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Biggest gantry of drinks

New chapter for former library as style bar

SpiritualistA once derelict library in the heart of Glasgow’s Merchant City is the latest addition to the city’s bars and boasts the country’s most extensive gantry comprising 320 spirits and liqueurs.

Spiritualist bar and restaurant in Miller Street, is owned by bar and restaurant operators Ryan Barrie and Jim Ballantyne, whose Camelot Catering Systems fitted out many of the city’s most stylish and well respected venues.

They have put “considerable” investment into Spiritualist in the former Stirling Library which lay derelict for 10 years.

An exclusive partnership has been sealed with specialist distributor Hot Sauce to offer Glasgow’s drinkers some of the world’s most prized drinks, from Louis XIII cognac to all three Fortaleza tequilas – one of only a handful of UK venues able to stock the entire range.

Spiritualist also offers an innovative “Buy a Tipple” service, by which customers are able to order a bottle of rare spirit and have it delivered to their door.

Mr Barrie, who also operates the Citation Taverne and restaurant on nearby Wilson Street, said the bar will offer “an unrivalled drinks list”.

He added:  “We also believe strongly in sourcing locally.”

Although Mr Barrie and Mr Ballantyne have worked together for more than 20 years, this is the first bar they have opened together.

Mr Ballantyne said: “Spiritualist has been years in the making. We wanted to do something special together but there were always other projects. For this – the venue, the investment, the idea, the team, the capital – everything came along at the right time.”

Mr Barrie adds: “I want Spiritualist to be about giving something unique and brilliant back to my city. I want people to be proud of it, for it to become an institution.”

Spiritualist’s modern art deco look will talk especially to its Glaswegian customers. The flooring’s herring-bone motif is repeated on the walls, the light fittings, bar area and coat hooks.

Artworks on the wall – one of which is a print of the world’s first negative – both express the venue’s art deco influence, but also have an eerie, other-worldy quality to them.

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