Brel branches out after refurb

‘Dancing trees’ shed light on new-look Ashton Lane bar

• The ‘dancing trees’ are a feature of the new-look Brel in Glasgow.

GLASGOW west end bar and restaurant Brel has been relaunched following the first phase of a £300,000 refurbishment by new owners Oli Norman and Stephen White.

The pair, who acquired the Ashton Lane venue earlier this year, oversaw the two-month project, which spanned the interior and exterior of the venue.
Outside, the beer garden has been overhauled and now features 15,000 fairy lights on the trees which are programmed to ‘dance’ to music .
Inside, the bar and restaurant areas have been spruced up with new furniture throughout and “atmospheric” lighting, creating a space which the owners describe as “cosy, comfortable and bursting with charm”.
The conservatory has been revamped with colourful tables and chairs and fitted out with new stoves; it’s said to be a “warm and cosy space” with views out into the beer garden and the ‘dancing trees’.
Fairy lights have also been used inside the venue, lining the brick walls and wooden beams of the 20-cover upper level, which is used for private dining and parties.
Brel’s menu has also been overhauled, with Norman and White opting to pair classic dishes the venue is known for, like Moules Frites, with new additions such as baked cheeses and Langoustine Frites.
On drinks, the beer menu has been refreshed and features brews from around the world as well as Belgian brands like Hoegaarden, Rodenbach Tripel and Duvel in a nod to the bar’s Belgian roots and namesake, singer Jacques Brel.
Co-owner Oli Norman said the revamp has given the venue a fresh lease of life.
“The beer garden and conservatory have been completely transformed and the ‘dancing lights of Brel’ are brilliant – they add a magical feel to the place and really add to the bar’s charm and character,” he said.
“The combination of the refurbishment, new menu and new marketing strategy has had an immediate impact and the bar is jumping every night – it’s great to see people falling back in love with Brel again.”

• The ‘dancing trees’ are a feature of the new-look Brel in Glasgow.
• The ‘dancing trees’ are a feature of the new-look Brel in Glasgow.