THE Moll was feverish with excitement.

I’d promised her a slap-up lunch at one of Glasgow’s best loved Italians, La Lanterna, which has moved into 447 Great Western Road in the bustling Kelvinbridge area.

However, it wasn’t the promise of lashing of fresh parmesan and my scintillating chat that had her in a tizz.

The neighbourhood gossip had spilled the beans about Star Trek actor Chris Pine popping in for a pasta and was hoping for a repeat visit from the hunk.

Judging by that glint in her eyes, I imagine she is secretly hoping he favours a bowl of extra-spicy Puttanesca or Sluts Spaghtetti to those in the know.

I couldn’t guarantee his buff physique but I was pretty sure the attractive little eaterie could deliver on the food front.

The Hope Street restaurant was opened in 1970 by Valerio Martinolli and Antonio Fassone, the restaurant has notched up an impressive array of award wins, including ‘Best Restaurant’ and ‘Best Wine List’ in 2016.

Toots had certainly dressed to impress. The rouge was turned up to 11 and she had squeezed herself into a sequinned frock last seen when I sealed the deal with a rock from Tiffanie’s Diamonds in the East End.

There’s is no sign of any Hollywood Royalty when we arrive but the place is bustling with retired couples and businessmen enjoying a leisurely lunch.

The decor is light blue like fondant icing and pristine, although it’s a little too bright for any illicit rendezvous if that’s what you have in mind.

We are quickly shown to her table by a courteous waiter and the Moll turns pink when he addresses her as Signora, even though in her head she’s still a youthful Signorita.

I soothed her bruised ego with a glass of Merlot that she declared deliciously light and fruity.

Toots isn’t too ravenous as usual so she opted for a Bruscetta Miste, or mixed vegetable bruscetta and a bowl of their finest Pasta Fagiolo or pasta and bean soup.

She declared them both ‘molto gustoso’ and polished off every morsel.

I’m counting the pennies (someone has to) so I plumped for the (very reasonable) two-course lunch deal at £12.95, which is available from Monday – Sunday, 12pm-2:30pm.

I start with the Bruschetta Con Burrata, crispy toast served with marinated tomatoes in olive oil served with fresh burrata and Mama Mia, it’s delicioso. The cool, creamy cheese a perfect companion to the crispy bread and perfectly fresh tomatoes.

For main, I chose the Risotto agli Asparagi, Italian risotto with asparagus, stem broccoli and fonduta cheese cream.

It’s a little on the rich side for me but very, very tasty and I’m struggling to clear my plate so Blondie hoovers up the last few bites.

Suddenly, she stopped mid chew and kicks me under the table. She swears that Italian footballer Andrea Pirlo is in our midst. Certainly the boot she has given me would rival the work of any premier league star.

I’m aware the New York City star is about to retire. Has he taken an early cut to dip his well-used toe in Italian cuisine? I am about to call one of my contacts when I realise it’s Head Chef, Luca Conren.

The food is on the rich side and it’s probably not a menu for anyone watching their waistline but it would be perfect for a special occasion or post-payday treat.

The restaurant also does a nice line in cocktails and we vow to return for a Hendricks Fizz, Gin with cucumber, cracked black pepper, lemon juice, elderflower syrup, lime juice & rose lemonade.

La Lanterna West 0141 334 0696

Service - ****

Food - ****

Atmosphere - ***


Bruschette Miste - £7.95

Bruscetta Con Burrato (£12.95 for two courses)


Pasta Fagioli - £6.95

Risotto agli Asparagi - (£12.95 for two courses)


I glass of Merlot £4.30

Total - £31.70