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Old Glasgow Pubs by john gorevan


Ferrari Bar.

49 Sauchiehall Street, Glasgow.



Ferrari Bar. 1991.

Ferrari Bar in Sauchiehall Street takes it's name from Guido Ferrari the owner of the original Ferrari Restaurant and bar which was situated across the street. Mr Guido Ferrari came from the Swiss village of Ludiano and came to Glasgow to set up the Ferrari Restaurant at 10 Sauchiehall Street in 1938, he became one of the most famous restaurateurs at that time. He retired in 1963 when the restaurant was taken over by Mr Dino Baldi and Mr Italo Pini. The restaurant opened it's first cocktail bar in 1964. The old restaurant was bought by the Glasgow Corporation in 1967 and pulled down to make way for redevelopment in the area. Mr Ferrari died in 1968, he was survived by his wife and two sons, one of whom was a priest in South America.

Ferrari interior

Interior view of the new cocktail bar Ferrari's, 10 Sauchiehall Street. 1964.

In 1970 Dino Baldi and Italo Pini, commitioned architects Frank Burnet, Bell and Partners to draw up plans for a new restaurant across the street from the old establishment. The new modern building was known as Empire House which was a massive concrete structure of pillars and bare walls. The pillars were encased in multi-coloured glass, a new bar was installed with a dining area capable of accommodating 56 people. A new feature in the restaurant was the white draped chef in the window who prepared pizza's and other titbits. The new sign above the door was Dino's and is still going strong today.

Ferrari interior1 ferrari interior2

New dining area, Dino's. 1970. ..| A view of Ferrari's new bar. 1970.

This is one of many favourite places in town to dine, before I was married I used to take my future wife here to dine three or four times a week.

Dino's was a fully licensed bar diner having the additional hour after 10pm. On Sundays Dino's opened between 12.30 and 2.30 and from 6.30 to 11 pm.


In the NEWS 1978...

Ferrari's is still in top gear...

One of the most fondly remembered of Glasgow Restaurants was the old Ferrari's at 10 Sauchiehall Street. I ate there every Saturday night and once attempted to drink my way right through the wine list. It took me weeks and weeks to get to just over 30 wines and as there were 170 still to go I gave up the delightful struggle.

Guido Ferrari retired and the place was taken over by Dino Baldi, who was faced with the problem of moving because our wonderful Town Council was demolishing the Kirk, the restaurant, and all the other buildings. Dino solved his problems by moving across Sauchiehall Street to the building which replaced the Empire Theatre.

The new Ferrari's has none of the austerity of the old one. There's a big dark cocktail bar and you can get bar lunches there. The restaurant proper is bright and modern at the back.

The food is very much the same as it always was, but the wine list is down to 26 items, and I think I could tackle that. A good test of any restaurant is Chicken Maryland and I had that. It was quite simply the best C.M. that I've tasted for some time.

With fruit, corn pancake, and various et ceteras it came to £2.50. Mr partner, the gourmet girl, had fish and chips £1.70 for fried sole and yum-yummed to herself.

We drank a good Pouilly Fume £3.50 and the bill, including starters and coffee, plus VAT, came to just over £11. For its standard Ferrari's is surprisingly inexpensive. Most of the main dishes are in the £2 to £3 level, though Chateaubrland steak for two would cost you £8.


Most of the people who knew the old Ferrari's regret its passing. The new one is quite different, and you don't need to warn visitors about the plain surroundings before you take them there.

As unusual Glasgow licensed restaurant is the Copra at 336 Argyle Street. Its regulars aren't going to like me for recommending it, but I don't see why other people shouldn't enjoy it.

The unusual part is that it opens at 9 a.m. and stays open all day until 7 p.m. You can have your lunch at four o'clock in the afternoon if you so desire. There are two rooms linked by open arches and in the middle of the day they are packed by business gents and Argyle Street shoppers from far-off places with strange sounding names, such as Bellshill.

The average dish, unless you're having a grill, is under £1. The cooking is straightforward, and my own favourites are steak pie home-made every Thursday, Aberdeen haddock with an egg on top, and grilled sausages with American pancakes. The pancakes are smothered in syrup and they go nicely with the sausages, believe it or not.

There's an adequate wine list and particularly good service by the waitresses. And probably when I see the crowds next time I'm there I'll wish I had never written this!

Read More On Glasgow's Old Restaurant's.


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