World Cancer Day – Beat 6 “Do good and Feel good”
As awareness is raised around the globe today as World Cancer Day aims to ‘Close the Care Gap’ of this body cell disease, it brought back to mind the dining experience from my birthday lunch last week. In Dennistoun, in the east-end of Glasgow the Beat 6 restaurant is just 3 months old. It’s been on my personal and Tasting Scotland ‘must try’ restaurant list since it opened in November 2021. “Do good – Feel good” is the motto in the latest venture from chef and restauranteur Nico Simeone, but this time it’s a little different. All the profits go to a local Cancer Charity.
As is the case in many families Cancer was to throw a curveball into the Simeone household when it was discovered that Nico’s wife, Valentina required treatment. It was through the Scottish-based Beatson Cancer Charity that the treatment and world-class care was provided.
How do you repay? Well if you’re Simeone you open a restaurant, take a well-honed dining concept, include the spice of collaboration (customers are asked which of the previous dishes they’d like to see on the menu again) and give all the profits to ‘the Beatson’. That gets my applause. And so the reservation for my birthday lunch.
The welcome and service throughout is flawless. Friendly, upbeat and professional. Some maybe find me critical when I’m out. I do try and deliberately face away from the kitchen, bar or wherever the staff are or it’s almost akin to going to a concert and using your phone to record it. Much better to simply enjoy every moment as a customer there and then! With nearly 10 years experience in 5-star hospitality across the globe it’s difficult not to connect though with the ebbs of flows of service or want to look through the lens. Here I found nothing that warranted that critical zoom lens.
The menu is typical Nico. Why change what works, right? A tasting menu – small plates – wines to match. This is no longer the £20 menu the concept started with, but it’s still a very reasonable £32 for 6-courses and optional matching wines at £27. On the wine side, it’s clear that the need for quality is never overlooked.
We begin with the optional snacks for £5. Sourdough bread and butter and for me one of the best dishes of the day. Chosen from the ‘Mad Hatters Tea Party’: Caesar Croquettes, Anchovy, Vinegar Powder, Gems Ketchup. 2-bite rounds of punchy deliciousness. Each dish continued in the same vain with well-considered, -cooked and -constructed dishes served alongside the paired wines.
Next a dish from the Bombay Kitchen menu, followed by ‘Salmon on the Rhine’ from the Alps menu. I liked this one too. Cured Salmon, Pumpkin Remoulade, Fennel and Dill, Keta Caviar.
The Steak Pie from the Chippy menu was void of pastry, but none the less tasty for it.
Next up, a lovely piece of Hake with Morteau Sausage, Saffron Rouille and Coco Bean from the Paris menu.
The final savoury dish saw another from The Alps and one of my favourites of the day. A Chicken and Pork Ballotine with Sauerkraut Ketchup and Black Garlic Emulsion.
For dessert a trip down memory lane to a time when as a child, and without a care in the world I would liberally fill my bowl to the brim with Honey Nut Cornflakes for breakfast. A rectangular Cereal Milk Panna Cotta with Clusters, Honey Gelee and Pear.
All in all the dishes are a master guide in combining flavours. Many simple little masterpieces put together. Whilst the customers are asked to partake in choosing the dishes, and even although there was for me a very slight disconnect with the balance and flow of the menu overall, its not enough to suggest it doesn’t work. It works. And with all the profits going to charity what’s not to like.
This is the first Beat 6 and I hope like Nico and the team it’s the first of many.
To play your part in supporting the Beat 6, the Beatson Cancer Charity and yes, let’s be bold – helping find a cure for Cancer you can book a table for Beat 6 here.
Thanks for taking the time to read. For anyone currently going through cancer treatment or supporting someone who is, my very best wishes for a speedy recovery.
- S Prev