When I read that the people behind Blackfriars, were opening a restaurant serving Geordie comfort food in Whitley Bay, I was interested. I mean, the name is propa cushty/lush/mint hinny! (Sorry) Hinnies is located on East Parade, looking out onto the sea front (where How Do You Do used to be) and even on a cold, blustery Saturday morning, it looked really inviting from the outside. The interior is beautiful – lots of natural wood tones, mirrors, vintage memorabilia and coastal inspired colours. I love the bluey colour used throughout the restaurant.
There was a group of us (including two kids) booked in early for brunch and I’m not kidding, I’ve been sporadically looking at the weekend brunch menu online ever since I booked our table (which was WEEKS ago). Produce is sourced as locally as possible and dishes are locally inspired. The lunch and dinner menu also looks great, will be popping back to check it out, I’ve got my eye on the Sunday roast!
I won’t go into a huge story about what we each ordered, instead I’ll share the photos and descriptions!
The dishes were presented beautifully, the plates were warm and most importantly, the food was delicious! I wasn’t sure I would enjoy a foraged mushroom, turns out I did. I just can’t resist poached eggs, throw in some crispy bacon and I’m sold. Two of my friends had the black pudding and said it was very tasty. Another friend, who had the corned beef hash said it was lovely but didn’t taste like she expected it to. The eggy bread was a hit too. We polished it all off which is most definitely a good sign. I really liked that there weren’t exhaustive brunch items to pick from, it made my life easier (well, I still couldn’t pick between two options and made a last minute decision when my order was being taken).
The staff were all very friendly and helpful although they did seem a bit rushed off their feet. There were just two small hiccups with our orders, nothing major – some of our drinks arrived but a few didn’t, my friend who ordered the corned beef hash noticed it had come without the potatoes it mentioned on the menu. Everything was fixed quickly, with a sincere apology from the staff. It was very child-friendly, the high-chair was ready and waiting, kids menu brought over and the kids were given colouring in sheets to keep them entertained.
Drinks wise, we’d all had a round of drinks before the food arrived. Cappuccino, teas, hot chocolate… I liked that the children’s hot chocolate came in a more child-friendly cup than the long glass our other hot chocolate was served in.
The atmosphere was relaxed and I loved that we weren’t rushed at all. I enjoyed looking around and seeing all the little details, lots of things to photograph!
We’ve driven past a few times since Hinnies opened its doors and now I’ve been, it’s no wonder it’s always busy! We parked in the nearby Spanish City car park, near the white dome (£1.20 per hour), it’s just a few minutes walk away. If the weather had been better it would’ve been lovely to go for a walk down the sea front afterwards – it’s a great spot – but it was windy, drizzly and cold, no thanks.
We ended up staying for around 2 hours and fancied something sweet to finish off. As desserts aren’t served until after 12 (once brunch service is over and lunch begins), we walked down to Di Meo’s for a scoop of ice-cream instead.
Hinnies was definitely a hit with me and the friends I brunched with. I’m looking forward to heading back with Ankush for lunch or dinner. Have you visited yet? Let me know if you’ve been or are planning to pop in!