. Two types of soup are available.
The main food areas are split into 2 sections. The largest section near the bar, offers a wide selection of dishes dependant on when you visit. On offer is various types of rice and noodles, chips, prawn crackers and chicken Maryland. There are mushroom type dishes and also mussels. The other section offers beef and chicken curries, chicken in Peking/Satay sauces and spare ribs. The hot food are set out in 3 rows on hot plates with ladles for each food.
The desserts are located near the kitchen area at the back. Most are placed within a chiller with a seperate, Mr Whippy type ice cream machine sitting away from the desserts. Desserts include banana fritters with syrup, various fruit salads, jelly, apple pies and gateauxs.
A well stocked bar offers various soft drinks, wines and beers. The drinks are brought to your table by the waitress and are added onto your bill.
There is a reception type desk at the entrance where you will be greeted and where you can pay your bill at the end of your meal. For larger parties, a cloakroom is situated near the back of the restaurant. Ladies and gents toilets are way up the back of the restaurant and offer 3 cubicles in each toilet. Payment is accepted by card or cash.
The maximum seating time is limited to 1 and a half hours. The restaurant opens at 1130 and closes late. The restaurant operates on different priced menus depending on which day you visit and when.
The lunch menu is available from 11.30 - 1630 - £6.85
The happy hour menu is available from 1630 - 1900 - £7.85
The grand buffet dinner menu is available from 1900 - closing time - £9.85/10.85
All day Sunday - £7.85
King's Lodge in Glasgow has been a favourite of ours for a few years now. When a Woohoo Bingo Glasgow meet was arrange for April, we decided to go to the King's Lodge for our meal. The restaurant is very conveniently located on Union Street. If you are coming from Central Station, it is to the right of the East side exit and is noticeable by its purple front.
~~Meeting and Greeting~~
We went as a group of 8 in April and arrived at the restaurant around 1530. On entering, we were greeted by a lovely waitress who took the amount in our party into consideration and set up a table for 8 near the entrance. We arrived towards the end of the lunch time so there was an overlap. We decided to chill out with a drink and wait for the happy hour to start at 1630.
The restaurant is tastefully decorated if a bit dull. It follows a cream wall and red carpet theme with various Chinese dragon plaques on the walls. The seating is red and gold chairs teamed with marble top tables. There are various table set ups available from 2 seats up to 4 and 6 depending on the party size. The seats extend from the entrance away up past the buffet and to the kitchen area. Personally, I think they have crammed too much into such a small space. Getting between the aisles isn't easy as a person but a wheelchair or buggy would prove to be difficult to manouvre up and down the aisles. We visited with our son once and found even having him in the high chair, people were constantly bumping him showing how little space is actually available.
The bar area is quite small and occupied by one member of staff at a time. The actual buffet bar isn't spacious and staff frown upon you going round one end so you are forced to queue and lean over the whole buffet to get food. There isn't enough space for others to squeeze by whilst some scoop food out making it time consuming try to get your meal. The toilets are located out of the way and although soap and loo roll were available, the toilets on this occasion weren't very clean. The rest of the restaurant appears very clean and looked after.
When we were ready to go up, I decided to forget about a starter as I am not keen on the soups on offer (chicken noodle/chicken sweetcorn). The plates were exceptionally warm to the point that they almost burnt my hands! So, we were there during happy hour though I cannot say there were much replenishment of food from lunch. Mussels were added to the buffet in the spare spaces.
I am not very adventurous when it comes to food but have my favourites. I went for a full plate consisting of egg fried rice, beef and chicken curry, some chicken in Peking sauce, chips, chicken satay and prawn crackers. The curry looked reheated but everything else was plentiful and appealing. A few in my group had the mussels commenting on how tasty they were and many went up for second helpings. My sister had eyes bigger than her belly and this resulted in her leaving a lot of her second helping..much to the dismay of the staff.
My meal was cooked to a reasonable heat..not too hot but nor was it cold. Cuttlery was also self service which is worth noting to avoid having to go back up again! The chicken in Peking sauce is particularly tasty and of a high quality. I was let down by the curry. The chicken was mushy and tasted undercooked which I wasn't keen on and scooped it to the side. Everyone else enjoyed their meal. Personally, I think the choice on offer isn't amazing when compared to other restaurants. As far as I can remember, there isn't much variation if you come at night time, except a few extra desserts.
I managed one plateful and decided I wanted a dessert! The desserts are chilled well to keep fresh but the plates were again very hot causing my ice cream to melt rather quickly. The bowls hadn't been properly dried. The dessert choice could certainly have been better. The gateuxs had nuts and dark chocolate which doesn't appeal to all. The jelly was a bit artificial and tasteless. I settled for some banana fritters and syrup which was yummy and the fruit was devoured by my sister who commented on its freshness. Not a patch on my local Chinese who offer a chocolate fountain!
~~Service and Staff~~
The staff speak a reasonable amount of English and are well presented in black trousers and shirts. I noticed the lack of male prescence amongst the staff. One member of staff was clearly in charge and welcomed us. From entering, we gave our drinks orders and the drinks were brought to us in a matter of minutes. Everything else was self service and our bill was promptly delivered when requested. We were thanked for our visit as we left.
One thing that did annoy us though, and this seems typical of any Chinese buffet I have visited, is that the staff linger around your table watching to ensure you don't waste food and waiting to sweep your glasses and plates away and clean. I went to move my chair back and nearly bumped one out the way which was really nerving and made me uncomfortable.
We started a kitty on entering for drinks and each put £10.00 in for our meal and the change went towards the next bar we went to! I believe we had around 20 drinks between 8 of us. This included bottles of Budwiser, vodkas with mixers, pints and various soft drinks. Our total bill came to just under the £110.00 mark including meals and drinks.
~~Conclusion and Recommendation~~
King's Lodge is in a prime location and is ideal for those wishing to have some Chinese whilst out shopping in the City Centre. It isn't huge and certainly doesn't have a cosy feel due to the amount of staff lingering. The food selection wasn't amazing but sufficient and there is something to suit everyone including those who are vegetarian.
The restaurant doesn't have the same appeal to me anymore. The food isn't cooked all that well and appears reheated. The lack of dessert choice could be resolved by adding a cheesecake or something similar. Price wise, it isn't expensive for an all you can eat and certainly rivals any restaurants in the immediate area. We sat for just short of the hour and a half and on leaving, the queue was right out the door so it is certainly popular and one to book to guarantee a table.
I suppose for the price, I cannot really complain but something needs to be done about the chicken not being fully cooked and tell the staff to relax a bit and allow others to eat their meals. We enjoyed our dinner and our night out. King's Lodge is a casual, calm ambience restaurant and in this case, I recommend it with reservations. For groups or families with older children, its perfect. The location would also suit business and local workers.
It is worth noting that they offer a take out service ideal for those working in the area who cannot stay for any length of time. I have it on good knowledge, that the buffet products are used for the take out and taken straight from the buffet itself rather than be freshly made.
Thanks for reading x