I wrote this post a month or so ago and it was featured in NARC. Magazine‘s first ever food section, but I thought I’d share it here for anyone who missed it.
You’ll have no doubt noticed it – stylish eateries popping up everywhere in the region, a swarm of fantastic local suppliers and the influx of huge food events – it seems the North East has undergone something of a food revolution lately.
People are more passionate and educated about what they’re putting in their mouths than they’ve ever been before and we are fortunate enough to have both coast and countryside on our doorstep, giving us the pick of the bunch when it comes to fresh produce.
There are a number of great food writers who share their food discoveries online via blogs and websites. And, while they might not be experts in the traditional sense, they’re avid food fans who have a genuine interest in the region’s culinary circuit and are doing wonders for promoting our local eateries.
I started Scran On The Tyne (www.scranonthetyne.com) initially as a blog and posted a few tweets asking if anyone would like to contribute, and I was flabbergasted by the response. People love food, it seems! A couple of months later and it’s gone from a labour of love written only by me, to a community of food fans – 14 to be exact – who want to share their experiences of all things food in the region. With a good dollop of variety and a side helping of canny craic and special offers, it will hopefully become a regular reference point for both hardened foodies and those just starting their love affair with it.
Of course, every new venture is inspired by something or someone, and I took my inspiration from the North East based food blogs already on the block. So without further ado, here’s my top picks of food blogs every ardent foodie should have bookmarked…
The Grazer: Anna Hedworth, aka The Grazer, is a girl after my own heart. Except she’s a much, much better cook and runs wonderful Supperclub events at the Ouse St. Arts Club every couple of months, as well as pop-up kitchens and markets at events such as the Ouseburn Festival.
On her blog you can follow her ‘food-life journal’ and pick up some fantastic tips and recipes along the way. She’s a keen forager, has her own allotment and her recipes are seriously inspiring. I can’t read her blog without getting food envy and have planted many a hint that I should probably just move in and let her feed me, to no avail.
The Grazer Supperclub events are not to be missed, but places go extremely quickly and her July event is already sold out. You can however, indulge in a totally unique dining experience and attend one of Anna’s events held in partnership with The National Trust in July and August this year on the Farne Islands. You can also follow Anna on Twitter for regular recipe updates and be first in the know when she announces Supperclub dates!
Newcastle Eats: Canny couple Jeff and Kate are self-confessed “foodies with big appetites”, giving locals and visitors the insider’s guide to the best of all things food in the North East. They’re always eating out, plus they manage to bag invites to every hot new opening in the City, so you can be sure they’ll keep you fully informed.
Their reviews are unbiased and down-to-earth, and their main aim is to get people out of the big chains and into local independent eateries. The site has been going since 2011, so these two have been on the food scene longer than most and their archive is something to behold. From fish and chip shops to delis and fine dining restaurants, Newcastle Eats has got it covered. Head over to Twitter to follow their food musings in 140 characters.
Milked Teeth: Reading Polly Randall’s blog makes me hungry. No scratch that, it makes me STARVING. I’m an admirer of her distinctive and sometimes sarcastic writing style, and she’s the only person (to my knowledge!) who has written about the ridiculous placement of a bicycle in the ladies loos of Pleased To Meet You. Oh, and she hates laminated menus, which I also agree with.
Milked Teeth is packed full of reviews and recipes, with posts dating all the way back to October 2011. It follows Polly around the region as she eats a load of lovely meat dishes and occasionally eats too much. When you pay her blog a visit, make sure you check out the recipe for Cheat’s Peking Duck, Prawn Wantons and Sticky & Spicy Chicken Wings. My word!
You can also follow Polly on Twitter.
Eating Up North: Ruth Hinds started Eating Up North back in 2010, which follows her (and occasionally her fella’s) journey of food through the North East and sometimes a bit further afield. Her style of writing is informative, honest and quick-witted, with plenty of pictures to illustrate what she’s talking about.
I’m a big fan of her ‘What’s On’ and ‘Best Of’ posts, giving readers plenty of insight into what’s happening in the region food and drink wise. She also posts some fantastic recipes with easy to follow instructions. The posh parmo is a personal favourite. Oh, and she’s also part of Foodies 100, the largest network of food and drink bloggers in the UK.
Scobberlotch: Another food blogging couple, Rosie and John have been musing about their food discoveries since summer 2012. The Scobberlotch pair indulge in everything from fine dining at Lumley Castle to a spot of lunch at the Greggs Moment café, and write succinct and friendly reviews. No recipes here I’m afraid, however they do have a brilliant ‘Offers and Deals’ section where you can find exclusive discounts for venues around the region.
You can also easily navigate their reviews in the ‘Where We’ve Been’ section, which also features some one-offs from their travels. The couple are often invited to places to write reviews, but always state this in the first line and provide honest reviews regardless.
So there you have it, my personal pick of my favourite foodie blogs in the region. Check them out for yourself!