Nestled in the heart of Newcastle, Blackfriars is a restaurant steeped in history, offering a dining experience like no other. As the oldest purpose-built dining room in the United Kingdom, dating back to 1239, this unique 80-seat restaurant is housed within a former Dominican friary, where the Black Friars of Newcastle once dined.
Today, the restaurant retains its historical charm and significance while offering a contemporary dining experience. The interior boasts comfortable booth seating, new tables and chairs, and stunning stained glass windows that add an extra touch of elegance. The venue’s location adds to its appeal, as it is situated in a 13th-century medieval friary, providing a serene and enchanting atmosphere for diners.
Established in 2001 by owners Andy and Sam Hook, Blackfriars has come a long way since its inception, expanding and growing to become one of Newcastle’s top dining destinations. The Hooked-on Group, which also operates Dobson & Parnell and Hinnies, has managed to turn the ancient friary into a bustling restaurant, earning numerous awards and accolades, such as being a two-time ‘Taste of the North East’ winner in the North East England Tourism Awards.
Blackfriars Restaurant prides itself on offering traditional British cuisine, crafted using seasonal and locally sourced produce from nearby farms and markets. Past popular favourites include delectable dishes that showcase the best of British gastronomy, with their award-winning set and à la carte menus changing regularly to capitalise on the availability of fresh, seasonal ingredients. This ensures that every visit promises a new and exciting culinary adventure.
Not only does Blackfriars offer an exquisite dining experience, but it also provides a variety of additional services and facilities for its patrons. In 2017, the restaurant expanded to include a Parlour Bar, Tasting Room, and Cookery School. The Parlour Bar serves an exciting range of pairings and flights, perfect for those looking to sample a variety of beverages. The Tasting Room and Cookery School, on the other hand, offer a range of courses, workshops, and private dining experiences for individuals and groups alike.
The Banquet Hall is a notable feature of the venue, capable of accommodating up to 50 guests for events and weddings. This ornate medieval hall, which once hosted King Edward III, has been meticulously restored and boasts authentic décor, including chandeliers, wall coverings, and stained-glass windows.
Situated in a historically significant and visually stunning location, Blackfriars Restaurant offers an unforgettable dining experience for both locals and visitors to the city. From its rich history and elegant interior to its exceptional menu of traditional British dishes crafted from locally sourced, seasonal ingredients – it’s easy to see why it’s such a popular destination.