Friday at work my mind was drifting to a weekend of child-free fun. The girls were heading off with my parents to the Blackpool seaside for the weekend to ride the rollercoasters at the Pleasure Beach. I had a more relaxed weekend in mind. A nice meal out, long lie in, and some party planning (OMG I still can’t believe Alan will be 40 soon!). It’s all rock n roll around here. Now, where were we going to eat on our date night?
Dobson & Parnell
As the Late Shows was taking place we decided to head to the Quayside for a meal and then wander along to the Ouseburn. There are so many options in this area but Dobson & Parnell is somewhere we have been wanting to try for a while. Located in the former Terry Layborne’s iconic address 21 Queen Street the restaurant has been under a few names over the years. We actually went on a date night many years ago in its former guise Pan Haggerty. For the last year or so it’s been under the helm of the Andy Hook’s Hooked-on-Group which also include Blackfriars and Hinnies.
The interior of Dobson & Parnell is what you would call understated and classy. Think white tiles, leather seats, and funky Victorian-esque light shades. As the restaurant was named about two famous Newcastle architects the interior gives a nod to the city’s historic past.
Daily Set Menu
There are a few different menus on offer at Dobson & Parnell. There’s the A La Carte for a real treat. A seven-course Tasting Menu which looks amazing. And for the budget-friendly option the Daily Set Menu which is available 12-2.00 Tuesday-Sat, 5.30-9.30 Tues-Thu & 5.30-7.00 on a Friday.
As most of you know my husband from the blog you can guess which option we were going for! To get there before 7pm we had to hot foot it into town. We did manage to grab a quick drink in the roof bar of the nearby Bridge Tavern. What a cool pub this is! Seriously the Quayside has really upped its game with this little hipster gem! Think we need more date nights.
Cocktails & Starters
As we were showed to our table, we were offered a cocktail from the menu to kick things off which went down well. Mojito for Alan and a fruity rum based concoction for me. They were both pretty strong and full of flavour.
First up was a cod roe amuse bouche which came with a fresh & warm from the oven bread basket.
To accompany our food we went with the wine pairing. Each course was paired with a suitable wine to accompany the dish with a description of the wine. This is where our waiter came into his own. There’s no way I would have remembered all of this information! Of course, I have no clue writing this a few days later but remember the keywords….fresh, acidic, Spanish, Portuguese… I have no idea what I actually drank! But it was all lush.
Alan chose ‘feta and watermelon, avocado, mint, coriander, toasted sesame’.
Myself the ‘wild garlic and potato soup’. All very tasty. Then it was onto the mains…
Main Courses at Dobson & Parnell
Alan went for the roast corn-fed chicken with spelt risotto.
I had the pan-fried black cod, mashed potato, leeks, house-cured bacon.
Both dishes were so tasty and cooked to perfection. I love that they produce their own bacon and that in this kitchen everything is seasonal and fresh. You can tell that the chefs are given free reign to come up with something creative in this kitchen.
To finish our meals I went for the chocolate mousse with toffee sauce.
Alan the creme brulee with biscotti.
These dishes were almost too pretty to eat, but we managed no problem. The mousse was rich and along with the nuts was a perfect end to a fantastic dinner.
Dobson & Parnell
Our evening meal was £25 per person for the food, £10 each for the wine pairing, and £8 each for the cocktails. Bringing the total to around £100 including a well-deserved service charge.
Dobson & Parnell certainly isn’t the cheapest option on the Quayside but I think it’s a fair price for the level of comfort, service and local, seasonal food. I’ve since found out that they do a nice looking children’s menu so maybe we could take the girls one day.