The Gallery Cafe

  • Vegan Vegan
    ( 50 reviews )
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+44-2089802092
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21 Old Ford Rd, Bethnal Green (at St Margaret's House), East London, England, E2 9PL

Cafe situated near the Museum of Childhood in Bethnal Green and is a social enterprise of St. Margaret's House. Offers breakfast, juices, sandwiches, and pizza (has vegan cheese). Hosts a program of live events, art exhibition, live music nights, film screenings, and other events. Actively eco-friendly regarding in particular waste and choice of local suppliers. Became fully vegan end of 2017. Open Mon-Fri 8:00am-8:00pm, Sat 9:00am-8:00pm, Sun 9:00am-7:00pm.

Categories: Vegan, Lacto, Ovo, Pizza, Juice bar, Take-out, British

50 Reviews

First Review by Jemima

Incredible English Breakfast! - Edit

I really enjoyed an amazing full English Breakfast here, complete with beans, toast, sausages, tofu scramble, mushrooms, and a tomato. The sausages and tofu were the best!

Pros: Full English breakfast, Great atmosphere, Good espresso

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Coziest cafe ever - Edit

We visited London with my friend for 3 days and we definitely wanted to have a full english breakfast somewhere. This cafe was close to our accommodation - thank god!
It is an extremely lovely and cozy place, with an aspiring vibe and calm atmosphere.
Not to mention the kindness of the staff and the super delicious food they have.
My heart aches that I live hundreds of kilometers away and can't go there every day.
If you happen to be around, it's a must-try!

Pros: Reasonable prices for delicious, fulfilling dishes, Lovely atmosphere , Kind staff

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good selection of food - Edit

Delicious full English with options of pancakes, potato Rostis, cakes, pastries, hot drinks, smoothies etc.

Pros: good selection of food, delicious

Cons: drinks aren’t served to you, you have to collect t

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Best Breakfast - Edit

Ordered a Superfood Breakfast Bowl and was pleasantly delighted by the yummy combination and hearty portion of the oatmeal/fruit/seeds/nuts etc.
Highly recommend!

Pros: Great food, Calm relaxing atmosphere (perfect for writing)

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I was amazed!! - Edit

All right I will admit it. When my wife told be I would be having a full English breakfast that was completely Vegan I was skeptical. But the Gallery Cafe delivered big time!
The meal was terrific with the only problem being that the large portion size was hard to finish and impossible to push away.
The simple decor added to the cafe's charm and it was a delight to see the place busy with all sorts of patrons from couples like us to young families. While the cafe was busy we never got the feeling of being crowded or rushed. Our meals were reasonably priced.

Our only regret is that since we were visiting from Canada we may not get back anytime soon.

Pros: Fantastic Meal, great vibe, decor and staff, reasonable pricing

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Not as good as it used to be - Edit

Even though it's now fully vegan, it sadly doesn't seem to me to be as good as it once was. I used to travel from far to eat there, the pizzas were delicious and good value, the burger was one of the best with excellent chips. The last two times I've visited I've been disappointed - long wait even though it wasn't busy, chips were totally burnt, burger was not as good as I remember. I went back again the other day for the cooked breakfast and found it pretty average, I could definitely make a better one myself at home. The scrambled tofu was pretty tastless, linda mccartney sausages which I really don't like, no spread for the toast, just dry. I ordered a hot drink but had to go back to the counter to remind the staff to make it for me, even though they weren't busy at all they'd just forgotten. That happens, we're only human, but it just added to the lacklustre feeling of the place, which used to be so good. Even though I live nearby now I won't be in a hurry back

Pros: good location, quite a nice place to sit

Cons: average food, not tasty enough for the price

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disappointed - Edit

I went there for breakfast and ordered vegan pancakes. They were warmed up and not freshly made, therefore were dry and difficult to chew.

Pros: 100% vegan, good location and loads of seats.

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Friendly cafe - Edit

Lovely garden to sit out in during the summer and a great vegan brunch!

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My old haunt! - Edit

This place used to be my vegan local when I still lived in Bethnal Green, and I still stop in from time to time when I'm in the area visiting a friend who still lives right by it.

