The Cherry Tree in Jesmond is a restaurant I’ve dined at a few times over the years, most recently was last April for a friend’s hen-weekend meal. I was invited along to sample the menu and was informed that there had been a lot of changes, including a new chef, a new menu and a bit of a shake up of its look and feel.
I visited mid-week with a good friend of mine and was looking forward to a nice meal and a catch-up. I arrived a few minutes early and was greeted by a member of staff who took my coat and I waited in the bar area. Once my friend arrived we were shown to our table, I was on the lookout for the table with the best lighting. The kind waiter said he’d turn the lights up a little bit for me.
Although it was NE1 Restaurant Week, we decided to order from the Evening Menu which is served from Monday-Thursday, 5pm-10pm and very reasonably priced at £18.50 for two courses or £24 for three.
To start I chose the Soup of the Day which was Carrot and Butternut Squash Soup, Rachel went with the Beetroot, Goat’s Cheese and Walnut Salad. Ahead of our starters arriving we ordered Bread and Olives and a bottle of sparkling water to share.
We were both a tiny bit disappointed the bread wasn’t warm, but the olives were delicious. We started tucking in and asked for some side plates to be brought over so we could butter the bread. Our starters arrived very soon after the side plates, so we quickly ditched the bread and made a start on those! I loved the soup. It was delicious, thick and hearty and I really enjoyed the ribbons of roasted carrot and butternut squash that were placed on the top. Rachel said her salad was lovely, it certainly looked impressive with a good amount of goat’s cheese.
For our mains, I decided on the Confit Duck which came with fondant potato, caramelised red cabbage and blackberry jus. Rachel picked the Chicken Fricassee in a creamy champagne and mustard sauce, broad beans and tarragon.
I was delighted when I saw the duck as I could tell the skin was perfectly crispy. The meat was really tender and the caramelised red cabbage was a great accompaniment. The fondant potatoes were perfect too, crispy on the outside and fluffy in the middle. I definitely made the right choice. It was a lot of duck, and I knew I wanted dessert so I ended up leaving some meat. Rachel’s dish looked lovely, the perfect amount of sauce for me but a bit too much for her. She enjoyed it and said the chicken was perfectly seasoned and that it was nice to eat chicken that tasted of something. The vegetables that came alongside the chicken were a bit uninspired, just plain boiled vegetables.
When our waiter asked if we wanted to see the dessert menu, I think I said yes before he’d finished asking the question! I was torn between the Creme Brûlée and the Lemon Cheesecake. I picked the cheesecake and Rachel chose the Creme Brûlée.
My cheesecake looked incredible, topped with fresh berries. I kind of forgot it was a lemon cheesecake when I took my first bite so was surprised by the tangy taste, it was deliciously creamy and tasty, I usually prefer that it’s a bit sweeter but I can’t fault it. Rachel had a taste and absolutely loved it. I had a spoonful of her Creme Brûlée and it was quite something, I loved it and think I’ll be ordering that the next time I pop in.
I enjoyed the relaxed atmosphere at The Cherry Tree, and the food was delicious. The staff were friendly and helpful and I’d happily visit again, I’m interested in visiting for Sunday Lunch as I’ve heard lots of good reviews. It’s a great place to go for good quality food and reasonably priced to boot. Have you been? Would love to hear your thoughts!
*Our meal was complimentary for review purposes but my views are honest, as always!