Over the past few years, Newcastle’s City Centre has had an abundance of new bars and restaurants popping up left, right and center. Variety is the word that sums up Newcastle's pub and bar scene. From cool, cutting-edge hangouts to homely, relaxed venues; the city caters to all tastes.
Louie’s Liquor Store NCL is the newest attraction to the Newcastle bar scene. The American-style dive bar in Newcastle’s Nelson Street offers a taste of the deep South with liquor, live music and whole host of mouth watering food. For the bars grand opening we were kindly invited by the team to the event; which included an overnight stay at Hotel Du Vin Newcastle, complimentary taxis to and from the venue and our food and drink at Louie’s. I’ve never actually stayed at Hotel Du Vin Newcastle before, I’ve dined and had drinks at the hotel’s bar, so this was all very exciting.
Being a tourist has it’s perks as you always know little details that you wouldn’t necessarily know if you aren’t from the area. Parking at Hotel Du Vin is charged at £10, which is a bargain, but, just a heads up, there is parking just across the road facing the River Tyne on Horatio Street and cost us absolutely nothing as the car park is free after 630pm.
Just a short walk from Gateshead Millennium Bridge and the Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art sits the stylish Hotel Du Vin. Previously HQ for Tyne Tees Shipping Yard the site has been dramatically converted into the home of this well-known hotel brand. The brickwork of the original Edwardian building contrasted against the heavy rope that winds its way across the terrace is a clear acknowledgement to the site’s heritage and the nautical theme runs throughout the hotel. Another nod to the locality of the hotel are the pictures adorning the walls – all related to the shipping industry and the people who worked there.
We stayed in spacious double room; which overlooked the outdoor terrace area. All the five star features you’d expect in a hotel of this stature were available; lighting in wardrobes, iron & board, cosy bathrobes, hairdryer, Nespresso coffee machine and a high quality mini-bar but if you’ve stayed at Hotel Du Vin before you know these touches come as standard. There was even a handwritten note left in our room, welcoming us to the hotel; which I felt was a nice, personal touch.
Champagne popped open, it was time to get ready as our taxi was booked for 7pm to take us to the launch event of Louie’s Liquor Store. When we arrived at the bar, the atmosphere was electric. Not only was it the eagerly, anticipated launch but it was also the evening of the Anthony Joshua v Andy Ruiz II fight. The city centre venue takes inspiration from the bars of the American Deep South, with spacious booths, a distressed wooden interior and a huge stage – ready for its one of a kind entertainment programme.
With wings, burgers, hot dogs, cocktails and craft beer served throughout the day and live bands adding a kick on Friday and Saturday nights, Louie’s Liquor Store is the place to be. The bar also has its own line of craft beers, brewed specifically for Louie’s Liquor Store, which is pretty cool, and free to play pool and fuseball tables.
You can see that the team behind Louie’s Liquor Store have worked really hard to transform the bar and is a real hub of entertainment and the finished design looks amazing. The team have created a space where it’s just as fun to visit midweek as it is at the weekend. It has something for everyone, during the week why not take part in their quiz night, food challenges, live comedy and music, and not forgetting Louie’s Liquor Store’s spin on an open mic night, dubbed “Sing for Wings” – hosted by David Stoker where the audience decides who is good enough to get a free serving of chicken wings.
It’s not hard to see why the new bar is so fantastic, when the brains behind the bar have been in this industry game for sometime now and are royalty on the Newcastle bar and club scene. To say we were looked after extremely well was an understatement, the hospitality was second to none and the food, my God,… I think we need to talk about the food!
We we’re served a platter each featuring the biggest and most mouthwatering selection of TO DIE FOR food I’ve ever been served. From succulent chicken, the juicy BBQ ribs, beef brisket and sausage, to name but a small few – I mean, talk about meat sweats. Since we’ve visited here, all I’ve done is talk to my friends telling them just how amazing the food here is! Even just writing about it now is making me just want to turn off my MacBook and head straight into Newcastle. their menu offers a large range of slow cooked, smoked and BBQ'd meat as well as beef jerky, burgers and wings – with more than 20 sauces to choose from. All of the food on the menu sounded right up my street and the platters we were served were the perfect was to sample what was to offer on their menu.
After one too many beers and bellies still full of food we decided to have a walk back to the hotel, mainly to try and sober ourselves up slightly… this didn’t exactly go to plan as my feet started to hurt and we ended up staggering into another bar, whoops!
The following morning, we were up early and headed down to breakfast… personally the best part of staying at a Hotel Du Vin in my opinion. I ordered the kippers, it’s kind of a tradition when we stay at a HDV, and the hubby just picked from the continental table as he was feeling slightly sorry for himself and my kippers sent him under.
What can I say, we had an amazing time during our time at both Hotel Du Vin Newcastle and Louie’s Liquor Store. The atmosphere was on another level at Louie’s and I can finally say my spark for visiting Newcastle’s City Centre for a drink on an evening has now returned, I’m 31 now folks; PJ’s and a night in is high on my agenda these days… My first stay at HDV Newcastle went above and beyond expectations too, I’ll certainly be returning as I’d love to try out one of their suites that over look the iconic River Tyne and sample their Sunday lunches, which I’ve had my eyes on for a while now!
If you haven’t visited Louie’s Liquor Store yet, I mean, what are you waiting for? If this post doesn’t do it for you (although I find that hard to believe), maybe this will, Monday – Friday throughout January they have a staggering 51% off food. Your table must be booked prior to arrival but for more information, please do head over to their Facebook page.
Please note: this visit was kindly gifted but I wasn’t asked to write a blog post.
Louie’s Liquor Store: www.louiesliquorstore.co.uk
Hotel Du Vin Newcastle: www.hotelduvin.com