THIS week we're launching the search to find Glasgow's Favourite Business 2017.

The award, sponsored by the Evening Times, is part of Glasgow Chamber of Commerce's annual Glasgow Business Awards, now in their 20th year. The headline sponsor is Royal Bank of Scotland.

Today we look at the next two nominees for the accolade of Glasgow's Favourite Business - Patrick Thistle and Tantrum Doughnuts. Tomorrow we'll feature the final two - and let you know how you can vote for your favourite.


THEY do things differently at Partick Thistle - a philosophy that becomes apparent when you phone the club and find yourself listening to the voice of team manager Alan Archibald.

Alan, who has been manager since 2013, is the automated voice that steers callers in the direction of whoever it is they want to talk to.

The common touch is also apparent on the club's Twitter page - when fans buy or renew season tickets, they get a special, personalised thank-you there.

The Jags are in their fifth Ladbrokes Premiership campaign - they finished sixth last season - and, as the club says on its website, it has become a “quiet success story in Scottish football”.

Entrepreneur David Beattie has been chairman since 2010. “We probably don’t shout about ourselves enough, to be honest”, he says.“When I joined the board in 2007 and we brought some of the other directors in, the main thing we wanted to do was to make sure the club was sustainable, going forward.

“Football, generally, was all about results, but we saw ourselves as the custodians of a famous institution here, and our job is to leave the club better than we found it.

“Quietly, we ran the club as a business: once the overheads were taken care of, anything that was left went to the playing budget.

“We had aspirations to be a big club but first and foremost we had aspirations of having a club. That was quite a journey.

“We quietly did that in the background”, he adds. “We had a long-term plan to make the club sustainable, to play football the right way.

“We introduced a scheme whereby under-16s kids get in free - I think we were the first club in Britain to do that”.

Thistle may operate in the shadow of the Old Firm but many people have a soft spot for them. “If we could get all these people who love Partick Thistle to come to the games”, laughs David, “I think we’d be a lot more successful.

“This is a family club. We really care about the community we’re in. It’s not all about the football for us. It comes back to what I said earlier - we’re custodians of an 1876 institution.

“We support charities, we support the Beatson. It’s very important to us that we do things the right way, and I think that comes through to people. Again, we do it quietly.

“When people come to our corporate hospitality they sing its praises - they feel as if they are part of the club.

“We spend a lot of time talking to the fans, too. I walk round the ground on matchdays and talk to the people.

“A lot of fans, of course, are passionate about Thistle - they live and die by the club, I suppose.

“We have a lot of volunteers working here as well. There is just so much passion here that you feel obligated to do things the right way, all the time”.

The Jags will be looking for another top-six position at the end of this season. The campaign kicks off with an away clash at newly-promoted Hibs on August 5 - and the game can’t come quickly enough for Alan Archibald and his players.



YOU can’t say Iain and Annika Baillie don’t work hard to make their company, Tantrum Doughnuts, the success it has become.

Tantrum, which is based in Old Dumbarton Road, Yorkhill, has made a real go of its doughnuts, which come in a range of imaginative fillings and toppings.

Its brioche doughnuts are all hand-crafted in small batches - and, though Tantrum also specialises in more “old-fashioned” doughnuts, the brioche ones necessarily take a long time to make.

“When we started”, says Iain, “there were just three of us. We had one person in front-of-house but it was just me in the kitchen. My wife Annika and I were working 17- or 18-hour days.

“Because the brioche is a yeast raised dough, we mix it the day before and it proves overnight - it is an 18-hour process overall, which means we have to start very early in the morning.

“At the moment I begin work at 2am and, depending on the day, I can finish at 6pm or at 7.30pm. Now, though, we have a full team of chefs, so it gets a little bit easier, but it is still very hard work”.

A pastry chef by trade, Iain, 29, worked at Gleneagles Hotel and at Heston Blumenthal’s Fat Duck, at Bray, in Berkshire, and most recently at the Ox and Finch in Glasgow. Annika for her part had extensive front-of-house experience.

“I branched off from being a pastry chef, and Annika and I decided to open our own business, making doughnuts”, Iain says.

“We started out in May 2015 by staging pop-up events at fairs and other markets and when the reaction to these proved to be so positive, we took the step of setting up in a permanent location that December”.

Why did they choose to make doughnuts? “It is something that is really accessible to people, and we can offer them at a price-point that means people can come into our shop and enjoy a fine pastry", says Iain. "We are using premium ingredients as we want to make the nicest product we can.”

Home is spread across two properties in Old Dumbarton Road - one the production kitchen, the other a sit-in cafe where people can enjoy a doughnut and a coffee, milkshake or ice cream.

Tantrum offer an imaginative range of doughnuts. Among the flavours are raspberry jam, crème brûlée, and double blueberry and white chocolate - but they also make a salted honey glaze brioche ring, and a candied bacon and French toast glaze doughnut. The lemon & passionfruit-filled brioche doughnut topped with Italian meringue is one has become some customers’ favourites, while STV news reporter Nicola McAlley evidently likes the crème brûlée one, tweeting to her 6,706 followers recently that it, and a latte, made for the “best breakfast”.

Tantrum keeps a stock of 10 different flavours, which it changes as it sees fit and as the seasons change. As berries are currently in season, blueberries are now being used.

Says Iain: “I would say we are very happy with the progress we have made so far. The feedback from customers has been excellent, and there is a very high figure for customers who return here - that is high praise indeed”.

Asked if Tantrum has any plans for expansion, he said: “We’re happy with where we are at the moment, but we are looking at what we can do next”.