As the lockdown continues, just like everyone, I’m missing lots of things I previously took for granted.
The benefit though, is that all of those little things will be all the more lovely once we’re able to do them again. Plus, making plans and looking forward to such events is helping to pass the time.
So I’ve refined my list of the ten small but wonderful plans I can’t wait for once restrictions begin to be relaxed in the North East:
1. An after-work tea at the Dim Sum Parlour in Durham
Not only can I not wait to return to the office (working from home novelty has well and truly worn off), but I can’t wait to pay this little gem a visit.
I’m getting adventurous with Asian cooking in the kitchen, but nothing beats your favourite restaurants. The Dim Sum Parlour in Durham is definitely one of mine. It’s my go-to for after work catch-ups with its casual atmosphere and insanely good food.
2. A Saturday afternoon at the flicks, followed by pizza at Stable Hearth, Darlington
I love going to the pictures, a leisurely Saturday for us tends to be a pint in the pub, catching a film and going for food before heading back home to fall asleep on the couch before 8pm. Wild, I know.
We always head to the Vue at Darlington for a cinema date and have been having lots of fun making our way around the town’s food scene. Our favourite so far is the traditional Neapolitan-style pizza from Stable Hearth. A seriously unbelievable menu, it’s the perfect pit-stop for post-cinema grub.
3. Day drinking at By the River Brew Co.
Day drinking is my favourite kind of drinking. And the lovely weather we’ve been having lately has been perfect for an afternoon on the beers. Drinking in my own garden just isn’t the same as the one at the pub… And one of the best spots for enjoying good weather, good beer and a good view is, of course, By the River Brew Co.
Gorgeous views of the Tyne bridge, an awesome craft beer selection and street food on-site, you can be clocked there all day without any reason to move.
4. Date night at The Impeccable Pig, Sedgefield
We’re so lucky to have this place pretty much on our doorstep. It’s our go-to for date nights without going into Durham city. Sometimes, we’ll even pop in on a Sunday afternoon for a couple of drinks to round off the weekend.
I love their main menu and could spend hours making my way through their wine list. Plus, the service, atmosphere and that incredible decor makes it feel all the more special.
5. A weekend brunch at Flat White
God, do I miss brunching. Don’t get me wrong, we’ve had our fair share of quarantine brunches but I want to wake up early, walk along the river and join the famous Flat White queue to enjoy brunch and brew from the folk who do it best.
6. Discover new favourite producers at a local food market
Quayside, Tynemouth, Full Moon – I’m making my way through the lot as soon as I can. I’m trying to support local businesses who are still operating as much as I can during this time, but I really love to spend a morning wandering around stalls, spending loads of money and stuffing my face with street food. I love discovering new foodie vendors, ingredients and other delights and I’ve got a lot of making up to do…
7. A wander (pub crawl) around Durham city
Ah the cobbles, the cathedral, the castle… I can’t wait to appreciate it all that little bit more when lockdown is over.
Teamed with a visit to Old Tom’s Gin Bar, a cheeky one in The Shakespeare, perhaps even nip in Market Vault? And you can’t miss the John Duck out…
8. A dog-friendly staycation at the Rose and Crown, Romaldkirk
This might be my new favourite pub. It’s a gorgeous, cosy, traditional venue with incredible food and service. What’s even better is, it’s dog friendly and has gorgeous court rooms that cater for your furry friends.
It’s far enough away to definitely warrant a sleepover and it’s the perfect base for exploring the Teesdale hills.
9. Spend a Sunday hiking
Speaking of hills, I cannot wait to get back to exploring this beautiful region during my Sunday hikes. The coastlines and the countryside, we’re so spoilt here in the North East! Have you read my top 5 walks (with pubs) yet?
10. Sunday lunch at the Travellers Rest in Witton Gilbert
Most of all, I’m missing a Sunday roast that I haven’t had to make myself. My love for a Sunday lunch is no secret, it’s my favourite meal of the week. And neither is my love for the Travellers Rest in Witton Gilbert. They do THE best Sunday dinner, without question. In fact, they pretty much do the best pub food full stop. It was our last meal before lockdown and I can guarantee it will be our first after it too.
What are you most looking forward to after lockdown?
Lots of love, LB x