We have been itching to go to Colmans Seafood Temple since it opened last Summer. Located in the iconic Ghandi’s temple (a former bandstand come public toilet!) near to Gypsy’s Green stadium, the finish line for the Great North Run. The Colmans’ brand is strong in South Shields dishing up fish and chips to South Shields residents for over 90 years.
Colmans in South Shields
Ever since my parents moved to South Shields they have declared their Ocean Road shop to serve the best fish and chips! They are not alone in their high praise and Colmans have won numerous best ‘Fish and Chip’ awards over the years. Colmans even made the national press a few years ago with the length of their queue on Good Friday. The queue stretched all the way down the length of Ocean Road.
Alan was given the job to work on the signage in his day job so it’s nice to give back to a local business who supports your own. The building really is a thing of beauty with a gorgeous exterior and interior…and the signs are canny too!
Bank Holiday Monday in South Shields
My Mam had the foresight to book a table for us all at Colmans on Bank Holiday Monday and we were pleased she did. It seems like the whole of the North East had decamped to the coast to enjoy the good weather. Earlier on the day, we could barely get a spot around the 2p machines in the arcade. As we headed up to the Temple there was a great vibe on the prom. Beer gardens were full and live music from local band Rivolinos pumped out from the next door pub The Sand-Dancer. If only we could guarantee sunny weekends like this for the rest of the summer.
Bookings aren’t taken on a lunchtime but you can from 5pm. This time was perfect for us as we needed to get back home to Newcastle for school and work the next day. Our party consisted of us four, my parents and my Nana Betty. My Nana at nearly 80 years old, has mobility problems so we were pleased to see an accessible lift to gain access to the restaurant which is located on the first floor.
Drinks at the Bar in Colmans Temple
As we waited for our table we decided to order a drink at the bar. There was loads of choice from lagers, wine and cocktails. We decided to get a bottle of the house Georges DuBoeuf white (£16.95) to set the tone for the fish dishes. My Dad had a Schooner of Moretti (3/4 of a pint £3.96)) which was new on him. Girls and Alan (designated driver) had some fizzy pop.
The bar area was a relaxed affair with a piano (no one was playing today) bar stools, and people enjoying fish and chips in a more casual setting. The restaurant is on the other side facing the beach. The girls decided to have a potter outside to do some cartwheels on the grass in the sunshine while we waited. It was a perfect night for it.
Soon we were seated in a spot in the middle of the restaurant. It was a little bit of a shame we weren’t by the windows but we were quite a big party so could understand the location. We loved the little touches like the bespoke lighting of a ceramic shoal of mackerel. Alan noticed that the odd one was gold which was really cute.
Colmans Seafood Temple Menu
My mam and I shared some garlic prawns (£8.50) which were amazing. Plump, juicy and very garlicky.
Alan and my Dad went for the Colmans Crabcakes with curry mayo (£7.95) which they really enjoyed.
The girls chose Mini fish and chips from the kid’s menu and were still playing out at this point.
Main Courses at Colmans
My Mam and Nana both ordered the Cod & Chips (£9.95) which they loved.
The girls’ portion was pretty big too and they polished it off.
Myself and my Dad had the Mixed seafood grill (£28) which was perfect when you fancied a bit of everything! On our massive plate, we had lobster, prawns, salmon, scallops and sea bream all in a lush garlic butter. The fish was all perfectly cooked. And the portion of chips to accompany the dish went down well too.
Alan went for the Salmon Teriyaki and rice (£15.50) which he enjoyed with some of my chips (my mixed platter was huge!).
We all loved our meals and were too full for any deserts.
If I was to make any criticism of our experience it would be the service let Colmans Temple down a little. We were offered tap water which only materialised after a prompt and later on we had to grab a passing waitresses attention to order a second bottle of wine. The staff seemed more concerned with cleaning up surrounding tables and there was little small talk or chat to build up a rapport with the customers. I appreciate that this was probably one of the busiest weekends of the year though.
End of the Bank Holiday
Despite the slight service issues, Colmans was a perfect venue to catch up with our family after we had been away in Manchester for the weekend. The restaurant was relaxed with great views and everyone loved their food.
Funnily enough, we started to make our plans for the South Tyneside Summer Concerts in Bent’s Park which Colmans sponsor. The girls voted for tween favourite ‘The Vamps’ and I still have a soft spot for 80’s legend Jason Donovan! Roll on to lots more sunny weekend fun in South Shields.
Monday to Saturday 11:30-8:30
For full menu check out their menus on www.colmansseafoodtemple.co.uk