The food can occasionally be a bit on the average side, but can also be very good, and they often have a range of tasty vegan cakes available.

The venue itself is lovely, with a wonderful outdoor seating for the summer. I've always found the staff to be friendly and the service to be good. Lovely atmosphere, and the added nostalgia always makes it worth a visit when I'm in London.

Pros: Nice atmosphere, friendly staff, mostly good food , nostalgia!

Cons: can occasionally be a bit bland

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great vegan food - Edit

A great spot for breakfast and lunch. Everything on the menu is vegan. Nice food. Good coffee.

Pros: many good options

Cons: the cakes are often not as good as they look

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Disappointed - Edit

As I entered and went up to the counter to ask how they run their service I was told to grab a seat anywhere I like. I did, but it wasn't until sitting for 10 minutes ignored I realised I was supposed to order from the counter, which is where they have their menu. I ordered the gnocchi pesto. It was oversized and really average.

Pros: All the food is vegan, Some of the other people do appear to be enjoying

Cons: Food, Service (maybe) , Cost was reasonable

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oasis - Edit

Fabulous breakfast. Total lifesaver and a nice cup of tea too . We'll be back.

Pros: Great breakfast , outdoor seating

Cons: a wee bit pricey but it's London.

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One of the best cafes in London - Edit

Wonderful place, fantastic garden, great vegan options. Only wish it was open slightly later in the week so I could come more often.

Pros: Great vegan options

Cons: Closes early in the week.

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Great all-round - Edit

My favourite local place. Such a nice atmosphere and a great selection, with some staples and then a rotating menu. Great for breakfasts too!

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Too Basic - Edit

Waiting for almost 40 minutes for my salad, I was hoping for something a bit special. When some leaves and veg were served in a bowl with absolutely no dressing I was disappointed. The cauliflower had some spices on, which were the highlight of the meal. But the rest was so boring - plain salad and cold veg! I'm taken back by the £8 price. The serving was thankfully generous, but wish I had of picked up a salad pot from Tesco.

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My local cafe - Edit

This is my preferred spot to work in my neighborhood because of the size of the place and the friendly atmosphere. The almond matcha latte is delicious! I have only eaten here twice. The soup and bread were delightful. I didn't love the tempeh wrap--it was ok, but didn't have much flavor. I'd get it again, but I'd rather explore the other options on the menu!

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Lovely spot - Edit

Very nice cafe, reasonably priced with a good atmosphere. Went here with a friend on a study break and stayed for a few hours without feeling rushed. Can imagine it to be even nicer in summer when the garden is open!

Pros: Nice location, clean with array of wall art, Breastfeeding friendly , Large portions

Cons: Not completely vegan , Can be busy, slightly cramped

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Hearty Food, Good Vegan Options - Edit

Veggie cafe with good vegan options. I went at lunchtime and tried their classic vegan burger with chips, came with side salad, was very good, generous portions. Steady stream of people while I was there.

Pros: Hearty vegan food, Friendly staff, Vegan cakes

Cons: Can get busy, Needs a few more vegan dessert options

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The best hangover breakfast - Edit

Vegan full English breakfast is perfect after a big night, a nice big warm plate of comfort food!

Very chilled out spot with lots of space, friendly staff and very reasonable prices

Pros: Calm, big space, Full English breakfast, Good price

Cons: Not a huge menu selection

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Great cafe with good food and garden - Edit

Really nice place, good selection of mostly vegan food including the burger I had which was really filling and really healthy with a good sized portion of fries. The place has an amazing garden with seating at the back too.

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The Taste Modern - Edit

But actually not that modern, quite a traditional vegan selection really. The burger was great; the tempeh was pretty good. Nice setting, good outdoor seating, well worth a visit.

FM

Pros: nice seating area, that burger, good vegan range

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Great discovery! - Edit

First the place is wonderful, with a little terrasse and especially nice seating in the light veranda area. And then the vegan choices! Amazing! it was my 3 last days in London, with a friend, and we went for breakfast there on all 3. I had the healthy superbowl, oats, grains, fruit, delicious hemp milk, and also avocado on toast with pesto + tomato, just great. Big portions! We also tried some juices (perfect!) and the hemp milk cappuccinos (id!).

