By the seaside


Dean Bailey takes an amble around Amble and samples the best of the Northumberland coast

The Old Storehouse
Arriving on a damp and windy Saturday afternoon in the middle of summer, we were in urgent need of refuge, and the Old Storehouse turned out to be the perfect spot. This lovely pub and restaurant, which incorporates elements of an 18th Century storehouse, prides itself on sourcing its produce locally, with salmon smoked in Seahouses on the menu alongside Northumberland cheese and the best of the North Sea’s daily catch featuring on our visit. The highlight for us was undoubtedly the Artfully Crafted Homemade Cheescake with liquer-marinated berries – just what we needed before braving the bracing British summer again.
The Old Storehouse, Links Road, Amble, NE65 0SD tel 01665 710 500,

The Amble Butcher
If you’re dining in and looking for the best of Northumberland, head to The Amble Butcher on Queen Street. Peter Forsyth set up shop here in 2010 and has a fantastic reputation with the locals. If you’re popping in at the right time of year, get your hands on some of the free-range pork – outside-reared Welsh White from Mark Bradley at Hamsterley Forest. The beef and lamb are Northumbrian too, while the bacon is dry cured in-house and the pies are all homemade and attract customers from across the North East, including the kitchen at the Redhouse on Newcastle’s Quayside. Peter, master butcher Rob Edmindson and the team are more than happy to prepare meat for your recipe, or suggest one of their favourites. We left with a plan for a whole week and a stock of pies for the office!
The Amble Butcher, Queen Street, Amble, NE65 0BX tel 01665 712 700,

Despite the weather, which had brightened up a tiny bit in the afternoon, a walk on the beach is an absolute must for those of us who only travel to the seaside on rare occasions. And no trip to the seaside is complete without ice cream. The multi-award-winning Spurelli on Coquet Street has long been a favourite of team appetite and we weren’t going to miss an opportunity to get our hands on more of their fab frozen treats – the Sicilian Pistachio has won awards for years and is a must, while an Alnwick Rum gelato came highly recommended – and was delicious!
The Old Chandlery, Coquet Street, Amble, NE65 0DJ tel 01665 710 890,

The Farm Bakery Shop
With a lot of walking now under our belts, we needed something sugary to keep us going, so we headed for the Farm Bakery Shop on Queen Street. We ended up with another bag of goodies (and a very pink cake), plus a business card for master baker Colyn, who makes the most amazing celebration cakes – some of which have appeared in Vogue! Colyn and his wife Christine have gained a reputation for quality locally and we loved every bit of our bag of goodies. If you’re in Amble on Sundays, head to the market and say hello.
The Farm Bakery Shop, Queen Street, Amble, NE65 0BX tel 01665 714 444,

If you’re looking for a cuppa and breakfast or light lunch, Jaspers on Bridge Street should be your go-to. Home to the best local produce, this cosy corner in the heart of the town hits the spot when it comes to a proper Northumberland brekkie with local produce served in proper portions. Lunch is light with sandwiches and salads, plus a specials board which featured jacket potato with barbecue chicken, mozzarella and roast pepper, and bacon, brie and cranberry toasted ciabatta on our visit. The friendly staff make it a pleasure to visit, and if you’re just passing, there’s a takeaway option too.
Jaspers, Bridge Street, Amble, NE65 0DR, tel 01665 714 724

Amble Harbour Village
The regeneration project is has brought 15 ‘pods’ to the harbour, plus a seafood centre, and events throughout the year. The pods, which are open 10am-4pm every day*, are home to local businesses selling everything from arts and crafts to jewellery and accessories. There are also foodie businesses including The Farm Bakery, Mocha Mondo and Flynn Fargo (charcuterie & cheese). If you want to get your hands on fresh seafood from the North Sea as soon as it lands, head to the Seafood Centre, which aims to supply restaurants and retailers, as well as sell to the public, and is open Thursday (1-4pm), Friday (noon-4pm) and Saturday (10am-noon). See the website for the latest events.
*Individual businesses may have varying opening days and times – check website for details.
Amble Harbour Village, Leazes Street, Amble, NE65 0FD tel 01665 713 580,

The Old Boat House
On a special return visit the following weekend at the insistence of our lady editor, who visited sister restaurant Blyth Boathouse recently we popped into the Old Boathouse for lunch. Produce doesn’t get much fresher, with boats landing catches yards from the kitchen door in the harbour, with the added benefit of a stunning view out across the North Sea. Our lunch of North Sea codling fish fingers with homemade tartare sauce (the best we have found, anywhere) and Amble harbour lobster with chips and garlic mayo showcased what the Old Boathouse is all about – simple food showing off the freshest seafood you’ll find anywhere.
The Old Boat House, Leazes Street, Amble, NE65 0AA tel 01665 711 232,

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