Yesterday I went to The 13th Note café – a café specifically for Vegans. I initially visited here to do an interview for a college project and thought it would be a waste of a visit not to get lunch while here.
First Impressions and Service
I had a rough idea where this café was although I had never been before – away from the major part of the cities hustle and bustle on King Street, just near the Tron Gate. Here was a place I had always planned on visiting, so the fact that the interview was set for here was a great benefit to me.
We (my college group and I) walked in and approached the waiter explaining that it had been authorised for us to use space here to carry out our interview, to which he was totally cool with and told us we could set up where ever we wished and allowed us to explore the place a bit. I immediately felt relaxed and welcomed, as no waiter or waitress were at all bothered with us deciding on where to set up camera equipment, this may have been because it wasn’t really busy.
The 13th Note is a cosy but a big enough café with plenty of seats. It is actually is also a venue for gigs which I believe take place in the basement, so it also has a cool, artistic vibe to it.
When I went up to the bar to order my food (you must order at the bar) the waiter reassured me that the chefs were great at making this dish, so I liked his advice and reassurance, once again I felt comforted. My food was then served to me just less the 15 minutes of ordering.
The Menu and Prices
The menu here is obviously all vegan and vegetarian options, so there was no problem at all with lack of range. In fact, the list of meals was pretty long with a wide variety of starters, mains and plenty of desserts. I found that there was a lot more sides and snacks to choose from compared to the first Vegan café I reviewed, Stereo, and I actually understood what the majority of the options were. At the bottom it also displays a food key, so you know for sure whether what you are ordering is fully vegan or just vegetarian, and on this day I wanted to go full scale vegan.
This week, or month should I say, I am budgeting quite a bit, so I expected the 13th Note to be a little more than what I desired to spend, however it was fairly reasonable and I was able to get 2 courses and a drink – a main, dessert and a can of Cola. I can’t quite remember how much my main course costed (which you will finally find out what I ordered below) as it was displayed on the specials board, although £7 odds rings a bell, as this is the average price for most meals on the menu.
My dessert cost £3.25, with a topping at 90p. I can’t remember how much my can of Cola was either as it’s not displayed on the menu, but let’s just guess an average of £1.25. So, overall, my meal would’ve added up to roughly £12. Of course it could be cheaper than this but I thought it was about time I tried a vegan dessert that day. The full menu can be displayed here.
Finally, here is what I actually ordered from the ‘today’s specials’ board: Smoked aubergine and lemon risotto and vegan ice cream with fruits of the forest for a sweet.
I had never tried any type of risotto beforehand, to be honest I thought it was a type of pasta (thank god it wasn’t), but I had recently seen a lot about risotto and contemplated trying it then and never, so today it was definitely calling my name.
Even though this time I understood what most of the meals on the menu were, I took a while to decide because it all looked so appealing. I was close to ordering the Vietnamese hot and sour tom yum noodles, but then registered the word ‘hot’ and knew that it wouldn’t be best for me.
I did enjoy my risotto for the first few bites, but I’m not going to lie, I didn’t finish it all. I ate half of it, to be fair, and my college friends, who seemed to enjoy it, finished the other half. I’m not saying it wasn’t nice, but after a while I thought the taste of lemon was just to overpowering, and it left a funny taste which I didn’t like in my mouth afterwards (I suppose lemon does have that effect).
I thought I wasn’t going to like the smoky taste to it but that didn’t bother me at all, I actually liked it. It was just the drizzled lemon that was to rich and tangy. What did I honestly expect though, after all it did state ‘Lemon’ in its title.
I think other people would really like this meal, although I hadn’t tried risotto before, it did seem cooked well. As for the vegan ice cream and fruits of the forest – loved it. I don’t know what make of ice cream this was or what it was made of or anything, other than it being vanilla, but I thought it was nicer than any other normal vanilla ice cream. The fruits of the forest, which is basically a mix of berries, were also a lovely topping, adding well to its sweetness. I thoroughly enjoyed this ice cream and didn’t expect it to be so nice.
I enjoyed my visit at 13th Note because I felt welcomed and relaxed. I wish I could’ve ate a bit more of my risotto, only if there hadn’t been so much lemon BUT it was still nice and I know a lot of other people will really enjoy this. If you haven’t tried vegan ice cream I would recommend trying the ice cream here, whatever it was! I will most likely come back here in the future, possibly for a drink as it seems like a chilled bar also, and this time I’ll try a different meal that I’ll try my best to finish.
Menu and Prices –
0141 553 1638
50-60 King St, Glasgow G1 5QT