With the current economic climate in Aberdeen, I'm beginning to feel more and more passionate about supporting local businesses. It's something I've strived to do for a long time through this blog, but with my favourite restaurants (Cue BBQ, Adelphi Kitchen) devastatingly closing their doors last week, I'm feeling more determined than ever. A closing business is not only a loss to the people that worked there, but to the whole community. It signals the end of somebody's dream. Somebody who had the balls to go out there and put everything they had into their business - money, heart and soul! It's such a shame to see it happening and I sincerely hope that by choosing to shop, eat and drink local, we can make an impact and keep our economy alive.
One of the best spots for shopping local in the Granite City, in my opinion, is the West End. It's practically a hidden gem, full of some of the city's best coffee shops, unique eatery's and quirky little gift stores.
I've blogged many a West End café/restaurant in my time, some of the best in the city! No 10, Melt, The Long Dog Café, Foodstory, Malmaison, even Cup have a new West End home! However, there are many little haunts, on Thistle Street and beyond, that I absolutely adore but haven't quite found the time to dedicate an entire post to...
Bagels & Stuff
A New York themed café, specialising in New York's finest delicacy - the bagel! A relaxed and open space, where you can tuck into a whopping choice of eight types of bagels, topped with anything from haggis to hummus! My turkey salad wholemeal bagel was just as tasty as it was healthy! They also do soups, ciabattas, pittas, cake, smoothies, milkshakes... GF options available!
40-42 Thistle Street, Aberdeen
Awesome Mexican street food . Fresh, funky, cool - as authentic as it gets on the streets of Aberdeen! Burritos, tacos, salad, nachos, all the salsa you could ever dream of... Muchacho has it all! Chipotle chicken for the win.
9-11 Rose Street, Aberdeen.
What happens in Cognito, stays incognito! A small independent coffee shop with a first class ice cream offering. They even cater to your four legged friends with their frozen doggy delights, which my pal Cruz lapped up during a recent catch up with Anastasia. An ideal lunch location, which also sells cards and hosts a tiny nail salon at the back! If you like hiding out with your laptop or a good book, Cognito is the place.
39 St Swithin Street, Aberdeen.
Corner Tree Café
The small but popular eatery is beautifully styled, but then what else would you expect from an interior store's café? They do breakfast, lunches and afternoon tea, but you want to try the waffles! Banana, peanut butter and bacon is surprisingly delicious!
3 Whitehall Road, Aberdeen.
Chapel Street's Nova offer some of the nicest gifts and kitchenware you'll find in Aberdeen, while fashion lovers should definitely head to Hamish Munro on Thistle Street for this season's most coveted accessories. You'll also find a wee man cave on Thistle Street in the shape of The Men's Emporium! For freshly baked goods, and the best brioche buns I've ever tried, you want The Bread Maker on Rosemount Viaduct. As much as I love food and fashion, it's the gift and homeware offerings that top my West End shopping list.
Andrew Gordon - The Lean Butcher
Andrew Gordon offers some of the highest quality meats around from his Chattan Place butchery, specialising in lean cuts and catering specifically to the fitness community. This guy has found his niche! His range of ginormous chicken burgers are epic, along with the various Piedmontese beef variations on offer. Squat burger, anyone?
16 Chattan Place, Aberdeen
*Protein bars & chocolate peanut spread NOT purchased from AG! I wouldn't even recommend the Walden's spread to Donald Trump.
Treehouse Gift Shop
Adjacent to the Corner Tree Café, the Treehouse gift shop sells the most aesthetically pleasing, blog worthy goods around! From stylish kitchens, to beautiful shades of paint and all the bits and bobs you could possibly need to make your house a home. How cool is the Harry Potter display at the store's entrance?!
3 Whitehall Road, Aberdeen.
Anywhere that sells Moomin memorabilia gets a thumbs up from me! Another aesthetically pleasing store - everything is
picture Instagram perfect! Homeware, clothing, jewellery, gifts... A little bird tells me there's a Curated Christmas on the horizon. That's one Santa's Grotto you do not want to miss!
54 Claremont Street, Aberdeen.
Slightly further away on Rosemount, Cloudy Blue is well worth the trek for their range of quirky gifts, pretty stationary, partyware and bits and bobs for around the house. The selection of cards is second to none and feature some of owner Amy's very own designs - I was given a Labyrinth print from my sister, which I plan on having framed!
165 Rosemount Place, Aberdeen.
If you fancy a taste of the West End, head over this Saturday 24th September for the first ever Thistle Street Food Market. Indulge in some locally produced treats at the market and take your pick from my guide for somewhere to stop for lunch or a fly cup! Almondine, Parx Café, Coppa and Shake n S'creams are all on my list to visit soon - honestly, even I can't believe I've never been to Almondine! Anyone for afternoon tea?
Where's your favourite place to eat, drink or shop locally in Aberdeen?