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Food & Drink Reviews

chillihotdog.jpg Pub review> The Chillingham

The Chillingham in Heaton has just had an extensive make-over and they’ve really hit the ground running with a brand new food menu full of “proper” this and “gourmet” that.

Hang on? Is it called The Chillingham or The Chillingham Arms? Their website calls it The Chillingham, while their Facebook page calls it The Chillingham Arms. The sign outside states Chillingham while their menus have it The Chillingham Arms? It’s confusing so I’m just sticking with “the Chilli”. What’s not up for debate is the fact that the pub has now went the full brioche. Yep, that rich but light pastry of French origin is now being used for the buns on their gourmet beef burgers and gourmet sausage dogs.

I visited with a friend one dinnertime and she tried said burger (£8.50) which was a towering creation that included red onion, relish, cheddar, tomato, lettuce, house ‘slaw and those delectable buns – toasted. French fries were a natural side and she wolfed the lot down while making appreciative “Mmm” noises as she applied herself. I tried the Cumberland sausage (£6.95) that came with a creamy mash and tempura onion rings. It punched well above its weight for pub food and was set off by a perfect ale gravy which I would have gladly drank a pint of. That wasn’t on the drinks menu but I was more than happy to avail myself of one of the many real ales that – thankfully – are still one of the pub’s biggest fortes.

The place itself is looking better than I have ever seen it. The seating (very comfortable) and tables (very brown) are all brand new and the bar and lounge areas are now connected via some glass doors. The watchword for the designers appears to have been traditional/modern with a colour scheme that runs from muted plums to putty and everything is very easy on the eye. What’s not changed is the bar is still home to a couple of pool tables, and they’ve still got their big screens if you want to watch your team fritter away a two-goal advantage.

Since completing my review meal, I’ve been back to try their roast stottie of the day (£6.25) which featured a delicious chunk of turkey, stuffing and chipolata sausages (with fat chips) and a sticky toffee pudding (£3.95) which came with the kind of butterscotch sauce that should be whispered about in hushed tones.

I don’t know if this place has “Arms” but it’s definitely got legs.

The Chillingham, Chillingham Road, Heaton, NE6 5XN. Food served from 12 noon-7pm daily (bar snacks, sharing boards and toasties available from 7-9pm). sjf.co.uk/our-pubs/the-chillingham