Today was the first day I ate lunch as a vegan. I went to the café/bar, ‘Stereo’, accompanied by my friend Chris – who also recommended here to me, and I can safely say I was pleasantly surprised. I ordered the ‘Crispy Gnocchi’, which I had absolutely no idea what that even was until a few hours ago. So here is my very first review –
First Impressions and Service
Before eating in Stereo, I was feeling a bit apprehensive that my food was going to be bland and I was going to leave unsatisfied and hungry – but I was wrong. When I stepped through the door I could smell the food and that feeling had gone. Instead of feeling like I was going to be wasting money on food I didn’t like, I was actually looking forward to a healthy lunch for a change instead of my usual Nandos…. (I still love you Nandos).
I was expecting Stereo to have hipster decor with grungy wall hangings but it was mainly posters advertising upcoming events as the café also hosts gigs, comedy nights, etc. I was also expecting a hipster scene of customers inside, but I was wrong about that as well, it was just normal customers and me being stereotypical. However the waitresses did have a hipster look about them.
Chris and I were greeted and seated immediately. The only negative comment I would say about the service was that we waited a little bit for our order actually to be taken, but this could simply have been because I looked so confused over the menu. Our food was served within ten minutes of ordering so this made up for the negative point.
Menu and Prices
I had to look over the menu a good few times as I didn’t know what any of the meals actually were – this is obviously because I don’t normally eat from a vegan menu. I felt quite ashamed I couldn’t even pronounce ‘Falafel’, never mind know what it was (I am educated now).
I considered just getting the soup of the day which was sweet potato to be safe but then I remembered the whole purpose of me being here was to step out of my comfort zone. I realised it didn’t really matter what I ordered because I didn’t know what any of it was so I picked a meal at random and ended up with the ‘Crispy Gnocchi with Sausage and Tomato Sauce’, and a glass of water.
In total my meal came to £8.00 – I thought this was a fair price and within my budget, especially when I saw the size of the portion. Chris ordered ‘Shamuchan’ which came to £8.25, again, a very reasonable price as his portion was massive. Looking over all the meals on the menu – tapas, main courses, and desserts -, they were all reasonable prices which can’t really be grumbled over especially if it is good value for the money.
There is a good range of meals, if you are only wanting something small there is a nice range from the tapas side such as spring rolls and just chips, all only £3.95 or some just £2.95, as well as a good range of main courses.
I honestly didn’t know what to expect when my meal was served to me as I had no idea what ‘Crispy Gnocchi with Sausage and Tomato Sauce’ was, but I was so pleased to see it was just like little pasta shells in a tomato sauce.
It actually turned out that Gnocchi isn’t pasta, it is in fact dumpling. I’m still not sure about this – I could be wrong and it might actually be pasta, nonetheless, it was still tasty. It was served with vegan sausage in a spicy tomato sauce (like it stated on the menu), garlic bread which I first thought was toast, and salad.
The salad dressing was so lovely, if I had known it was so nice I would’ve ordered a salad. I wasn’t too keen on the vegan sausage, I tried to eat it altogether with the Gnocchi but it just tasted and looked like cardboard and was really thin, so I ended up picking the sausage bits out and eating the Gnocchi and spicy sauce on its own. I’m surprised I managed to eat the spicy sauce because I’m not good with anything the least bit spicy, but this was bearable and gave it a nice flavour.
I couldn’t manage to finish the meal because it was so filing, which I’m happy about because like I previously said, I thought I would be leaving still hungry. I had a few chips from Chris’ plate which were delicious hand cut potato pieces which I would certainly order next time. The meal I ordered can also be served with ‘zesty artichoke sauce with black olives, capers and toasted walnuts’, but I don’t like olives so that was an instant no.
To conclude my first review of the vegan café/bar, Stereo, I am pleased that I visited here first. I thoroughly enjoyed my meal, it was very yummy and something that I would order again, however the next time I visit I would like to try a different meal. I enjoyed the atmosphere, I felt very relaxed, there was no rush and it wasn’t too loud. Because of my good experience here, I feel that I won’t feel so apprehensive when I visit my next café, as I was pleasantly surprised.
Menu and Prices – 10/10 (good prices and range)
0141 222 2254
22-28 Renfield Ln