The Wee Wolf Bistro – Bringing 30 Years of English Pub Hospitality to Stirling’s Café Scene

6 mins read

12 weeks ago, Mary McMeechan achieved her goal of opening a café in Stirling, The Wee Wolf Bistro. Located on King Street, Mary and her team are serving up climate-neutral coffee, fabulous mocktails, and breakfast buffets at student-friendly prices. Mary has been working in pubs, restaurants, and hotels for over 30 years. She is bringing it all to bear in this project.

When I arrived to chat with Mary, it was just before lunchtime on one of September’s warmest days. After plying me with iced coffee (an absolutely delicious iced caramel latte made with Peak & Wild’s Bracken roast) and getting me sat down, we talked coffee, students, Stirling, and the environment.

picture of pancakes
Buffet Breakfast from The Wee Wolf Bistro 7 -16 Feb. Image credit The Wee Wolf Bistro

Freshers Events

I started off by asking about the Fresher’s Week (7 – 16 September) all-you-can-eat breakfast buffet. For just £10 (£15 for non-students) the Bistro offers a self-serve breakfast buffet. It includes sausages, bacon, eggs, toast, pastries, tattie scones, pancakes, and more.

“We really thought about how we could be part of Fresher’s Week,” said Mary.

Expanding on this, Mary said: “Since we’re not a pub and don’t have an alcohol licence […] we landed on this. We’ve brought the serving dishes out of the kitchen so people can help themselves. We gave a lot of thought to dietary needs and have vegan and gluten-free options too.”

The buffet is limited to two hours per person so you can’t pitch up and spend the entire day there (I know some of you were thinking it). It is also subject to a discretionary £5 surcharge if you leave a plate full of meat or other goodies.

Running a buffet like this is something usually restricted to hotels. It is logistically challenging, so we can’t blame Mary for instituting these restrictions.

“We want it to be a success, for people to enjoy it,” Mary said, adding that if it works out they will look into bringing it back in the future.

Environmental focus at Wee Wolf Bistro

Plus, The Wee Wolf Bistro dedicates considerable effort to being environmentally friendly. Their ingredients are locally sourced, their takeaway containers are made from Bagasse, a compostable byproduct of sugarcane production, and they serve Peak & Wild, the first coffee roastery in the world to achieve Carbon Neutral International Standard. So it stands to reason that they would discourage wastage where possible.

The Wee Wolf Bistro is keen to integrate itself into Stirling as a “flexible venue that serves the community”, said Mary. With a large selection of non-alcoholic beers and other drinks they are excited to be participating in Stirling Cocktail Week (6– 15 October).

What’s On?

The café opens at 10am and stays open until 7pm on weeknights, and 9.30 pm on Friday and Saturday nights.

Hosting an open mic night on Fridays has been popular with local musicians who “love the café vibe and prefer it to playing in pubs.”

Mary said she has started to get people regularly coming to the café from Falkirk and the local area to participate. They are also looking into starting a “café quiz” on Tuesdays, so look out for that to be announced soon.

The Wee Wolf’s coffee & mocktail bar. Image credit: Ali Rees

On Mondays, when the café is closed, Mary is keen to offer venue hire for private parties. They are already planning for Christmas and are hoping to begin taking bookings soon.

What to know about the Wee Wolf Bistro

The café is bright and airy with lots of space and comfortable seating. As someone who doesn’t drink much, I think a venue which is centred around nightlife and community but without alcohol is a fantastic idea. Social events that focus on boozing will always be a mainstay for student societies. However, it’s becoming increasingly common to supplement them with sober socials. Venues like The Wee Wolf are helping to make it happen.

One of the most unusual things about The Wee Wolf Bistro is that they don’t have a fryer.

“We’re in this lovely grade 1 listed building,” said Mary, “and when I looked at the monstrosity of air ventilation required, I thought, I just don’t want that”.

Regarding their bacon and sausages, Mary said: “they just go in the oven. We’ve never had any complaints and people say our food is delicious. Plus, it’s healthier!”

Mary and her team are determined to do what they must to make The Wee Wolf Bistro a Stirling mainstay. They have Wi-Fi (backed up with 4G) for students who want to study and are dog friendly. They also have a play area for children at the back. This comes up frequently in their Google reviews – kids and parents are huge fans. With seating both inside and outside, reasonable prices, and a great location, it seems that they will be a part of the Stirling café scene for the foreseeable future.

Featured image: Ciara Tait

Website | + posts

Student journalist & freelance writer

%d bloggers like this: