Glasgow City Centre: Student Venue Guide

Students! Check out some of Glasgow city centre's best bars, cafes and venues from this year's Student Handbook

Article by Kate Pasola and Peter Simpson | 08 Sep 2017

The Project Café
134 Renfrew Street
The Project Café serves up a feast of tasty, conscience-friendly food with a side order of creative invigoration. There's always something going on, be it an exhibition, a gig or a workshop. Sweet escapism for anyone who needs to feed their face with cake and their soul with humanity.

Where the Monkey Sleeps
182 W Regent St
0141 226 3406
There’s too much to say about this beauty within a restricted word count, so let us throw some key terms at you for a bit instead. Sandwich shop. Rock-themed. ‘The Meathammer.’ Sofas. Art. Smoothies. Milkshakes. ROCK. THEMED. SANDWICHES.

239 North St
0141 221 0061
Getting your teeth stuck into Charles Bukowski is all part of becoming a student cliché, so you might as well visit Chinaski’s. Named after Bukowski’s alter-ego, it’s good fun with delightful food and great booze. 

The Butterfly and the Pig
153 Bath St
Almost like visiting your granny's: think mismatched, cloud-like couches and huge portions of homemade food. Pop round for a tasty lunch with a slice of indulgence for afters, or go the whole hog and hit the champagne-drenched afternoon tea. Whole hog, see? Hog. Oh forget it.

12 Kings Court
A vegan fortress which wears its meatlessness firmly on its sleeve. Where other vegan menus suffer from a heartbreakingly dull reliance on avocados and the adjective ‘smashed,’ Mono triumphs. It also microbrews its own ginger beer and lemonade, and even features its own fiercely independent record store with a particular devotion to vinyl.

85 Drygate
Ever cracked open a little hoppy number and wondered if you’ve got it in you to brew a beer of your own? Well, brewery/pub/beer garden Drygate’s got you covered. Try your hand in the studio, or even just sample one they made earlier. 

Paesano Pizza
94 Miller St
The dough, cooked up in 500-degree Italian-built ovens, is fluffy and remarkably light. The toppings are expertly-chosen. You can get a pizza and a beer for under £10, and be in and out the door in about 25 minutes. Paesano – it's very very good.

Ox and Finch
920 Sauchiehall St
This one’s a wee bit pricier (maybe one to bear in mind for when the folks are visiting), but it’s all tapas-style dishes, so the amount you fork out directly corresponds to the amount you fork in (to your mouth). 

Taco Mazama
6 Renfield St
These guys are all about the burrito. Filling-wise, the usual suspects are on offer, with pulled pork a particular favourite among the Mazamarnivores. If you fancy your Mexican fare in a different configuration, tacos, enchiladas and quesadillas are up for grabs too.

Meat Bar
142 W Regent St
Why have a normal meatball when you can have a smoked rabbit and bacon meatball? The clue's in the title with this one; when you want meat, go to Meat Bar.

Social Bite
103 St Vincent St
Sick of gnawing on a sub while guilt gnaws at your conscience? Well then, get yourself to Social Bite, the sandwich shop trying to make a difference. 25% of its employees are formerly homeless people, and all of its profits go to good causes. 

Good Press
5 St. Margaret's Pl
Run by a group of artists, designers, publishers and facilitators, Good Press is a gallery and bookshop combined, making original works of art available to everyone. Have a rifle among their totes, prints and cassette mixtapes and get a foothold into the Glasgow art scene.

Cass Art
63-67 Queen St
Whether you’re a devoted artist, a hardworking art student or just trying out a new hobby, these guys have got everything you could possibly need. The impossibly neat shelves are stocked with a huge range of art tools and supplies — there's a student discount too, naturally.

350 Sauchiehall St
A multi-functioning arts venue which puts on quite the magnificent spread of contemporary film, music, performance and the odd painting too. It hosts a programme of exhibitions every year, houses the Aye Aye bookshop, and provides studio and gallery space for artists and offices for a host of 'cultural tenants'.

28 King St
This gallery’s been on the go for ages. Established by a group of GSA graduates in 1983, it seeks to encourage interaction between its members to create an inspirational atmosphere. You’ll also catch annual exhibitions of members’ work, and a bunch of film screenings too.

Glasgow Film Theatre
12 Rose St
With a fair bit more charm than your average cinema, GFT’s famed for its Art Deco design and old-timey ambience. Part of Glasgow’s cultural scene since 1939, it acts as the hub of the annual Glasgow Film Festival, and is the place to catch classic screenings, one-offs, and arthouse (read: actually good) new releases.

