To prepare for a day exploring Glasgow’s many attractions or to recover from an evening sampling the local beer and whisky, anyone would need a hearty breakfast. Thankfully, Glasgow is a good friend to the traveller, the student and the flâneur and has the whole spectrum of breakfast on offer.
1. La Patisserie Francoise (Byres Road, West End) – The name sounds fancy but it really just means ‘Frank’s Cake Shop’. This stylish and authentic little cafe on Byres Road offers a nice choice of pastry and Benedictines. Equally worthy is the more upscale Kember & Jones deli right next door.
2. University Cafe (Byres Road, West End) – Almost directly opposite La Patisserie is the greasy spoon University Cafe. It’s amazing. Go in for a bacon sandwich, coffee in a paper cup or a Tunnock’s teacake. This great little ‘caff’ has been present on Byres Road for almost a century.
3. Wetherspoons (citywide) – It seems a little too obvious to recommend a chain pub such as Wetherspoons, either for drinking purposes or otherwise but they open early, serve a good choice of breakfast, offer a decent cup of 89p Lavazza coffee and (unusually, welcomely) don’t pipe loud music into their bars at any time of day. A good location for a quiet budget breakfast in a familiar setting.
4. The 78 (Kelvinhaugh Street, West End) – It doesn’t open until 12:30 but the breakfast options (read brunch) are very good, especially for vegetarians. Full breakfasts with Lincolnshire-style sausages, eggs and vegan bacon. Perfect location to lounge around in sofa chairs after a late rise, glossing over the weekend supplements.
5. The Bay Tree (Great Western Road, West End) – A Turkish cafe/bistro on Great Western Road, most noted perhaps for its Halal and Vegetarian nibbles and strong Turkish coffee, also serves great cooked breakfasts for vegetarians and carnivores alike. They serve a pretty good omelette and a nice range of various breakfast foods on toast.
6. Steak and Cherry (Sauchiehall Street, City Centre) – This late-night cafe bar seems to be eternally open (in actual fact it’s open between noon and 4:30am). It mainly acts as a last port of call for late-night revelers but they serve almost everything you can imagine including hearty cooked breakfasts.
7. Beanscene (Citywide) – This small chain of Scottish coffee houses serves a fairly standard Starbucks-y breakfast including paninis. Their coffee (which uses three shots of espresso instead of a more usual two) is very drinkable. The joy of Beanscene perhaps is their ubiquity: they have familiar and comfortable branches in the north, south, east and west and also Edinburgh, Stirling and Ayr if you happen to be further afield.
8. Tribecca (Dumbarton Road, West End) – A personal favourite, Tribecca serves delicious bagels and Benedictines along with other impressive breakfast options.
9. Berits & Brown (Wilson Street, Merchant City) – This delicatessen in the heart of the Merchant City offers all manner of breakfast delights including bagels, eggs, kippers and yogurts. Seriously high-quality food and excellent coffee.
10. Willow Tea Rooms (Sauchiehall Street, City Centre) – Designed by Charles Rennie Mackintosh, the Willow Tea Rooms is surely the tourist’s favourite. It’s quaint decor cannot be rivaled by the others. They have an impressive range of teas, proper French Toast and a good selection of buns and preserves.