Stereo (Glasgow)

I'm still not convinced that Glasgow is the most vegan friendly city in the UK. It doesn't take a statistician to realize that London has more v*gan cafes and restaurants than Glasgow, or for that matter Brighton too. Peta aren't known for being right about many things - perhaps they got it wrong this time too?

What I do like about Glasgow is several all vegan places*, as opposed to mostly vegetarian with vegan options (which may or may not bare any resemblance to the description). Edinburgh definitely fits more in this bracket.

Stereo's a good looking bar in the centre of Glasgow with an all vegan food menu, vegan drinks (Sam Smiths etc) and *the standard non-vegetarian ones (Guinness etc).

Service was friendly but chaotic - it wasn't clear whether it was table service or not. Still, it was good to see an all vegan eatery mostly full on a week night - other cities could do with something similar.

The food itself was alright but could have been better. The menu is focused more around tapas than the usual starter / main course, which is understandable given the type of venue. I chose a couple of tapas items to start then went for a pizza for main:
Vegetable Tempura - crispy battered seasonal veg with ponzu dip - £3.75
Garlic Bread - 2 pieces freshly made with our Stereo baked bread - £2.60
Haggis Pizza - with muhammara (spiced red pepper and walnut), tomato sauce & olives - £8.00
I took the liberty asking for vegan cheese on my pizza - a snip at 60p extra.

The tempura was rustic. A slice of sweet potato, mushroom, red pepper and half a carrot - deep fried in chip shop batter. The carrot was still quite crunchy and it wasn't that great. Rind in the ponzu gave an overpowering, slightly unpleasant aroma and taste. I wouldn't order this again.

The garlic bread's bread was lovely. You could tell it'd been made with love rather than by a machine. That said though it was basically toast with vegan margarine and the very slightest hint of garlic. It could easily be improved with a bit more garlic and seasoning - it's possible I just got unlucky.

I've got to be honest - the pizza could have looked more appetizing. Their pizzas are served 'flat bread' style - i.e. not traditional dough but tasty all the same. The real star of the pizza though was the muhammara, which was simply stunning. Really good flavour with a sensible amount of spice.

It could be improved however (both aesthetically and in terms of flavour) by adding cheese, which ironically I had ordered and paid for but didn't get. If I order this again I'll make sure it comes with cheese.

There was a choice of 3 desserts - 2 cheesecakes and a sticky toffee pudding. I went with a chocolate raspberry cheesecake & icecream for £3.50:

This I also liked. It wasn't on the same level as cheesecake from Dandelion & Burdock, but then vegan cheesecake generally isn't. Personally I'd happily pay a pound extra for a taller slice.

I like Stereo as a venue but wasn't blown away by its food. I may have caught them on a bad day, as it it could be pretty good with not a lot of tweaking. Next time I'm up in Glasgow I'll try someplace different, but would give Stereo another go if staying nearby.


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