Thursday, 9 April 2015

Andrew's Birthday at the Herb Garden & Super Natural Preview Event

Super Natural Newcastle

March and April is the time to have a birthday in my family. My mum's birthday (which we spent in York this year - post all about that here) is March 6th, mine follows on March 26th, and just eight days later is Andrew's on April 3rd, with my sister's last but not least on April 4th. As is customary on your big day, we spent Andrew's birthday eating and drinking at various establishments across Newcastle.



The Herb Garden Newcastle UK

For lunch, Andrew had requested one thing: pizza. Usually we head to Pizza Express for our vegan pizza fix, but I'd heard on the grapevine that the Herb Garden had added a number of vegan options to its menu, so we headed there with my sister and her boyfriend.

The Herb Garden Newcastle UK

The Herb Garden is a pizza kitchen set into a railway arch just near the train station in Newcastle.

The cylinders above line one wall of the restaurant and run from floor to ceiling. Inside are all manner of herbs just waiting to be harvested, shredded and added to your lunch.

The Herb Garden Newcastle UK

The kitchen is open, just next to the front door, and you can watch the chefs hand toss your dough before loading it with toppings and chucking it in the stone pizza oven. The ceiling is also a pretty grand affair, strung with what must be hundreds of paper lanterns of varying sizes.

Pulled Pork Calzone at The Herb Garden Newcastle UK

My sister and her boyfriend, Nick, went for the pulled pork calzone. They are obviously not vegan. The calzone was intimidatingly huge, and the accompanying salad looked delectable.

Pulled Pork Calzone intimidation! The Herb Garden Newcastle

She said it was nice, if you like that sorta thing.

Vegan option - Lean Mean Aubergine at The Herb Garden Newcastle

I went for the vegan special of the day, Lean Mean Aubergine; a Mediterranean style stuffed aubergine, packed with tomatoes, capers, onions, olives, thyme and pistachios, and served with a fennel salad and spicy potatoes.

This was mouthwateringly good. The aubergine was baked to perfection without any wateriness or stringiness. The stuffing complemented the aubergine perfectly, with the pistachios adding just the right amount of crunch amongst the veggies. The fennel salad wasn't too strongly flavoured, but for me, the spicy, blackened potatoes stole the show. Divine.

The Herb Garden Newcastle Vegan Pizza

To our delight there were two vegan pizza options on the menu. Andrew opted for the 'number 13' which had tomato, broccoli, mushroom, thyme, walnut and beetroot - but he nixed the beetroot.

The Herb Garden Newcastle Vegan Pizza

The base was good; light and crunchy, and the veggies were perfectly tender. The walnuts added a little something extra, and were a welcome addition to an all-round good pizza. Highly recommended.

Super Natural Newcastle

After several hours of walking around Newcastle's shops, we were ready for more food. Luckily, we'd been invited to a pre-launch event for Newcastle's newest vegetarian and vegan eatery: Super Natural, through our friends in NE Veggie Socials.

Super Natural used to be a staple on the Newcastle veggie scene back in the 1970s and 80s, but it closed down a few years ago. Now it's back in Upper Princess Square, once again feeding the veg*ns of the North East.

Super Natural Newcastle Menu

The menus offer up some old favourites as well as some exciting options such as vegan cheese savoury (which I am dying to try!)

Salad Bar at Super Natural Newcastle

There is a distinct lean towards fresh and raw foods, with an incredible variety of salads on offer alongside sandwiches, freshly baked breads, paninis and jacket potatoes, all at very competitive prices.

Salad Bar at Super Natural Newcastle

Super Natural Newcastle Bread Selection

Super Natural Newcastle Bread Selection

Super Natural Newcastle Menu

Sweet potato jackets are on offer for those looking for something a little different, as well as a vegan burger for a mere £3.

Vegan Open Sandwiches at Super Natural Newcastle

Vegan Burgers at Super Natural Newcastle

Super Natural is now open to the public between 11.00am - 6.00pm Monday - Saturday and I think it's going to offer something great for veggies and vegans looking for a tasty, quick bite to eat.

It's really exciting to see so many options for those looking for a plant-based meal in the North East, and Super Natural is proof that a vegan diet is neither difficult nor expensive!

Emily x
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3 comments

  1. The Herb Garden sounds has though the food is delicious, will have to try it some time!! It's so good to find some other Newcastle vegan eaters, I never knew there was so much choice! :) xx

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