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Global Tribe Cafe

  • Vegetarian
    ( 24 reviews )
Contact 01132461824
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18 Swan St, Leeds, England, LS1 6LG

A vibrant vegetarian cafe located above a crystal shop and has a separate entrance. Has vegan, gluten-free, and raw food including vegan raw cakes. Some dishes can be made vegan on request. Dairy milk and spread used but customers are always asked for their preference.

Category: Vegan-friendly, Lacto, Ovo, Raw, Western, Take-out, British, English

Reviews (24)

First Review by TeaPea

Small Space, Big Food - Edit

Known by many locals as 'the Hippy cafe' Global Tribe is something of an institution. I've been going here for years and on a trip into town my partner and I are almost guaranteed to have the debate 'global tribe or roots & fruits?' Situated above a crystal shop of the same name Global Tribe serves some of the best food available in the town. Offering Vegetarian or Vegan options and a whole host of drinks you are always spoilt for choice.

The main meals are hearty and on a recent visit I discovered the vegan beans and cheese on toast. Have it on granary. Its amazing. The only downside to this place is its popularity. If you're visiting on a weekday it is very difficult to get a seat. Around lunchtime you might as well not bother. It's 'first come first served' and if you don't get there early there's no chance. Over time we've started to avoid lunch completely and go much later in the day. This seems to work well. Being upstairs means that you can't see how busy the place is from the street. This means that while you're sat you may experience a sudden draft as the door is opened at the bottom of the stairs. Not a problem in summer but in the winter this can be perishing (especially if an inconsiderate punter leaves the door open).

So in summary: Avoid lunchtimes and make sure you're hungry because the food and the service are superb.

Pros: Excellent Food - The vegan milkshakes are especial, Friendly and fast service

Cons: Almost impossible to get a table at peak times


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Served me food with cashew nuts in, despite telling them I am allergic to them! - Edit

I have heard good things about Global Tribe so was eager to try it. However I was incredibly disappointed. Firstly, my boyfriend ordered a burger with no salad or sauce. It came with all the salad and sauce just with no bun, we explained to the waiter "I think you've a misunderstood, we said a burger in the bun, just with no salad or sauce". They then brought it back to us in the bun... But with salad and sauce. The waiter was quite unhelpful and not very friendly. He was obviously English and spoke well so it's not like there was a language barrier.

The worst thing that happened was that I explained to the waiter than I am allergic to cashew nuts and he assured me that the burger did not contain any and also checked with the kitchen staff. So I ordered the burger and when it came I ate some of it and started having an allergic reaction (I am not severely allergic, thank goodness, but it meant that my lips and throat were swollen for about an hour afterwards and I had crippling stomach pains all day). Turns out that the burger actually did have cashew nuts in it. They gave us our meal for free, but I was very hungry and my reaction meant that I couldn't eat anything for a good few hours and it ruined my day completely.

Also, non of the waiters/kitchen staff wear hair nets and there were at least two hairs in my food.

Pros: To be honest, I can't think of any

Cons: Unfriendly and not very helpful staff , Didn't serve us what we ordered , Clearly not considerate of people with allergies


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Price/ quality is not great - Edit

The cafe has nice smoothies and it's in the centre of Leeds. Unfortunately I didn't enjoy my food too much and found it a bit pricey, and so did my friend.

Pros: Location, Smoothies

Cons: Overpriced, Food, Place is small and packed


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Recommended - Edit

I had the burger here which was great, the kale chips were also amazing. It was good food for a good price and I'd highly recommend a visit. The atmosphere was nice and friendly. Plenty of vegan options. The cake was to a high standard!

