Review: Barluga, Grey Street
- Evening Chronicle
- Jun 1 2012
FOR many years now Barluga has been one of my favourite venues in Newcastle city centre.
There is always a good ambience and even during its busiest periods it retains a relaxed feel.
Of course, Barluga is not just a bar, it’s also a popular dining spot, but it had been far too long since I had last eaten there.
So when a very dear friend of mine invited me along for a business lunch, who was I to say no?
I’m glad I went. As well as talking business, we had a great catch-up and enjoyed some excellent food.
Soup of the day was vegetable while fish of the day was haddock, the lovely Masi told us as we sat down in the dining area to the back of the bar.
Masi was a terrific hostess. She made sure we were comfortable and paid attention to us, while at the same time not being overpowering.
There’s a cracking starters selection to choose from and my friend decided the vegetable soup (£4.45) would be a light way to begin.
It was indeed tasty and had a creamy consistency. It arrived piping hot.
It took me a while to decide whether to have the chef’s handmade scotch egg with brown sauce and watercress (£4.45) or pan-seared scallops on black pudding with apple puree, balsamic dressing and micro herbs (£7.95).
I eventually opted for the latter and it proved the perfect starter.
The scallops were delicious while the bite-size portions of black pudding were just right for the start of the meal.
The apple puree, dressing and herbs were a wonderful complement.
It was a good start and the mains that followed continued the pattern.
Barluga presently has a summer time selection on the menu and it was from this that I chose the marinated chicken with asparagus with minted broad beans, peas, lambs leaf and a herb butter (£10.95).
Again, a perfect choice. The chicken (on the bone) had just the correct moistness to it but it had been cooked long enough to have a crispness around the edges.
The vegetables with it were extremely tasty and, again, the portions of everything were spot-on.
I did also have some thick home-cut chips (£2.95) as an extra treat and they went down very well.
Seared tuna nicoise with cherry tomatoes, red onions, capers, French beans and heritage potatoes topped with a soft boiled egg (£10.95) was our other choice, also from the summer time selection.
There was a huge piece of fresh tuna which at first she thought wasn’t quite rare enough but was actually perfect.
The runny egg yolk in the soft boiled egg was a great substitute for a dressing for the lunch guest watching her weight! That didn’t stop her from losing her willpower and devouring all the heritage potatoes.
Other dishes on the summer time selection are avocado and artichoke salad and chargrilled basil chicken, feta and beetroot salad with spinach, rocket, spring onion and broad beans.
Also, you have the menu proper with comfort food, sea dishes, sandwiches, grills and even oysters if you so desire.
Barluga has a lot of competition now on Grey Street, but on the evidence of our visit there it is still holding its own in Newcastle’s most wonderful location.
Tue, 12 Jun 2012 09:59:40 GMT (updated: Tue, 12 Jun 2012 10:10:23 GMT)