Here we are into part three of our Chats In The Hidden Lane series, where NHC MUSIC pops out to visit the neighbours in the Hidden Lane and Hive in Finnieston, and we chat a wee bit about other sellers, craftspeople, Tradesfolk, and artists about what they are getting up to deep in the lane! This time our focus is on our brand new neighbours, The Lean Factory, check the chat out below, then be sure to get down the lane when you can and have a visit with some of our amazing neighbours for yourself! Just remember, the best things in life you need to seek out...
Hello there Lean Factory! Thanks for dropping by for a chat on our Hidden Lane interview series! So, new neighbours, why don't you start us off by telling us a wee bit about Lean Factory, and what you guys are up to in the lane then?
Thank you, we are delighted to be here.
Lean Factory is a newly opened healthy food café bistro that aims to deliver nutritious and flavourful dishes to help our customers maintain a diet full of healthy carbs, fats, protein, vitamins and microelements. We intend to ensure that our meals are always tasty, fun and full of goodness. We do our best to cater to everyone and want to prove that healthy and tasty food can go hand in hand.
I think it's important to be clear that we want to appeal to people of all shapes and sizes. We don't just target gym enthusiasts and body builders. At it's heart, Lean Factory is about everyone having access to the right kind of food. I had worked in the food industry for a long time and had a passion for cooking. However, being so busy with work, it was very difficult to take the time to prepare healthy food rather than just taking the easiest thing available, which was often not the most healthy. As a result I gained a little extra weight and realised that this must happen to a lot of people. Busy through the day and needing to take a quick option from the supermarket, it can be difficult to maintain good eating habits. I wanted to make that easier for everyone.
What made you get into the healthier side of the food industry? Is Glasgow on the up these days as far as the healthier side of living goes?
As far as Glasgow goes there is no doubt that more and more people are starting to take healthy eating seriously. There has been a surge in gym membership (especially in Finnieston) and people are becoming more aware of the importance of what they are putting into their body. Still, it's easy to ignore this from day to day and so we hope that we can make it more manageable for people. Glasgow has had a bad reputation for diet and we aspire to be part of the movement away from that.
Finnieston seems to be the perfect place for Lean Factory to open its doors. Was that an intentional move for you at the start, or where you looking at a few places to start off?
There was certainly an element of Finnieston being an ideal location, but at the same time, there are a lot of established, fine dining restaurants in the surrounding area and so there is also a little bit of an intimidation aspect with the location. We were looking in the west end or city centre, as we thought that there would be a large market for what we were doing, but we wanted to be affordable for regular visits. You don't need to be a rosette chef to make yummy, healthy meals and we wanted to bring a more affordable opportunity to this area. We want to be a destination that people can visit frequently instead of always having to pick up a deal from a supermarket. We are certainly glad to have ended up in Finnieston.
What would you say are the most original things you have on your menu? Does the menu change from week to week?
We have plenty of original dishes, of course. Maybe the most stand out one would be our rice salad, made with mango, chili, spring onion, feta cheese and spinach and served with spiced chicken or peppers. We also have healthy fish and chips (not the usual Glasgow version), sweet or savoury waffles and a number of desserts that are full of the right things and taste super. In addition, and this is an exclusive, we are currently working on an interesting home brew to go alongside our shakes and smoothies on the menu!
The menu doesn't quite change from week to week, at least not yet, but it is certainly our intention to change it as the weeks go by and continue to update it. At the end of the day, we love cooking and part of that is about making new things and challenging yourself. To continuously appeal, change is a neccessity.
Do you cater for those of us who are gluten free, vegetarian, lactose free etc?
That's a very important question and we certainly make sure that people who follow different diets are all catered for. Gluten free and vegan diets are very important to people's health and beliefs and so we make sure to have several options available.
What's coming up for you guys then? Do you have any special days/evenings planned? Or are you going to surprise us with some interesting future plans for The Lean Factory?
Give us a moment to get our feet under the table, Jamie. Haha. We have a number of ideas to choose from, but nothing is completely set in stone just yet as far as events go. Don't worry, though, we will let you know in the near future.