Zoltan Szabo returns to Glasgow as Hazel restaurant executive chef at AC Hotel by Marriott

One of Glasgow’s most talked-about new restaurants opened in November 2023.

It's all change in the kitchen at one of Glasgow's newest city centre restaurants, bringing a familiar name back to local hospitality. Zoltan Szabo takes over as executive chef from 8 January at Hazel, the stylish dining room at AC Hotel by Marriot beside George Square. For the last 18 months he has been at Barnhill Farm Shop and Kitchen, before that he was executive chef at Cameron House on Loch Lomond with 5 Red Stars. His time in Glasgow includes leading the opening team at Grand Central Hotel and four years as executive chef at Blythswood Square hotel. Zoltan began cooking in Budapest in his native Hungary before spending two years in Finland then moving to Scotland in 2005 where he has established his reputation as a talented chef.

Craig Munro, General Manager at the AC Hotel by Marriott Glasgow said: “We are incredibly excited to welcome Zoltan to our brilliant team. “The reception to Hazel has been incredible, and we think a chef of his skills and experience will help solidify the restaurant’s reputation as one of the best places to eat in Glasgow city centre.

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“Our menu is constantly evolving. He'll put his own stamp on things - in the first instance with our new afternoon tea offering which we’re launching in January. “

Zoltan Szabo said: I am delighted to announce that I am joining Craig Munro ‘s team in one of the city’s newest and most exciting hotel as executive chef. "I’m looking forward to get stuck in and to continue to share my love and passion for food, produce and hospitality and to inspire creativity within the lovely settings of Hazel."

Hazel opened its doors on 13 November last year, led by French chef Eric Avenier. He left the business before the end of December.

The stylish 100-cover George Street restaurant is part of the £100 million Love Loan development on George Square.

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Themes of nature run through Hazel with the centrepiece of the restaurant a full-size Hazel tree inspired by the Glasgow coat of arms – which depicts the legend of St Mungo – that gave the venue its name. The tree’s branches create a dappled-light effect across the tables to evoke a sense of outdoor serenity for diners.

The story of Glasgow’s patron saint is further told through sculptural tributes to the four miracles of St Mungo, including beautiful lighting in the shape of birds, a bell, and fish. The inspiration to weave the story into Hazel came from the discovery of an original period stained glass window depicting the legend found during the construction of the hotel.

The restaurant's debut menu included Mediterranean inspired dishes with a range of sharing, small, and large plates based around the best locally sourced fresh seasonal Scottish ingredients.

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