The staff is super friendly too.

Pros: Nice space, Delicious vegan options, Friendly staff

Cons: Closes a bit early (8, kitchen at 7.30 I think)

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Decline and Fall of the Gallery Café - Edit

This place used to be so good. Great, in fact. Years ago it was great, and held a good consistent quality. In the summer of 2015 it improved exponentially from what was already good to something truly beautiful. It was the best place to eat in east London. Beautiful food, jacket potatoes, pizzas, falafel wraps, a huge range of choices, fresh juices mixed whatever way you want it. Regularly rotating curries, multiple specials. then something happened. I don't know what. But it was almost as though they stopped trying. The first sign was the vegan cheese. Changing from lovely VBites stuff (I think) to horrible plastic. Then options started to disappear from the menu. The quality of food itself dropped noticeably. It kept getting worse and worse until it was a shell of its former self. The building is lovely. But everything else has rotted away. It's a big shame. A profound loss.

Pros: The old falafel wrap with all the sauces, Jacket potatoes with vegan cheese, Used to be beautiful

Cons: They don't makethe falafel wrap any more, No more jacket potatoes and cheese, Is now pathetic

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Disappointing - Edit

I've been to The Gallery Cafe a few times as it's near me and consistently find it disappointing. Their burger is bland and they often don't bother to provide vegan dessert options. The last time I went there, however, was the last straw. I ordered the daily special (a rice and bean dish, served with bread) and it came out a mound of white rice with a bit of very bland guacamole on the side (no veg, beans or bread). I ate it without complaining, but then noticed the table next to me got an order that looked suspiciously like what I had ordered - but what I had actually ordered (with the bread and beans), not what I got. When I asked the waitress about that she just shrugged and said "oh yeah, the kitchen got confused and didn't understand what the daily special was". So they had just served me some random slop (honestly in what world is white rice and mushed up avocado a meal??) No apology or offer of a refund or anything. I won't be going back and can't recommend after that experience.

Pros: Nice atmosphere, Outdoor seating

Cons: Bad food, Poor service

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good breakfasts and burgers - Edit

We've been to the gallery cafe a lot, even to celebrate birthdays because we love the relaxed atmosphere.
The burgers & pizzas are lovely, I wish they did gluten free options (even if it cost a bit more) as this has drastically cut down my options here.
We went there for breakfast today. Breakfast was pretty expensive, but very nice. It was nice a quiet at 9am ish and the staff were very friendly and polite. They were able to adapt the breakfast to make gluten free (extras instead of the bread and sauages).
[edit by staff- see ToS]

They've started selling 'Ms Cupcake' cupcakes, which is nice! :)

It can get pretty busy- a lot of table get used up by people using the space as an office/ meeting room. I noticed that they had 'laptop free' signs for the tables now, so I think this is something they're managing.

Overall, I'd recommend, particularly I you don't have any issues with gluten and don't mind a veggie rather than exclusively vegan space.

Pros: relaxed atmosphere , good range of vegan options , themed nights- 'fish' &chips etc

Cons: too many 'mobile office' types , has been rude staff in the past

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Good Cafe - Edit

Some nice sandwiches, good burritos, burgers, pizzas, sausage and mash. Lots of cup cakes and brownies. Everything is vegan. The food is tasty, the portions are OK. Its a bit expensive.

It can get really busy you might have to wait a while. Also some food is only available after certain times like the pizzas, so the menu can seem a bit small after breakfast finishes and pizza hasn't started.

Nice environment.

Pros: tasty food, all vegan

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Convenient, tasty, but overpriced. - Edit

I can't complain about the quality of the food, it's great - however I'm not so sure about their prices, especially as this is in Bethnal Green, a deprived part of the East End.

Veganism is the future; it has to be for the sake of the animals and the planet, and while restaurants like this price out the local working class East Londoners the veganism will always seem as an elitist option.

It's not about the people or the cliques, veganism is about the animals and should be accessible for everyone - so I urge you to think of this when setting your prices!

Pros: Tasty food, Friendly staff, Nice location

Cons: Expensive, Not vegan, A product of gentrified East London

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