THE strangest thing about Cafe Strange Brew? It’s not strange at all. As far as I can make out, anyway. In fact, looking around this afternoon over a bowl of Turkish eggs with yogurt, chilli, garlic and coriander, I see white walls, white tables and two nice, chatty women behind the counter. So far, so normal. Another woman did walk in moments ago and in the midst of a friendly exchange announced loudly enough to hear over the radio playing in the background: “Oh no, I wouldn’t go anywhere else for my coffee now.”

This being kind of unusual, everyone looked up sharply at that point and stared. Even the two kids at the corner table nose deep in their laptops and free wi-fi. I’m sure I’m not the only person who was wondering if I was witnessing a brilliant crowd-marketing plan where someone is paid to walk in every 30 minutes or so and announce the same thing in loud, plaintive tones. Alas no. It turned out to be simply her reaction to the news that it was after half four, this fresh-feeling cafe was shutting up and she might try somewhere up the road for coffee.

By now, though, I’ve pushed away the Turkish eggs away and am deep into a fattoush that is turning out to be a meal in itself. Back in the day the only way to get a really good fattoush was to brave the spinning disco ball, men in shirts open to the navel and pulsing Europop at Prince Armany’s under Jamaica Bridge in Glasgow. Now that was strange. But brilliant.

Since then I’ve struggled to find somewhere that properly makes the classic middle eastern summer salad – crisp toasted pitta bread pieces soaking up the juices from the lemony sumac, with chunks of fresh vegetables coated in dressing, pomegranate and mint popping through it. It's a meal in itself. As is this example. Whether it's fully authentic I couldn’t say – assuming there is even a recipe for fattoush – but it is very good. On completely finishing it I return to the Turkish eggs. But ordering them was a mistake entirely on my part. It wasn’t until I had forked up some of the attractive chilli, garlic and coriander surrounding the eggs and suddenly been slapped on the chops by a very sharp sensation that I realised that’s about an inch of yogurt all of this is lying on. Ugh. If I even noticed yogurt on the menu description I hadn’t realised it would be so much.

This is exactly what I explain to the ladies a few minutes later as I head back out into a Shawlands that is filling up with rush-hour traffic and am quizzed about why I didn’t finish it off. “It is sharp,” one of them says. “But that’s what I really like about it.”

At this point you’ll be wondering no doubt what the coffee is like given the cafe's name and the previous exchange. Pretty good, I’d say, though not nearly as memorable as the chewy, delicious salted caramel brownie – made on these premises – that I had to go along with it. Yes the salted caramel thing is overdone these days, and no, nobody ever seems to remember that Snickers bars have been giving us exactly the same taste under one name or another since 1930, but this is still excellent.

Cafe Strange Brew, then? Not quite as strange as the chalked sign outside saying: “Keeping Shawlands strange” would indicate. Not strange at all. But in a strip of shops and cafes where only 10 years ago a cafe meant a deep-fat fryer and an all-day breakfast it still feels a little strange to wander in and find somewhere that caters for vegans, does very good salads and has a warm personal touch. I liked it. A lot. Get there before half four, though.

Cafe Strange Brew

1109 Pollokshaws Road, Glasgow (0141 237 4321)

Menu: Organic brunch, vegan dishes, soup, french toast and sandwiches with a wholesome twist (and a very good fattoush). 3/5

Atmosphere: Tidy little cafe which is not in the least bit strange except that nothing is from the deep fat fryer and there’s plenty of homemade food. 4/5

Service: Personal, friendly, chatty and helpful. It feels properly run and the people behind the counter are keen to engage. 5/5

Price: Mostly £6 and under though the french toast with smoked bacon and peanut butter hits the lofty price of £7. Reasonable value. 3/5

Food: The fattoush was good and indicative of the high standards in a cafe where things are prepared with care. 6/10

Total: 21/30