Pros: Good food, Nice atmosphere


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Lovely food- if they have it! - Edit

Went here for the second time last weekend, it always seems busy- which is a good sign! Staff are lovely and laid back. Friendly atmosphere. Unfortunately they had run out of a lot of options on the menu so I opted for the curry although I had wanted to try something new; but I did enjoy it. Plenty of vegan options and the best iced coffee, also, nice selection of tea


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Great little place! - Edit

Fantastic range of options, good quality food, reasonably priced, friendly and helpful staff. I'm vegan and I often feel I'm troublesome but not here. I arrived recently on a rainy day with a group of 9 and they had no trouble seating us even though the place is small.

Pros: Excelent food, Really friendly waiter!, Lovely place


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Interesting & tasty food - Edit

Have been a few times now and always enjoyed the food. Only complaint would be that they seem a little bit disorganised, for instance on one occasion they didn't have a dish one of our party ordered but they didn't actually come to tell us this for a long time after we'd placed the order. The kitchen staff seem a little bit TOO relaxed and unhurried! Which is nice in some respects but slightly annoying when you're waiting for food and you can see them standing around not doing much :)

Pros: Delicious healthy food, Great for "raw" food

Cons: A bit disorganised & laid back!


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Lovely stuff - Edit

My friend and I came here for lunch and we're not disappointed!! The staff were welcoming and friendly and the cafe itself was bright and clean.
We got the full English breakfast which was very nice indeed and which came with a choice of milks for the refillable tea! I also got a vegan carrot cake to take away. Really lovely cafe! Will definitely be back soon!


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Cute and quirky - Edit

Hidden away unless you know where to look, great little menu.
I've only eaten lunch here but it was lovely.

They have a great choice of cakes. Mmmm...cake.

Pros: Independent, Good value


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Lovely place, interesting menu - Edit

I eat here regularly - the menu is more creative and interesting than most other veggie cafes. The food is very reasonably priced also. It's also busy when I'm there, which is a good thing of course, but wish they could expand it somehow! :)
Updated from previous review on Sunday December 14, 2014

Pros: Loads of vegan options, Interesting menu, Great prices

Cons: A bit squashed for room!


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Great! - Edit

I have only eaten here once, but will go back again at some point! Good food, nice environment! It's close to the Leeds City Varieties theatre and is perhaps the most central (location wise) of all the vegetarian cafe's in Leeds.


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Great café in the centre of Leeds - Edit

This café was my first restaurant in Leeds, and I really enjoyed the experience. The location is central and easy to find, the place is fun and pleasant and the staff is friendly and helpful.

I had lunch here and ordered the soup of the day (that was made of lentils, carrots and oranges) served with delicious bread slices and vegan butter, the caramelized red onion and zucchini pie with roasted vegetables on its side (excellent taste!) and, since I've found portions relatively small, I finished with their raw portobello burger. This one was really good even if I'm not very fond of raw food. I also had a beautiful strawberry vegan shake and I took a great cake to take away. On the whole, this place is one of the best for vegan in Leeds!

Pros: plenty of vegan options, great choices, good food and pleasant place, friendly staff, central

Cons: small portions


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PERFECTION - Edit

This place is almost perfect. There's a big variety of vegetarian, vegan and also raw options-in my opinion the best ones. I've been there three times and everytime went out satisfied. The best thing I've eaten was a raw rasperry cake- LOVE. Generally, everything seems to be healthy, done with passion, nicely served,the waiter (owner?) is also lovely and helpful. Good atmosphere as well. Definitely worth visiting if you're in Leeds.
Can be pretty hard to find as you can't enter it straight from the main street.
Updated from previous review on Thursday August 22, 2013


Pros: excellent food, friendly stuff, good location-centre

Cons: sometimes there are no cakes left :), can be hard to find


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Food hygiene - Edit

Called in for breakfast with my daughter. The lady who took our order was friendly and efficient, the atmosphere was nice, the cakes on display looked yummy. Other reviewers have praised the cakes and lunches and certainly the photos look good.
But avoid if you want a nice breakfast. The sausage sandwich was a leathery, bland, commercially produced tvp sausage in two giant slabs of dry old granary bread. The teacake was similarly commercially baked with no taste and little fruit. Orange and apple juice both uninspiring and served from glass bottles.
I recommend a food hygiene course. Both women working in the kitchen, which is in full view in an open plan room, had hair flying all over the place but neither wore hair nets or caps. No-one wore protective gloves or aprons while handling food, despite breaking off from time to time to handle money. One even took a break to remove and re-apply her lipstick and went straight back to work without washing her hands.

