Newcastle is not short of great places to eat but when choosing a restaurant to dine in, a casino might not be the first place that springs to mind! So I guess even though it’s located in one of the cities’ busiest entertainment venues, The Gate, you could say that Freya’s is a bit of a hidden gem!
As you enter Aspers it’s easy to be distracted by the bright lights of the slot machines and the buzz of the blackjack tables but after a hard day at work the other week I was much more interested in eating than gambling so my other half and I headed straight to the restaurant at the back of the casino to peruse the menu.
Freya’s has plenty of British classics to choose from like Fish and Chips and Braised Belly Pork plus locally sourced steaks and signature burgers, it was a dream menu for two famished food lovers! We spent ages choosing from the menu, enjoying the warm bread and refreshing Sauvignon Blanc and I couldn’t help but partake in a bit of people watching too… In the restaurant itself a group of about 18 women were kick starting a hen do by taking advantage of the great value Table D’Hote Menu which offers three courses from a set menu for just £12.95.
As the restaurant is only separated from the gaming tables by a low wall, I could also watch from afar at the people playing poker which I found really intriguing, or am I just a nosey parker?
After some encouragement from my impatient boyfriend I finally settled on a starter of rare beef salad (£6.50) and main of cumin spiced lamb rump (£14.50). He opted for smoked salmon and crab salad (£6.95) followed by a 10oz juicy rib eye steak (£17.95). One of my biggest bug bears in restaurants is overpriced sides and sauces but I certainly didn’t have this problem at Freyas, where you can pick any three for a fiver. We got a sauce for the steak, a rocket and parmesan salad and some of the biggest onion rings I’ve ever seen!
Due to the epic failure of forgetting to put a memory card in my camera (fellow bloggers will sympathise!) I had to use my boyfriend’s knackered old phone to capture a few pics, so massive apologises to you (and to the chef at Freya’s) because unfortunately these blurry images really don’t do the food justice. Every mouthful was delicious, the portions were hearty to say the least and we needed a bit of a rest before finally choosing to end our meals with a deliciously gooey chocolate orange brownie (£4.95) and a zesty lemon posset topped with meringue (£3.95). It was a really relaxing evening, although if we had have been in a bit more of a rush I definitely would have taken advantage of their ‘cakeaway’ menu!
Next time I’m looking for somewhere great to eat in Newcastle city centre, Freya’s at Aspers will certainly be a safe bet! (Sorry I couldn’t resist at least one gambling pun!)
My meal at Freya’s restaurant was complimentary but the blurry images and positive opinions are based on a very enjoyable evening that I would have happily paid for!
By Rachel Kershaw