‘I cook a mean Sunday lunch. My idea of Heaven is a lunch outside on a beautifully sunny Sunday afternoon. It’s the time to gather everyone together’ – Cate Blanchett
*Our lunch was complimentary in return for an honest review*
The Union Rooms was always one of my favourite pubs in town when it was a Wetherspoons, Actually, scratch that, it was my favourite Wetherspoons when it was a Wetherspoons. It’s such a beautiful building that seemingly goes on for ever, the staircase is grand and looks like it should be in an early Spice Girls video and was always bright and lively.
Last year, Union Rooms was taken over by the San Lorenzo group and given a massive make over before relaunching. We were invited along to sample their Sunday lunch for inclusion in our new Sunday Lunch Club series and I was really excited to see how the place had evolved since the launch night in November.
They’ve kept a lot of the original charm from before, but they’ve really utilized all the little snug rooms that previously were only used as overspill areas form the main bars. We sat in the Restaurant end of the bar near the back which has been updated with some industrial style, pinterest worthy light fittings whilst remaining cosy and inviting.
We were pretty blown away by the quality of the food and the service. On first glance you might be forgiven for thinking it’s a little on the pricy side however you absolutely get what you pay for and more. We had 3 courses; scotch egg and prawn cocktail to start, roast pork and the trio of meats for main and chocolate brownie and cheesecake of the day (red velvet) for pudding.
The starters were incredible, in fact probably could have done with sharing one in hindsight, but the Mexican twist on the prawn cocktail was inspired and something I’ve never seen before. The curried scotch egg was also a nice change and would make a good bar snack if you weren’t there for a full meal.
The main meals were huge and included crispy roast potatoes. mash, thick slices of meat, seasonal veg and a large Yorkshire pudding. All cooked beautifully – special shout out to the seasoned turnip! For me I could have done without the mash potato. There was more than enough on the plate as it was and I ended up leaving it to save room for pudding. But mash is never my favourite anyway, so if it’s your thing – fill your boots!
Never to walk away from a challenge, after a 15 minute rest, we ventured into pudding territory. I’m glad we did because they were a real highlight. The dark chocolate brownie was soft and gooey without being sickly and worked well with the pistachio ice cream. I had real menu envy of Dave’s red velvet cheesecake though, which managed to taste exactly like cheesecake and red velvet sponge cake at the same time.
Special mention needs to go to Holly and Liam who looked after us really well, checking if there was anything we needed without being intrusive.
Its also worth mentioning they have other items like burgers and pizzas on their Sunday menu is a full roast isn’t your thing.
We’ll definitely be back to try more of their menu soon!
Address: 48 Westgate Rd, Newcastle upon Tyne NE1 1TT