What We Ate: Natural Smoked Haddock & Poached Eggs | Chorizo & Halloumi Hash Bowl | Eggs Ernesto | Ernest Large (i.e. EVERYTHING)
Discreetly tucked away between upmarket Jesmond and the bohemian Ouseburn Valley, Ernest is a little out of the way of the action, but herein lies its charm - a hidden gem against an up and coming industrial backdrop; Ernest is only the start of this area’s trendy renovation. Ernest is pure unadulterated hipster cool, but manages to do so effortlessly and it's seriously laid back. The atmosphere is bright, lively and energetic and will feed your soul as well as your hangover. However, the important bit: The Food is Amazing. You could strip Ernest of all its quirky style and it would still come out on top. You can of course get your fix of carbs and stodge to soak up last night’s alcohol excess, but you’d be missing out on Ernest’s creative, thoughtful, flavoursome and altogether superior creations, and there’s an abundance to choose from on the extensive menu.
This place channels a strong ‘good food = a good life’ vibe. Their breakfasts are sunshine on a plate and, as it happens, the sun was shining on our visit too, meaning we could make the most of their outdoor seating, which includes actual sofas – much appreciated for a post-breakfast doze. If you find breakfast turning into afternoon, Ernest becomes a funky little bar, before being reinvented once again at night, its live music and DJs earning itself a cult following in Newcastle. Join the cool kids and head to Ernest for your hangover breakfast. They also serve, quite frankly, the best Bloody Mary we’ve ever tasted - if breakfast doesn’t cure you, hair of the dog surely will.
What We Ate: Eggs el Mexicano with Chorizo Salsa | The BigAss Breakfast Sarnie | The 'All In' | Black Pudding Benedict | Pancakes, Bacon & Maple Syrup
This is one for the carnivores. When I met Longhorn’s brand director prior to LNOF’s breakfast dalliance, he looked at me with a sense of pity when I sheepishly confessed to dabbling with vegetarianism a few months ago - “No, no, I'm sorry, but we definitely don't cater for vegetarians”. If you’re not familiar with Longhorns yet, you soon will be. They’ve confidently and quickly expanded throughout Newcastle with a city centre restaurant, another in Jesmond and cater for all sorts of foodie events (including the legendary Boiler Shop), as well as rearing their livestock from their own farm. Longhorns emanates pride. It’s not just jumping on the rustic foodie bandwagon and going to happily churn out pulled pork from behind plaid shirts and hipster beards (though as it happens, I’ve eaten lunch there as well and their pulled pork is excellent).
The bacon was so rich and flavoursome, crispy but still succulent, that we brought some back to the office for our web developer – a South African meat obsessive who cures his own meat. He claimed it to be "the best bacon I’ve ever eaten". I can’t emphasise enough what a statement this is. Expect your brekkie served on a wooden board and where it’s possible – in a pile. The breakfast burger is a force to be reckoned with – we always thought eating a burger with your knife and fork was a prissy thing to do, but there’s literally no other way you’d get this beast in your mouth. Longhorns has put soul into every detail; their baked beans have been BBQ-ed up, their hollandaise has been given a bit of a kick, their chorizo salsa has a sharp twist of lemon. Join the Longhorns movement, and good luck – you’re going to need it if you order the breakfast burger.
What We Ate: Cumberland Sausage & Portobello Mushroom Roll | Granola with Blueberries & Greek Yogurt | Avocado & Smoked Salmon on Toast | French Pastries
Garden Kitchen is an unassuming venue hidden in Eldon Garden, but don’t be under the illusion that because it’s set within a shopping centre that this is just another slap-up breakfast café. On the contrary, if you’re after a Full English to soak up last night’s liquor, then this isn’t your place, but it will lull your hangover with its wholesome healthiness and rich coffee. Garden Kitchen is slick and sophisticated but relaxed and down to earth, and it’s lower-level setting and surrounding trees gives it the vibe of a secluded little Parisian café.
The menu is petit but perfectly formed, including bacon, sausage and Portobello mushroom sandwiches served in ciabatta, a variety of sugary French pastries, scones and fruit, and the hearty sautéd rump steak with scrambled eggs and homemade ketchup. This is a place worthy of glamorous Sunday mornings, glossy brunches and jazz music – and the ego boost alone could rid you of your hangover. Prepare to feel like your delicate selves are being soothed in a rom-com blockbuster movie and the starring characters are always hungover on Sundays because their Saturday nights are so awesome.
What We Ate: Bacon Rolls | Beans on Sourdough Toast | Toasted Northumbrian Teacakes | Homemade Cheese Scones
If you’re a Newcastle tourist on your breakfast vacation and want to soak up some of the city’s fine culture, then you won’t find anywhere better located than The Baltic. The media loves to portray this fine city as a working class northern town where we’re all eating Gregg’s sarnies for breakfast, but they quietly ignore the Georgian and Victorian splendour that decorates the city centre and runs down to the riverside, contrasted with the modern architecture surrounding the Tyne.
The Baltic may be a contemporary art gallery, but it is also highly regarded for its foodie credentials. The glass rooftop restaurant, SIX, is fine dining with stunning views and the Baltic Kitchen is urban industrial-chic, housed on the ground floor, just next to the Millennium Bridge. The menu is simple and stylish; big breakfast sandwiches, baked beans on toasted sourdough and toasted Northumbrian teacakes with jam and butter. If you’re staying in one of the many nearby hotels on your stag or hen weekend, a wholesome breakfast and a walk along the river in the morning sunshine will work wonders for your hangover.
Words: Louise Henderson. Photographs: Laura Young