Cocktails and carbs – what a slogan! Isn’t that what everyone wants from a night out?
The Laundrette is Newcastle’s latest restaurant and is the first one outside of Manchester, where it opened in Chorlton in 2013 on the site of an old laundrette. Now the brand is spreading its wings outside of the North West and into the North East, with more locations promised for next year.
In Newcastle, the bar and restaurant is near Central Station – between Revolution and The Union Rooms, part of the new student accommodation building. There are still some building works going on outside and when they’re finished, there’ll be an extra set of seats in a covered outside area.
I went for dinner and drinks on Thursday evening, and it was bouncing! Busy with people after both food and drinks.
As the slogan says, The Laundrette is all about cocktails and carbs – and there is a huge selection of both on the menu. I started on the cocktails…
Fancy cocktails are having a bit of a moment – just take a look at the popularity of The Alchemist and The Botanist – and The Laundrette is very much on the bandwagon. There are cocktails with waffles, candy floss and popping candy; cocktails in bathtubs and cocktails that are a twist on the classics.
I had a Wafflin’ On Old Fashioned, which was a bourbon old fashioned with a chunk of waffle in. It’s a short drink, and probably needs drinking fairly quickly so it doesn’t get washed out with melted ice cubes. It was tasty, but I’ve had better, and at £11 a pop is definitely on the pricey side for a drink in the toon.
Onwards then to the Toon Tipple – The Laundrette’s geordie take on an espresso martini, one of my favourite drinks and a better price at about £8 (from memory!). This is a gorgeous drink – made like a traditional espresso martini but with mascarpone to make it creamy and a Newcastle Brown Ale reduction that smells divine. Served in their very own special cup, I am reliably informed the packaging can be customised for special occasions! Definitely one to try.
I was also really impressed with the alcohol free options – there’s lots on offer if you don’t want to drink and it’s not just coke or lemonade either. I didn’t try it, but this milkshake with its own pack of popping candy looked delicious!
This is NOT the place to go if you’re on a diet. The Laundrette is about unadulterated enjoyment of food that will have a negative effect on your waistline. It’s not one for every night, but for a treat or a date night, it’s the place to go for it! It’s probably worth pointing out as well that there are little to no options for vegans. There’s lots of dairy, lots of cheese, lots of meat and lots of fish.
The starters are divine – the garlic bread (£5) was crisp and packed full of cheese (if that’s your bag). The chicken wings (£6) are also some of the best I’ve ever had. They are served in a sticky, chilli and sweet sauce that is to die for. Don’t miss out on them. I’d recommend trying one of the platters to really get a taste of what’s on offer.
On the mains menu, there are pizzas (£8 – £13), burgers (£11.50 – £14 inc. chips), fish and chips (£14.50), lamb stew (£15.50) and more – check out the full menu here. This is comfort food at its best. I tried the veggie pizza with goats cheese and caramelised onion (£10) and it was delicious. Just like the garlic bread, a crispy base is topped with sweet tomato sauce and a generous portion of toppings.
A couple of the burgers came in black brioche buns – I’m not sure whether they were a Halloween gimmick or not – but I wasn’t a huge fan. They were a lot drier than normal burger buns and not nearly as tasty. I enjoyed a little taste of the prawn burger but have definitely got my eye on the beef and chicken options.
We were asked whether we wanted dessert, but by this time, we were all absolutely stuffed full of food! I definitely want to head back to take a look at the menu though. Especially because there’s a 50% off food deal live on their website now (although you can’t use it on a Friday evening or a Saturday). Cheeky after work dinner is definitely on the cards.
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