Monday 16 March 2015

Lunch and a Movie at the Tyneside Cinema

When Simon and I first started dating I was really pleased to discover that we both shared a passion for going to the movies and spending time in independent cinemas.  I remember so clearly when he first told me about the Tyneside Cinema in Newcastle, he spoke about it with such affection that I was keen to go and he promised to take me there on one of our future dates.  He kept to his word and now the Tyneside is somewhere where we both enjoy to spend quality time together.  
The Tyneside has been a part of life in Newcastle since 1937 and today is the only surviving Newsreel cinema in the UK.  To celebrate the history of the Tyneside you can watch a free Newsreel show every day at 11:15 am or even join a free Guided Tour of the cinema.
I LOVE smaller cinemas, and will always choose to spend my time there rather than in a larger multiplex.  The Tyneside is in a Grade II listed building with beautiful art deco design and has four screens, the largest seating 263 and the smallest a cosy 33.
The Tyneside caters for every taste, showing a weekly changing programme of Hollywood blockbusters, independent films, classic favourites and foreign language films.  It also welcomes people of any age with special "Bring Your Baby" screenings, a discount card for teenagers and day time film club for the over 60s.
Simon and I have a pretty busy month coming up so decided to take some time out at the weekend and enjoy a nice relaxing afternoon at the Tyneside.
We try and take it in turns to pick out films and this time it was my go so I chose, "Suite Française", a war time love story starring one of my favourite actresses, Michelle Williams.
I was really happy that the film was being shown in the Roxy screen as it is one of my favourites.  Seating only 89 I love how intimate it is.  As soon as we walked into the screen I felt relaxed, the screens at the Tyneside are so clean and  comfy with soft squishy seats and plenty of leg room.  I also tend to find that my fellow movie goers at the cinema are far more considerate at the Tyneside - you won't find anyone throwing popcorn, talking or playing on their phone in the middle of the movie.
The film was fantastic and  I was completely lost in the story as soon as it started.   I don't want to give too much away but it was set in a small French village during the German's occupation of France and centred around the romance of one of the villagers with a German soldier.  It was funny, sweet, inspiring and of course heart breaking.  I went through every emotion watching it which is when I know I've seen a good movie.
After wiping away a couple of tears that had managed to appear down my cheeks as the film came to an end we realised we were very hungry and in need of food.   Luckily the Tyneside has the most fantastic newly opened Bar and Café so we didn't have far to wander to find ourselves some lunch.
The Tyneside Bar and Café is one of our favourite places to relax in Newcastle, we especially love Brunch Club that screens free classic movies over breakfast every Sunday.
The Bar Café is very popular so be prepared to play musical chairs if you arrive during a peak time, but it is worth it for the great food and atmosphere that you'll find at the Tyneside.  We were waiting a few minutes to bag a table, but some eagle eyes and quick moving feet had us sitting down in no time.
This was our first time ordering off the main menu and I loved the selection of main dishes and light bites.  As we were at the cinema I decided to order the Hot Dog served with Crispy Onions and Fries.  I wish more places served hot dogs because I absolutely love them and this was up there with one of the very best.   The portion was generous and the sausage was very tasty, I especially loved the crispy onion topping.
Simon chose the Butternut Squash Risotto with Chorizo.  In an attempt to order something a little different to his usual burger, this was the first time he had ever had a Risotto.  He was suitably impressed and had wolfed the whole lot down at super speed, so much so he had soon turned his attention to pinching my fries.
We were both really full after our mains so had a bit of a natter while we let our food settle. I really do love the ambience at the Bar Café, it attracts a very friendly bunch of people and Simon even spotted a few people he used to work with so got to have a quick catch up with them. 
It wasn't long before our attention turned to afters, it doesn't matter how full we are, we will always make room for our favourite course.
I decided on the Sticky Toffee Pudding with Caramel Sauce and homemade vanilla ice cream.  I would never usually order a dessert quite so heavy but I had a feeling that the Tyneside would make an amazing pudding so had to give it a go.  I was right to trust my instinct, my pudding was perfection and I really loved that the ice-cream was made on the premises, it was gorgeous.
We were really intrigued to see that popcorn appeared on the dessert menu in the form of the Popcorn Pannacotta so Simon decided to give it a go.   The popcorn was a sticky mound of salted toffee and tasted so good!  It worked really well with the light pannacotta and is definitely a signature dessert for the Tyneside.
As always we had a fantastic afternoon at the Tyneside and we're eagerly studying the future film releases to see what we can see next time!

I'm also so excited that the Café Bar now serve an "alternative afternoon tea" - definitely something to try!

For more ideas of great things to do in Newcastle, head to the Millennium Guide to Newcastle.
This post has been written for Millennium Hotels  - our afternoon at the Tyneside was complimentary but all thoughts are honest.


  1. I also much prefer smaller independent cinema, they are so cosy and romantic! All the big Odeons in London are so impersonal and overpriced. Great post, as usual :)
    Lots of love,

    SilverSpoon London

  2. I am so pleased you had a wonderful time. I think we might head into town one day over Easter with the kids and sample their childrens menu (esp if they have looney tunes on the big screen like last time). x

  3. I have wanted to go here for so long. The next time my boyfriend and I want to go to the cinema I'm going to make him come with me! Katie x

  4. I really enjoy the Tyneside cinema too. I haven't been in ages but have in the past been to the bring your baby showings... Not nearly as chaotic or noisy as you'd imagine so a really lovely way to get to the cinema with a little one.

  5. I love old independent cinemas too, so this is going on my "when I finally visit Newcastle and do all the things from Chloe's blog" list!
    That meal looks gorgeous as well, love the popcorn dessert, popcorn needs to make it's way into more restaurants I think, I love it.

    Rachel x
    The Inelegant Wench

  6. My favourite dessert is sticky toffee pud, and that one looks pretty damn good!!

    Honeybourne Line

  7. The design in that cinema is gorgeous - it looks really grand. What a lovely place to go.

    Lizzie Dripping

  8. I've never visited this cinema before but it sounds lovely, I'd really like to go sometime. Your dinner looks delicious too, I need to go here! xxx

  9. Both the place and food look amazing!! Great post as always xxx

  10. Small independent cinemas are really great they have lots of soul. A lovely review and the addition of food always a bonus Lucy x

  11. This cinema sounds wonderful (and is bloody gorgeous) - I definitely think smaller, independent cinemas have so much more charm than the huge modern builds. I also agree that the crowds are better in this type of cinema - so many people who go to the cinema now seem to have absolutely no interest in film whatsoever, spending the entire film chatting or scrolling through their phone, so it's lovely when you actually find yourself in a screening full of people who are there to actually watch the film!


  12. Aww this looks like such a lovely cinema!

  13. Food pics are looking really these days Chloe.

  14. I love independent cinemas too - they always have so much more character! And that popcorn pannacotta looks incredible!

    Etta xx

  15. That Popcorn Panna Cotta has me completely sold on going here! It looks amazing! Heard nothing but good things about the Tyneside Cinema too- I really must get along there sometime!

    Eats x


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