Restaurant Review: unexpected heights from climbers cafe

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It’s hard to miss the Glasgow Climbing Centre spire towering over Ibrox — a beacon to adrenalin junkies with Spiderman-esque aspirations.

Stll, with the sorry offerings available at most sports centre cafes, we could all be forgiven for writing off The Balcony Cafe, imagining nothing more than bog standard canteen stodge.

After a busy Monday visit to the indoor climbing facility’s excellent cafe, I stand corrected.

The climbers were working away on reaching new heights, the newbies saying hello to the crash mats below — and the other half and I were taking an age to decide on a few dishes from an ever-changing menu.

Chef Liam keeps things fresh with a rolling rota of dishes — once the ingredients are gone, the blackboard is wiped and up goes another meal.

We settled on a Joey Tribbiani sandwich; a classic New Yorker loaded with pastrami, smoked brie and pickles. It was one of the best I’ve had, golden beetroot elevating a humble side salad and a fennel, apple and mustard mix proving that coleslaw needn’t mean mayo with a touch of veg.

With care and attention paid to every aspect of a simple sandwich, this place could teach other, more expensive eateries a thing or two.

The OH opted for a classic sausage and mash next; good quality sausages, creamy potatoes and a fresh take on comforting baked beans — and a heavenly £5.95 for a big portion.

The same went for my nachos; one of the cafe’s most popular dishes, this £5 plate came loaded with delicately spiced haggis, oozing cheese and sour cream and salsa. It’s a steal at the price, and no doubt fuels many a climber all the way to the top.

With Extra Towers only five minutes away, it’s safe to say that there’s a sandwich or two in this reviewer’s immediate future.

However they scale the heady heights of the climbing centre — stairs or the hard way — foodies and frugal types alike will appreciate The Balcony Cafe.

Rating: 9/10

The Balcony Cafe

534 Paisley Road West


G51 1RN

Tel: 0141 427 9550