Saturday 1 February 2014

The Living Room

Most Friday evenings you will find me snuggled up in my PJs catching up with some trashy TV.  But every now and again it's nice to end the week with date night and with Restaurant Week on this week it gave us the perfect excuse to put on our glad rags and hit the Toon.

The weather on Friday was particularly nasty, as I left work at 5:30 pm the rain was thrashing down and the wind was so strong that my heavy duty man sized umbrella blew inside out on the Millennium Bridge.   Usually the thought of going straight back out would not appeal to me on a night like that.  But with the promise of a cosy night in one of my favourite restaurants, the Living Room I knew I could find some energy to throw on a dress and head back out the door.

With my list of restaurants to visit in Newcastle getting longer and longer by the day  I'm pretty strict on not allowing myself to visit the same places too often but I have to make an exception when it comes to the Living Room as we love it so much.  It seems to have become our "go to" place when entertaining guests visiting the North East.  So far  I've taken one of my best friends and sister there for drinks and some of Simon's family for a Sunday Comforts Roast.

Friday nights dining in the Living Room are extra special as your food comes accompanied by some live music, which is just the perfect way to dine.  We spent our evening listening to some wonderful classic tunes played on the piano and I absolutely loved the atmosphere it created, the music really added an extra touch of glamour to our evening.

We kicked off our evening by having a look through the cocktail menu which really is a must when you go to the Living Room as it's a bit of a treat, so much so it's almost impossible to come to a quick decision on what to pick. 

The menu takes you on a journey to the four corners of the world including "the Rising Sun" oriental cocktails from the Far East and "the American Dream".   This time however I was torn between the rum based cocktails listed under "Tales of the Caribbean" and the drinks listed under Quintessentially British.  After changing my mind several times I opted for a Summer Breeze as I felt like something sweet and fruity.  It was definitely the right decision as it was absolutely delicious.

I've already given myself a good excuse to go back for a Cocktail Night as each page of the menu features sharing cocktails that look very tempting.  Who wouldn't want to get together with friends over a Gin Picnic served in a hamper or a rum based cocktail served in a barrel?

Now on to the important part, the food.  The Restaurant Week offer was 2 courses for £10 or 3 courses for £15.   We decided to go for the 2 courses, mainly because I was eager to be able to fit my dessert in at the end of the night.

Here's where I have a bit of a confession that will probably make the foodies amongst you disown me.   Before my trip to the Living Room I had never ever tried steak!  As a youngster I wasn't a big fan of meat and was always very fussy about it being too fatty or tough and chewy therefore  I've never felt brave enough to order it in a restaurant as I'd convinced myself over the years that I wouldn't like it.

I think I have my Summer Breeze to thank for enabling me to be brave this time and order the steak frites.  I opted to have it cooked rare with peppercorn sauce.  I'm so thankful that I chose it because it was delicious and I am happy to report that I'm now a fan of steak.  It was so beautifully tender that suddenly my fear of steak had vanished. 

Simon chose the TLR burger, which came with bacon, cheese and burger sauce (which I will admit I did my dip my chips in because I'm cheeky like that!)   Simon is a bit of a pro when it comes to burgers, and as he woolfed it down in record speed I think it's safe to say he really enjoyed it.

My favourite part of any meal is always going to be the dessert.  I chose the Eton Mess and it was a perfect bowl of gooey sweet mess.  Simon opted for the sticky toffee pudding which is one of his favourites, it looked fantastic so I made sure I attacked his dessert with my spoon before he'd got the chance to devour it.  It was very good, really warming and rich - perfect for a wet Friday evening in Newcastle.

Having spent most of January hiding away it was lovely to spend such a relaxing evening together and it was one of the nicest evenings out that  I've had since moving up to the North East.  

Make sure you have a little look at the website here, and see if there's a Living Room near you.  Let me know if you've been to any of the other restaurants as I'd be interested to hear what they're like.   Also if anyone's ever had the Afternoon Tea please let me know as I'm very tempted to give it a try.

I was invited to dine at the Living Room and received a complimentary meal . However all thoughts are my own.

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