Food: Four of the best brunch spots in Newcastle

Breakfast is my favourite meal of the day. You know how it's meant to be the most important meal of the day? I can totally get behind that. There's nothing I love more than an indulgent breakfast club, whether it's a midweek treat to set myself up for the day or catching up with friends at the weekend. I don't understand people who say they don't do breakfast. Eggs anyway (probably poached), freshly squeezed juice, hot foamy coffee, sticky pastries. You only have to look at my Instagram to see that breakfast is definitely my thing. Well, ok, more often than not it's brunch. Because mornings are certainly not my thing. There's nothing worse than finding a great breakfast spot, examining the menu, only to find they stopped serving breakfast at half 10. So in the interest of helping fellow breakfast aficionados out, I wanted to share some of my favourite brunch spots in Newcastle. And most of them are the kind of places that understand brunch can take place at any time of the day.

Harvest Canteen
91 St George's Terrace, Newcastle upon Tyne NE2 2DN
Since opening its doors, Ouseburn Coffee Co's Harvest Canteen has firmly established itself as Jesmond's go-to place for brunch. With whitewashed walls and floors, achingly cool minimal interior, and being the first to offer avocado toast (because yes, there was a time before that was all we ate), it was the first place to bring the trendy brunch spot to the Toon. You'll not find a full English here. Instead, the carefully curated menu offers a simple selection (including plenty of poached eggs with hollandaise varieties, fresh pancakes and granola) along with freshly baked goods. If you're looking for a good coffee and a place that will make your Instagram followers proud, look no further. With free wifi, the space is nice and airy, making it the perfect place to work from if you're looking for a base. Be sure to try the avocado smash: smashed avocado served with feta and lemon juice on fresh toast!

Long Play Cafe
48-52 Quayside, Sandhill, Newcastle upon Tyne NE1 3JF
A relative newcomer to the scene, Long Play Cafe combines good food with great vinyl. Situated right at the bottom of the Quayside (next door to Redhouse and Popolo), it only opened its doors last year. Since then their popularity (along with the record collection) has grown considerably! Enjoy fresh coffee and flip through their eclectic selection of new and used records, (all of which are reasonably well priced). Or just sit back and listen to records while you tuck into a hearty breakfast! The menu tends to swing towards the hearty side with thick, fluffy American pancakes topped with bacon and maple syrup, a range of breakfast butties and full English options. If you're looking for a traditional breakfast, the LPC breakfast is the perfect. Portion sizes are good without leaving you feeling too full. The same can't be said for their pancakes or French toast though which are both served piled high on your plate.

Ernest
1 Boyd St, Newcastle upon Tyne NE2 1AP
An old favourite of mine, Ernest is tucked right in the heart of Ouseburn. With its large range of seating and mismatched furniture, Ernest has the relaxed sort of atmosphere that's perfect for a lazy weekend brunch. The staff are always mega friendly and it's not the sort of place you ever feel rushed. Being just outside of the city, Ernest is a great place to escape the hustle and bustle. The menu is pretty large with a variety of breakfast, lunch and dinner options. Like all great places, breakfast is served all day. So if you're in the mood for a Chorizo and Halloumi Hash Bowl, it doesn't matter what time of day you get there. Served with chorizo, halloumi, herby potatoes, hollandaise and spinach, it's one of those dishes I always find myself ordering. If you can tear yourself away from your usual favourites though, the menu is pretty diverse and is regularly updated. Don't miss their homemade minty lemonade though!

Heaton Ingredient
174 Heaton Rd, Newcastle upon Tyne NE6 5HP
Younger sibling to the incredibly popular, Quay Ingredient, Heaton Ingredient is a quieter, slightly bigger version of their Quayside spot. Situated on Heaton Road just along from The Butterfly Cabinet, Heaton Ingredient is the perfect place if you're looking for a great breakfast without the hassle of a long queue. Offering the same menu as Quay Ingredient, it's definitely making a name for itself as one of the best breakfast spots in Heaton. Combining hearty Full English offerings, fresh Craster kippers, boiled eggs and soldiers, and a variety of poached egg options, what I love about Heaton Ingredient is that it has something for everyone. Whether you're clean eating and wanting something mega healthy and rich in protein, or just wanting to sink your face into a good old fry up. There's not many places that get the balance right, but Heaton Ingredient manages it. If you're looking for something a little different, try the asparagus spears wrapped in parma ham, served with a little pot of hollandaise.

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