Area focus South Tyneside: Go south, young man…

Exploring the seaside is one of the big pleasures of summer, and the strip between the Tyne and the Wear is full of lovely beaches, pretty picnic spots and great little eateries. Home to national award-winning fish and chips and ice cream outlets, plus some fantastic delis, cafes and Mediterranean restaurants, here’s where to find them …

Happy Organic

Happy Organic is a family-run shop and café that very proudly delivers on its name, serving delicious, healthy food throughout the day in a jolly, busy, bunting-bedecked atmosphere that welcomes you with a big smile. There’s a delicious range of coffees and organic wines and a fresh daily menu featuring homemade pizza, salads, quiche, soup and specials, along with BLT sandwiches on the best bread with organic bacon and salad. The cakes are gorgeous too and you can pick up an organic vegetable or fruit box to take home.
Front Street, Cleadon, SR6 7PG tel 0191 536 3623,

With its delicious range of pasta and pizza, Bravi is a well-established, quality Italian and continental restaurant. Bravi’s a la carte menu offers a fine range of dishes from matured steaks to fish such as sea bass and succulent slow-cooked lamb. For lunchtimes and early evenings Bravi offers a great value two or three-course menu Monday-Saturday, while on Sundays there is traditional Sunday roast. There is also a private dining room for 20 guests.
North Street, South Shields NE33 1HD, tel 0191 427 5400,

There aren’t many chippies that get the Greenpeace seal of approval, but then there’s not much Colman’s can’t do. Serving sustainable line-caught haddock and cod along with a range of not-so-well known fish in the crispiest batter accompanied by legendary chips, it’s no wonder Colman’s routinely finds itself in national league tables. There’s even crab, lobster and mussels on the menu and it’s open daily for takeaway or eat in.
Ocean Road, South Shields, tel 0191 456 1202,

Bon Appetit Deli & Gifts
A café, deli and a gift shop under one roof, this is one serious comfort zone. Salads, jacket potatoes, and quiche are freshly prepared each day, or for something more substantial, choose one of the delicious meat or cheese platters. There’s also a range of wines, ciders and beers and gifts include candles, and cards and calendars by local artists.
Front Street, Cleadon, SR6 7PG, tel 0191 537 4333,

Bistro Romano
Established for more than 30 years, Bistro Romano serves robust pasta and risotto dishes and fine meat and fish specialities to a loyal clientele which appreciates its great ingredients, including local and organic. There’s a bustling, cheerful atmosphere and it is beautifully done out with crisp linen tablecloths.
Front Street, Cleadon, tel 0191 519 1747,


Toney Minchella
You don’t go to South Shields without treating yourself to a Toney Minchella ice cream, made here since 1935. There are four outlets in prime positions with spectacular views over beaches, parks and harbours, while the flagship South Marine Park venue is a spacious cafe where you can sit down and enjoy speciality tea, coffee, and snacks.
Visit the website for more details.

The Pantry Bakery & Coffee Shop
Offering up to 20 fresh homemade treats from lemon drizzle cake to cream-filled strawberry tart, The Pantry is booming. It’s everything a coffee shop should be – delicious, great value, with eye-popping portions and friendly staff. Also serving English breakfast and platter lunches, this cosy coffee shop is catered for by its sister bakery in South Shields, which is open to the public also. Coming soon to Whitburn meanwhile, a glass of wine with your lunch.
Coffee Shop: East Street, Whitburn, Sunderland, SR6 7BY, tel 0191 529 2798,

No.4 Boldon
With its quirky wallpaper, antiques and custom-made tables and chairs, No.4 is a little bistro full of charm. The loyal clientele has voted the warm Asian beef salad the ultimate lunch, closely followed by the homemade burger and hand-cut chips. A glass of wine goes down well, too. Breakfast of eggs Benedict, omelette, or traditional English is served until noon, while the bistro is also popular for coffee, luxury hot chocolate and cake.
St Bede’s, Station Road, East Boldon, NE36 OLE, tel 0191 447 9797,

Mac ‘n’ Alli
Not your usual tearoom, Mac ‘n’ Alli is full of retro and vintage gifts and collectables. Cakes, savouries and bakes are all made fresh and you can sample traditional fayre such as carrot cake, lemon drizzle and delicious cream scones and some surprises such as key lime pie and American pancakes with maple syrup. The menu changes regularly in a comfortable, inspiring atmosphere.
Mac ‘n’ Alli, Retail 6 Village Centre, Sea Winnings Way, Westoe Crown Village, South Shields, NE33 3NE

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