What do you call a vegan post-punk band? Soy Division! Okay, now the terrible joke is out of the way, on to the review.
Mono is a vegan restaurant and famous within the non-meat eating community, which includes myself - a veggie - and my good friend Laura - a vegan. Vegan means no animal produce at all - so dairy-free, egg-free, and obviously, no meat. Meals out with Laura can be tricky, and the less said about the trip to Spain and the boiled veg she had to endure every night the better.
I call to book a table and was advised the baby disco would be on until 3 p.m. should I want to avoid it. Avoid it? What a stroke of luck, now my tiresome toddler will have something to do while we blether.
The Mono menu includes cafe staples like sandwiches, soups and salads as well as pizza and hot dogs. Laura, a Mono regular, has her usual - the seitan burger. A quick Google tells me this is a wheat gluten, whatever that is, and it’s served with mustard, barbecue sauce and veg and a healthy portion of chips. Despite being veggie for along time, I’ve never knowingly had seitan but upon tasting, it tastes delicious, just like how I remember normal burgers. Bearing in mind it’s been nine years since a cow passed my lips.
I get the nasi goreng, Malaysian style rice with veg which is spicy and cooked perfectly, while Harrison gets a kids hot dog with fries.
The food is delicious and it’s obvious head chef Vic Henderson is passionate about vegan cuisine. The menu is small but still includes light bites, bar snacks and bigger meals. The desserts section looks amazing, and I’m almost tempted by the dairy-free cheesecake with salted caramel and pecans but we decide a pudding at lunch is just too decadent.
While Laura and I have been nattering, Harrison was loving the baby disco.
I expected a CD with cheesy pop tunes, but instead it is a full disco set up with lights and dance floor. Two older kids take Harrison under their wing while he repeats his signature fist pump over and over again.
Mono also houses a record and book store and they brew their own soft drinks on site as well as stock beers from Glasgow brewers Williams Brothers. The venue hosts gigs and club nights and food is served seven days a week until 9 p.m.
I know a lot of non-veggies would be put off by a meat-free menu, but I’d urge you to give it a try. It’s vegan food, but not as we know it.
Mono Cafe Bar, 12 King’s Court, Glasgow, 0141 553 2400, monocafebar.com