Stirling isn’t short on great places to get breakfast, but it is short on places that serve them all day. After trying to make it in time for the (very good) breakfast menu at The Filling Station in Stirling, and missing it by 15 minutes, a friend and I spent a hungry half an hour wandering around the city looking for anywhere that would give us some form of brunch food at 1pm on a Sunday afternoon. Luckily, although probably not for my waistline, we stumbled upon The Fat Cyclist Cafe, which has since become my new favourite place – for breakfast, coffee and pretty much everything else.
A recent addition to city’s cafe scene, The Fat Cyclist is exactly what Stirling’s been missing. It’s quirkier in decor than the other student hangouts, the food is way better and the laidback atmosphere makes it a really comfortable place to hang out in, whether you’re writing, studying or just chilling out. Everything is recycled, upcycled or swapped – from the gymnasium-horse bar stool to the light fixtures made from old bike wheels – and it actually all works together really well. The menu is pretty straightforward; all-day breakfasts, sandwiches and bowls but what they lack in menu options they make up for in quality and presentation. Even though they’re not open particularly late, they’ve got a license and offer up some decent wines and great looking cocktails.
They also have a tasty selection of homemade cakes and desserts and a range of smoothies (the Go-Man-Go is my current favourite) that make it easy to be healthy or not, depending on what you’re in the mood for. The Wi-Fi is quick, the staff are friendly and the kitchen is partly open so if you’re one of those people that likes to see how your food is being made (like me) you’ll be happy.
The first time I ventured in, starving from wandering around searching for food, I ordered one of their full breakfasts (highly recommended) but last week, I gave their blueberry and cinnamon pancakes a go, which were insanely good. My friend went for the salted caramel and banana pancakes, which also looked amazing.
It’s taken over the spot that used to be The Loft, and before that, a string of other cafes/bars/restaurants that couldn’t quite make the Friars Street location work for them. I’m hoping The Fat Cyclist can hold out better than those who’ve tried and failed in the past – I’ve become quite attached to their pancakes now!