The temperature was spiralling off the dial – the city was hot, and I don’t mean because the clues were piling up.

No, life was quiet on the Tec-ing front and a good thing, too. When the weather swelters, hours parked in a baking Buick doesn’t hold much appeal.

So it happened that the Moll and me were sauntering along in Merchant City after a nice walk on Glasgow Green as early evening fell.

We’d worked up an appetite – all this healthy walking stuff is kind of novel for us.

Right on cue, we spotted just the ticket – Mamafubu’s promised Pan Asian cuisine which sounded damn fine, and in the nicest possible way, it didn’t look too starch and formal, being as how we were both a tad flushed with the heat and casually dressed.

Their joint in Glassford Street was where the old Peckham’s deli used to be - but the transformation was complete. We could have been stepping into a pitstop in Hanoi or Hong Kong.

Seems to be the trend these days that everywhere goes for a kind of station-buffet clatter plus loud music, and this place was just the same.

But the staff were smiling and friendly, and unfazed that we hadn’t booked. Soon were sitting up on a mezzanine floor with a great view of the bar and the street outside – excellent combo.

The menu lived up to the pan-Asian billing, there was Chinese, Japanese, Thai, you name it. Nothing in the sushi line, but as it makes me and Toots nervous anyway, no problemmo.

Call us cowards but we played it safe with our favourite duck and pancakes to start, plus a bowl of mooli kimchi and a Flower Roll, to show we could be daring too.

A well-chilled bottle of Sauvignon Blanc was all that was needed to make our happiness complete.

“This place has got a good vibe, Tec” said Blondie, fanning her face with the menu. And she was right. Now my ear was attuned, I was starting to enjoy the bustle.

Our starters arrived and our waiter expertly cut up and shredded our duck meat, knives flashing. Good job there were no vegetarians too close, though if you know any salad-botherers, there’s plenty of choice here for them too.

The meat, pancakes, hoisin sauce and sliced onion and cucumber are a well-loved treat for me and my dame, but I’ve seldom known it better done, and we polished of a bigg-ish portion in no time. Blondie’s Flower Roll was improbably large and white, sitting bin a bamboo steamer, and watching her try to eat with chopsticks was, well, quite an experience. She said it was fluffy, light and delicate, and I’ll take her word for it. Kimchi is all the rage just now, and our tiny dish of vibrant orange-gold veg packed way more of a punch than expected, more of a sauce than a dish in itself.

My main course was a Japanese Bento box which was a work of art, pieces of tender pork belly with a crisp crackling edge on a bed of rice with side of pickled salad.

Toots had gone for a bowl of noodle soup which was a vast powerhouse of flavours. She was flicking noodles and broth around so fast I suggested she tucked a napkin under her chin if she didn’t want to wear most of it home.

Our sides of tofu and pak choi, ordered out of curiosity, turned out to be a grand idea, packed with more bright and finger-licking flavour and the feeling it was all somehow doing you a power of good.

We’d overdone it of course, but boy had we enjoyed it.

Maybe if we’d have asked, they had more sophisticated dessert options than those on the card on our table, which seemed to be aimed at the kids, offering the likes of Barry the Elephant figurine with vanilla ice cream. As it was, were too stuffed and called it a night.

Next time, we’ll pace ourselves and save room for something sweet.

Mamafubu, 61-65 Glassford St, Glasgow G1 1UG Tel 0141 552 9798


1 Half crispy duck with pancakes £18

1 Mooli Kimchi £3.50

1 Flower Roll Steamed bun £1.50


1 Pork Belly Bento Box 8.50

1 Korean Kimchi Soup £8

1 Tofu Bao £3

1 Pak Choi in Garlic Sauce £6.50


1 Bottle Sauvignon Blanc 16.95

Total £65.95