Tron Theatre
63 Trongate
The Tron Theatre stands out in its city centre location, and the theatre it hosts stands out too. Up until 2014 it played host to Glasgay! festival, and continues to host Celtic Connections and the Merchant City Festival. The 16th Century building boasts a rather swanky theatre bar, too.

117 Bath St
Bloc+ hosts gigs from unsigned and established acts most nights of the week, from low-key acoustic offerings, to skull-crushing heavy metal. Away from the music, the bar's resident 'Mad Chef' fires out great twists on classic bar grub, with veggies and vegans well-catered to alongside meat fiends.

Nice ’n’ Sleazy
421 Sauchiehall St
Sleazy’s remains home to some of the city’s most intelligent, open-minded gig bookers, who regularly hand the stage over to acts that others would barely consider music. Upstairs, it's a lair of super-cheap White Russians and eavesdropping on notable Glasgow musicians.

King Tut’s Wah Wah Hut
272A St Vincent St
Another niche-defying institution, King Tut’s has its fingers in lots of pies. It's a cosy basement bar with comfort food and pool tables, but upstairs you’ll find one of the best intimate gig venues in the country. 

13th Note
60 King St
Thanks to astonishingly cheap overheads, 13th Note has spent its life allowing all manner of folk to have their wicked musical way in the crumbly cellar. For this very reason, it’s established a reputation as an uncompromising believer in, and supporter of, live music in G-town.

427 Sauchiehall St
0141 332 7304
Juggling both established acts and underground local talent like only a Glasgow music venue could, Broadcast usually has a pretty eclectic line-up. Shows take place downstairs, and the charm of Broadcast’s upper floor lies in its tasty stonebaked pizza. 

22-28 Renfield Ln
Another of Glasgow’s masters of all trades, Stereo’s a vegan café, bar and music venue. You can also expect some of the bigger promoters, DIY outfits and curious independents all to appear. Often the host of gig after-parties, which some of Glasgow’s finest DJs have been known to crash.

La Cheetah Club
73 Queen St
Not only the club with the sassiest moniker in Glasgae, La Cheetah’s also known for its diverse range of banging clubs, hand-picked from the vast brambles of the musical spectrum. 

Sub Club
22 Jamaica St
Subbie pushes the musical envelope week in, week out, canonising its resident DJs and providing a space for local up-and-comers and big name guests alike – a natural haunt for the very finest talents. 

Flat 0/1
162 Bath St
The thinking behind Flat 0/1 is that everyone knows 'that flat'. The party flat. A place where the decks are out, the booze is deluging and everybody in the room is gyrating until the small hours. Imagine that flat, but run by real staff instead of your wasted friends. Good stuff.

The Barrowlands
244 Gallowgate
A total institution. Most people – Glasgow resident or otherwise – have probably been to a gig in this Gallowgate musical wonderland. There’s a ridiculous starry façade and a sprung floor which allows Barras crowds to jump higher and go crazier than anyone else.

300 Sauchiehall St
Originally home to the country’s first cinema, the ABC has become one of Scotland’s toppest notch gig venues. Well, two of Scotland’s toppest notch gig venues, actually. There’s the delightful Art Deco main hall, and a smaller ABC2 which comes complete with an intimate, clubby vibe. 

The Buff Club
142 Bath Ln
Head to The Buff Club if you want to throw some absolutely formidable shapes. Classic hip-hop, funk, R'n'B and soul all come a-pumping from the speakers, along with some more niche treats from guest DJs. Go with it, it’s all good.

The Art School
20 Scott St
A certified staple on Glasgow’s student clubbing scene, the Art School Union is not your run-of-the-mill union. After extensive refurbishment, it has re-established itself as a cultural and clubbing powerhouse in the heart of Glasgow, regularly serving up nights of dynamic, ambitious and creative student hedonism.

McCune Smith Cafe
3 Duke St
A laid back cafe with an insistence on using only ethically-sourced ingredients, McCune Smith has noble ambitions befitting its namesake, the pioneering African-American doctor James McCune Smith. That they serve a range of sandwiches named after some of the nation’s key historical figures shows they know how to have fun too.

Saint Luke's
17 Bain St
One of the city's newest gig venues, the converted church round the corner from the Barrowlands is a banging addition to Glasgow's live music scene. Even when the main hall isn't rocking, the Winged Ox kitchen next door serves up an eclectic mix of hearty grub and great drinks seven nights a week.