Having recently started a job in the middle of Heaton, I have come to believe that this leafy suburb is the most underrated area of Newcastle! Before I started spending a great deal of time in Heaton, all I really associated it with was students, student housing and even more students. I have to admit, there is a large student population in Heaton, but there is so much more to it than that!
My lunch breaks in Heaton have opened my eyes to the beautiful parkland, bohemian coffee shops and second-hand stores, great pubs and the vibrancy of this suburb. When you think about it, Heaton really is ideally-placed: less than a mile away from the wonderful Ouseburn area, and within easy reach of Jesmond and the city centre, Heaton should really be a sought-after area to live, work and spend time in.
I’ve decided to introduce everyone to some of the brilliant things about Heaton – maybe you’ve known about these things for a while and just forgotten, or perhaps you’ll read of things you never knew to be there. Last weekend, I decided to spend a whole day exploring all the curious nooks and crannies of this neighbourhood suburb. Here are my recommendations for a great day out in Heaton:
I have been going to The Butterfly Cabinet on Heaton Road for many years now, absolutely besotted by their mammoth breakfasts, iced-tea offerings and quirky décor (read my review here). While I’ll always return to this popular food, drink and music venue, I’ve recently come across some fantastic new places to head for breakfast and brunch. How many of these have you visited?
- Heaton Ingredient – The sister restaurant of Newcastle’s beloved Quay Ingredient, this stripped-back, no-nonsense good food venture on Heaton Road is little-known compared to other brunch spots in the city. From Craster kippers and boiled egg and soldiers, to giant pies filled with all your favourite full English components, Heaton Ingredient is one to visit.
- The Wild Trapeze – This cosy tearoom, again located on Heaton Road, really is the ultimate place to have a chilled-out, relaxed breakfast. Adorned with antiques, this laid-back breakfast spot serves up some seriously tasty pancake stacks and classic brunch dishes. I can’t wait to try their new iced lattes!
- Lost and Found– If you’re after a breakfast with a dash of luxury, there is no place better than Lost and Found! This 1920s-themed restaurant is a true feast for the eyes, not to mention the insta-worthy brunches they serve up to their customers. Fancy some Wild Mushroom, Prosciutto, Watercress, Poached Eggs and Truffle Oil? Or perhaps some Cocoa Smores Pancakes with Nutella, Biscoff, Fluff and Toasted Marshmallow? This is the place to start off your Heaton day out!
Did you know that Heaton Park is connected to Armstrong Park, Jesmond Dene and the Ouseburn Valley via a number of footpaths and cycle paths? Until recently, neither did I! Heaton Park has become a favourite lunchtime haven of mine – it’s so big that whether you’re searching for somewhere to picnic with friends, exercise your dogs, or sit on a park bench with a good book and enjoy some peach and quiet, there will be an area of Heaton Park for you.
Not only are there several playground areas with trampoline beds, swings and climbing frames for the kids to enjoy, but there are lots of attractions for adults too! There’s quite often a cute little coffee cart by the Pavilion area of the park, serving coffees, milkshakes and little treats. Also in this area of Heaton Park is probably the prettiest of all the Sambuca restaurants! If you’ve never been to one of the many Sambuca venues across the North East, expect tasty Italian favourites for very reasonable prices, as well as cheap and cheerful wines and other beverages. Sit out in front of the Pavilion with a delicious pizza and refreshing glass of wine and watch the world go by!
If you’ve been exploring the vast expanses of Heaton Park, you’re probably going to be in need of some caffeine. Thankfully, Heaton is home to an array of fantastic coffee shops that I have had great fun discovering in my lunch hour over the past couple of months! Here are a couple of my favourites:
- Heaton Perk – I think this boho café on Heaton Park Road has to be my top Heaton discovery yet! Heaton Perk is full of mind-boggling colours, interesting trinkets and record collections, and it serves up some seriously good food and drink. On a sunny day, head out to the sweetest of backyards, complete with fairy lights, for a chai latte or refreshing fruit smoothie.
- Sky Apple Café – Visiting the Sky Apple Café on Heaton Road was my first time exploring vegetarian and vegan cuisine. I was pleasantly surprised! As well as having a takeaway counter full of veggie and vegan pies, wraps and cakes, Sky Apple have a sit-down café that is perfect for an afternoon cuppa.
- Shoe Tree Café – Although the Shoe Tree Café on Heaton Park Road has a lovely veggie and vegan food menu that I can’t wait to try at some point, I’d say that this is the ultimate Heaton destination if you’re looking for a quality coffee or tea variety! Not only are their hot chocolates delicious, but they have so many types of loose leaf tea, hot coffee and iced coffees. Definitely one to try.
For a long time, the only pub in Heaton I’d ever visited was the Corner House and whilst I think the Corner House is perfect for a few drinks in the beer garden on a sunny day, I was thrilled when I discovered The Northumberland Hussar on Sackville Road! This local pub is located on the other side of Chillingham Road and offers customers a fab selection of real ales, gins and other drinks.
What makes this pub stand out for me is their food menu! It’s not often I go somewhere to eat and I have real difficulties deciding what to order because in reality, I want to eat it all! From bar scran to burgers, from pizzas to poutine, I really was in foodie heaven. The beer garden at The Northumberland Hussar is small but very pretty, and the perfect place to enjoy some quality pub grub. In the end, Alex and I decided to share two very yummy stone-baked pizzas, accompanied by some Canadian poutine (wedges, house gravy, spring onions and lots of cheese). What a feast!
If you fancy visiting some of these wonderful places in Heaton, feel free to contact me for more information, and let me know what you think!