Northumberland has all of the necessary ingredients to whip up your dream cuisine. Our coastline and countryside, combined with our proud, local producers and culinary experts, result in numerous outlets serving delicious, locally-produced cuisine. Succulent meat, fresh fish from local waters, traditional afternoon tea, creamy hot chocolates, frothy coffee and, of course, lots of tea, are just a few of the delights that you can get your teeth into.
The Alnwick Garden alone offers multiple dining experiences, particularly as 2019 has seen their new partnership with Searcys as their official caterer. Their reputation for celebrating the best of British produce will shine through The Alnwick Garden’s cuisine, including their re-vamped menu for The Treehouse Restaurant. Here, an open fire crackles and flickers in the centre of the room, rustic, wooden beams, chunky logs and intricate branches make up the interior and fairy lights are interspersed throughout. An exquisite menu, extensive wine and beer list and regular live music all add to its fantastic reputation, and it also acts as a beautiful spectacle for visitors to marvel at.
The Lavender Tea Rooms at Etal are a great option for a light bite and a coffee, particularly for anyone wanting a traditional experience. The bookcases stacked with trinkets, art, brochures and various food give the café a homely and welcoming feel, and you can buy local products to take home with you. Ideally located for exploring Ford and Etal, you can stop here for a coffee break and, on a sunny day, enjoy your drink in their secluded garden.
Although you are cast out into the heart of nature at Kielder Water & Forest Park, there is no compromise on food. A long day of exploring almost always calls for a refreshing beverage and bite to eat, and Tower Knowe’s The Café on the Water serves drinks, snacks and, best of all, creamy homemade ice cream. Kielder Castle Café is also a lovely spot for getting out of the cold and sitting by the open fire, or for getting a refreshing drink after a warm day spent cycling or walking. The snug, family-run café serves homemade breakfasts, lunches, soups, snacks and cakes, and there is a live wildlife camera so that you don’t miss out on any of the action.
For a hearty evening meal, the Boat Inn restaurant at Kielder Waterside is an excellent option, and sits on the edge of the idyllic reservoir which can be admired while you taste local ingredients chosen from a varied menu. Or, The Blackbull in Etal presents an elegant take on pub grub with its appetisingly wholesome menu. The pub can be recognised by its thatched roof, as it is the only thatched pub in Northumberland. Do not let its traditional exterior fool you, as the inside of the pub has been completely renovated with a stylish and contemporary design.
The Inn Collection Group’s restaurants are reminiscent of Northumberland’s pub culture, yet each retain their own style and character. As a leading pub company, they are experts in the field of welcoming pub interiors, seasonal menus, and Sunday roasts with juicy meats and fresh vegetables. Sea food are another of their specialities, especially at The Lindisfarne Inn, The Bamburgh Castle Inn and The Amble Inn which sit on the edge of the astounding Northumbrian coastline. The Commissioners Quay Inn is particularly known for its décor, celebrating Blyth’s industrial history with its exposed hanging lighting and metallic elements. The Hog’s Head Inn in Alnwick is an excellent place to fill up after exploring The Alnwick Garden and Alnwick Castle, offering a succulent carvery on Sundays and an array of specialties during the week.
If a sophisticated spot of Afternoon Tea tickles your taste buds, then you have come to the right place. Along with the astounding heritage that our old country estates and our castles offer, they also serve delicious, traditional Afternoon Tea. Light sandwiches, indulgent cream tea, and local delights like mini stotties are all on the menu at Walwick Hall, and if you fancy an afternoon tipple then Prosecco and cocktails can be enjoyed alongside your pastries. Slaley Hall also has a decadent Afternoon Tea offering, and their quirky ‘Bookcase’ Afternoon Tea option will have you sampling doughnut and dips and freshly made Madeleines served with sweet green tea syrup. Afternoon Tea at Langley Castle offers a royal twist, as you enjoy finger sandwiches in the stone-walled restaurant adorned with drapes, candles and rich colours that really illuminate the regal atmosphere of the 14th century castle.
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