NE1 Reviews: The Shilling
A cosy and charming city centre spot serving classic comfort food. We were delighted to hear about the re-opening of The Shilling by the Quayside this summer, and we're certainly not disappointed when we check in and tuck into their brand new menu.
This is a place that doesn't take itself too seriously. It's cool, quirky, laid-back and combines it's traditional decor with eclectic touches and a vibrant new menu. The Shilling boast a charming spot on Sandhill and its vibrant food and drinks offering includes a few witty twists sure to fill your tums as well as filling your face with sniggles and smiles!
There's plenty to see at this foodie hotspot. Sit outside and watch as the sun sets over the Quayside, or take a comfy seat inside and be inspired by the weird and wonderful interiors. The design and attention to detail is truly dazzling. Creatively combining old and new, original Moroccan tiles introduce splashes of colour against the soft furnishings and wooden tables; while futuristic light fittings, hanging lanterns and exposed pipes bring a contemporary feel to the place.
Taken back by the trendy decor, we're ready to dive into the delicious new menu. The concept is simple; classic comfort food, done good! What your Mamma made you... with Toon twists and seasonal specials thrown in the mix. Everything is cooked in-house and served fresh from the kitchen; meaning if you're dining with friends with allergies and intollerances, there's no problems whatsoever! The friendly faces behind the bar and in the kitchen will meet and greet you, talking through all ingredients and discussing ways in which dishes can be tweaked and served whatever your style, taste or needs.
We're in for a quick bite to eat during our lunch our - but the starters sounds far too scrumptious to miss. We opt for 'The Biggest Baddest Nachos on the planet' (£6 small, £9 large) and fantastically fiery veggie roll (£5)! The nachos are done properly here - tortilla chips topped with slow cooked eight-hour beef chilli, smoked cheese, kicking chilli and drizzled with punchy gremolata. The veggie roll is equally as delicious and packed with exquisite flavours. A full-sized, glazed chilli wrapped in sausage roll-style pastry - yum! This special puff pastry starter changes regularly - a veggie's paradise! Meat-eaters can also enjoy the chipolata sausage roll (£5). Other starters include: garlicky mushrooms (£5), bitterballen (£5), ribs (£6 small, £10 large) and soup of the day (£4).
More home-cooked deliciousness comes with the main course! First up is the flash steak special (£14.95) - marinated chilli and herb flash steak with crisp 18-hour beef bitterballen and banging mustard mash. Meaty magic on a plate - the steak oozes with chargrilled flavours with hints of spice zipping through, while the creamy mustard mash makes our carby dreams come true! Next it's the North Sea fish and chips (£6.50 small, £11.95 large) - wild haddock fillet, dished up with chunky chips, minted mushy peas and tartare sauce for good measure! The traditional British dish is served without the batter on this occasion, to suit the dietry requirements of our lunch date. Served in a sumputous, herby sauce, the flavours perfectly makes up for the lack of batter.
What else is on the menu? Other comfort food delights include: Icelandic-style dog, veggie lasagne, insane garlicky chicken kiev, lazy chef's 'chicken in a pan pie' and of course, Sunday roasts that are sure to seal the deal on a weekend visit! Scrummy sides such as truffle and cheese chips, crispy roasted potatoes, patatas bravas, roasted seasonal veggies, cous cous, funky salad and minty peas finish the foodie experience. Mmmmm, mouthwateringly good!
If you're looking for summer pub food or a bite to eat during your lunch break, expect bacon sarnies, meatball subs, aubergine jacket potatoes and the revolutionary pigs in blanket sandwich - Christmas has come early at The Shilling!
Something sweet to finish? To-die-for desserts will complete the feast. We had to pass on this occasion, but can't wait to return for our sweet fix and a cocktail or two!