Pros: Friendly staff

Cons: Very poor standards of hygiene, Unimaginative, bland breakfast menu


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Good cakes! - Edit

Catch this place at the right time and they have up to 8 vegan cakes!! Makes sure you arrive before 5pm if you anything more than cake though as they stop doing food at 5 even though it stays open till 6pm. Also they have a tendency to run out of some choices on the menu. Otherwise a nice place with friendly staff and facilities. (not wheelchair accessible)

Pros: not expensive, vegan cakes

Cons: closes for food at 5pm


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Great little veggie café - Edit

This little gem is somewhat hidden in the back streets of Leeds city centre, but is easily found by looking for the signs for City Varieties Theatre (it's on the same street).

I've visited several times and never had a bad meal. The menu changes regularly and there's a specials board too. There's everything here from fresh soup and veggie burgers through to beetroot meatballs with courgette and carrot noodles. There are usually 2-3 raw food options too - not just glorified salads, but inventive dishes like raw lasagne (with "sheets" of courgette).

The staff are very friendly, they know what is in the dishes, and can even point to the person in the kitchen who made them. Service is usually quick, even at busy periods, but there's sometimes a wait for a table. It's worth it though.


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friendly and vegan friendly in the heart of Leeds - Edit

I have actually been here loads but only just thought to do a review! always have a visit for lunch when i'm in town, they have really good sandwiches and cakes in particular and lots of cold drinks- perfect in the sun.
The staff are always amazingly friendly and welocming.

Cons: can get busy at lunchtime


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Something special - Edit

Very modern veggie/vegan/raw food. Had 'meatballs' with courgette 'pasta'. Lovely fresh flavours. Vegan cake to finish. Great choice of drinks. They do themed evening openings too.

Pros: New, Exciting


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An excellent addition to Leeds. - Edit

There are many different vegan options available at this relatively new cafe in Leeds. I particularly like the vegan cheese on toast and the excellent cakes with a coffee.

There are lighter dishes available as well as more substantial mains. The raw desserts are well worth a try.

Pros: Central location, Variety of vegan food, Cake

Cons: Can get pretty busy at peak times.


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City centre stop-off. - Edit

Global Tribe is a small upstairs eatery. Their food mainly consists of small dishes, wonderful sandwiches, amazing salads, a selection of hot dishes as well as coffees, teas and cakes. Very vegan friendly. Staff are wonderful, everything is fresh, no negatives at all. Amazing addition to Leeds city centre.

Pros: fresh, friendly, value


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Really good quality healthy food! - Edit

Amazing for raw foodists out there or anyone in need of vitamins and healthy food! you'll feel energised after eating at the Global Tribe Cafe. I had a raw pizza and spaggethi bolognaise with "meat" balls, pasta was made of courgette of course, then for desserts the chocolate mousse made with dates and strawberry coulis and the lemon tart made with cocoa butter! Yum yum yum in our tum! Really worth visiting if you're in Leeds!!!

Pros: central, healthy, Raw!


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Great cafe in the heart of Leeds - Edit

Just a note on location first - it isn't inside a crystal shop it is above a crystal shop and has a separate entrance.
This cafe is a great addition to Leeds and there is plenty to tempt anyone (veggie or otherwise). The environment is great - very clean, good background music, friendly staff, great decor. You can see into the kitchen where delicious food is freshly prepared. Great coffee. Loved it!

Pros: fresh delicious food, clean and attractive environment, varied cafe menu

Cons: stairs appeared to be the only way to enter so not


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