Kirkharle Lake and Courtyard is a truly unique visitor experience set in the beautiful Northumbrian countryside, only thirty minutes from Newcastle upon Tyne, Hexham, Morpeth and Alnwick.
Home to a coffee house and restaurant, you can enjoy mouth-watering brunch and lunch dishes served with a range of freshly brewed teas and coffees and a wide selection of wine and beer. Passionate about good food, a variety of home-cooked daily specials often use locally-sourced ingredients…with some even grown on the Kirkharle Estate itself! Also available are a selection of homemade cakes and scones, including the famous Capability Brown cream tea, which was inspired by the most famous of British landscape gardeners.
Kirkharle was the birthplace of Lancelot Capability Brown, the landscape artist once described as the Shakespeare of Gardening, who lived on the estate until he was 23. The inspirational vision of Capability Brown has recently been brought to life and you can now enjoy his birthplace yourself by taking the pleasant walk around the lake on the fully accessible footpath and you can find an exhibition about the man and his work within the courtyard.
Together, with the recent addition of the Capability Brown play area (for children aged 2-9 years) and a series of activities for the kids, including historic games, a nature trail and a large sandpit area, there’s plenty to keep the little ones entertained.
Enjoy a great day out to explore the inspirational landscape, the artist and designers studios within the 18th century courtyard and take the opportunity to enjoy a delicious home-cooked meal or relaxing snack in a beautiful, rural setting.
Car parking available
Credit / debit cards accepted
victorian986, Gateshead, United Kingdom
I visited Kirkharle Courtyard for the first time recently. I visited the coffee shop first with an elderly friend. It was very busy and we we did find that a lot of the tables were very close together and not very private. It took us a few attempts to find the door to the coffee shop. We weren't sure whether there would be table service or if we needed to order at the till. After 15 minutes I decided to head to the till, however then a waitress came to our table. We saw a nice quiche option on the specials board with new potatoes, however after ordering we were informed that they no longer had this quiche available. I ordered a smoked mackerel wrap with a beetroot and horseradish relish and cucumber served with salad and baked potato wedges for £7.95. There was more salad than mackerel and the mackerel contained quite a few bones sadly. My elderly friend enjoyed spanish wedges which were topped with mozzarella and mature cheddar, jalapenos, green olives and paprika salt. We both really enjoyed a drink of Breckland Orchard Posh Pop. I enjoyed rhubarb cream soda and my friend enjoyed ginger and chilli. Afterwards we enjoyed a tray bake. I had a mars bar crispie cake and my friend enjoyed a white chocolate one. I think there were too few waitresses for how busy the coffee shop was, however staff were very pleasant and very patient with my elderly friend. It was certainly a different experience from most coffee shops as afterwards we enjoyed a nice stroll to an arts and crafts shop next door, we saw an artist at work in her studio in another building, enjoyed a browse of a gallery, a jewellery artist's shop as well as a stained glass window and mirror shop. The shops are very unique. In the art gallery my elderly friend sadly took ill and needed to sit down. The lady whom worked in the gallery was lovely, ensuring my friend had water and a seat until she felt better. All of the buildings are very close together so there isn't too much walking. It was a very pleasant afternoon.
Could do better - a lot better.
Martin N Terri L,
Lunch time with Mum. Previously visited 2 - 3 years ago and wasn't enamoured hence some time has passed before this visit. When you take aged parents out you want every time to be a good time because you never know when they won't be with you. OK, Mum asked what the soup of the day was (courgette, pea and mint), as Mum wasn't sure about this I asked the waitress if she could try a little on a spoon or in a small container. She said she couldn't do that - a little surprised and assuming the waitress had misunderstood I asked again and explained further if a small sample was available. She reaffirmed that they couldn't do that. My mum gave the soup a try - she wished she hadn't. No reflection on quality, just a shame disappointment could easily of been avoided. The service was slow, perhaps offering to serve the drinks asap might help. Another couple seated near us walked out after not being acknowledged by the staff or having their order taken. I ordered a 'toasted sandwich' - it arrived untoasted, not a mega issue just lack of attention to detail. This wasn't a great experience and I see no reason to return.
Enjoyable vegetarian wrap
CurlewCorner, Otterburn, United Kingdom
The food at Kirkharle Courtyard varies from sometimes disappointing to sometimes good. I meet a friend there three or four times a year. We have lunch, catch up, take a walk around the lake and return for a cuppa and a slice of cake. On my last visit I enjoyed a very nice vegetarian wrap for lunch. The slice of cake in the afternoon was not so good, dry and overcooked. In my experience, the service is always slow. The setting is pleasant and historic; the service could be quicker and I think not enough attention is paid to the quality of the food served.
Staff who clearly are unhappy and awful stale cheese scone
165billd, Selkirk, United Kingdom
We have visited a few times and never been wowed but things have really gone downhill. First the positives. Attractive building and surroundings. Tables etc all fine. We had nice soup and a decent wrap. Negatives. Staff miserable and discontented. Crazy long waits although third full. A stale cheese scone reheated to try and make it edible. Needs a good shake up and a wee bit of love to make it match its potential
10 middle aged cycling mates who felt like they were not welcome
Bonolee07, Amble, United Kingdom
Before I write this I will add that I am not one for negative reviews...We called in here as we were on a long cycle and none of us had been in the coffee house before and thought it would make a change as from the outside it was very welcoming...that was the end of the welcome as inside the staff were the most unwelcoming and unfriendly we have ever encountered....we are the most friendly bunch and yes we are chatty and enjoy having craic but at no time we were out of order and after one of the lads asked for beans on toast we were met with “if it’s not on the menu then we don’t do it” Truly awful slow service followed and even the food was not very good but that got it the one star because otherwise it would have been zero...stay well away unless you like to feel like a guest under Basil Fawlty.