We noticed last week that the Silver Giraffe in Ryton has changed hands, or at least we think it has, because there’s a different name up and their Facebook/Twitter pages haven’t been updated for a bit. As you recall we had a bit of a hoo-hah with them, but I’m unsure as to precisely which individual we had the hoo-hah with because our disagreement was carried out electronically and it could have been any one of a number of staff, or indeed the owner. A lot of changes seem to have taken place at the SG since it first appeared a few years ago.
We’ve been meaning to try the Wood Oven in Wylam for ages, and we did in fact turn up one lunch time a few months back but unfortunately they were closed. They open during the evenings from 5pm onwards, I think just from Wednesdays to Sundays and shut on Monday’s and Tuesdays. I’m not sure about that though, so if someone from The Wooden Oven reads this and wants to correct me then I’ll amend the information accordingly. Heather and I booked a table on Thursday evening (the day we got married) for ourselves and a couple of close friends. It’s a very open plan restaurant with a clear view of the kitchen where you can watch proper chefs making everything from scratch. I knew they were proper chefs because they were wearing proper chef’s togs. The Wood Oven can be found on Trip Advisor but they don’t appear to have a dedicated website, however you can ring them on 01661 852552, or find them on Facebook The Wood Oven. I’ve lifted this next bit from their Facebook page, “Pizza made from minimum 24 hour double fermentation slow dough, baked in a very hot oven fired exclusively with hardwood.” The service was attentive but not intrusive and the food was fantastic and the pizzas had a completely different flavour to anything I’ve tried before. Most of us had at least two courses plus drinks, yet the final bill came to considerably less than we’d anticipated.
Our friend Pat books up for a few of us to spend a night at Matfen Hall every year shortly before Christmas. (The headline picture is of Matfen Village). Heather and I spent an extra night here, arriving on Friday and fully intending to spend the afternoon in the gym. In the event we spent the entire weekend reading, sleeping and eating. It was £175 for the room per night, which was bed, breakfast and evening meal. Last year we had a walk to Great Whittington and back because there was a pub there (The Queen’s Head) selling delicious food. Before we checked into our hotel on Friday we had a drive up to Great Whittington and spoke to a lady just outside of the Queen’s Head who I think may be the new owner. It’s still a pub but it’s now a Chinese restaurant too. Unfortunately they don’t open at lunch times, and obviously we’d already forked out for our supper at Matfen so for this reason we didn’t go back. Most pubs in the area serve traditional English food, and I think if I lived near there I would welcome the fact that someone has set up in business locally offering a change. We shall return in the New Year to try it out.
So my other half and me dined alone on Friday night, but by the Saturday evening our friends had joined us and the dining room was busy. Much to my delight there was a jazz trio providing live music Paul James Music playing the old standards to which I knew all of the words. Much to Heather’s chagrin (not to mention abject horror) I happily joined in. I’ve no idea whatsoever what she was whinging about, my singing voice is quite charming.
We stuffed ourselves silly and normally this would cause us to worry about having to go to Slimming World tomorrow, but here’s the thing; Heather has developed a brilliant new system. What you do is; jump on the scales, shut your eyes, get Tracey or to write down the figure in your book, close the book, open your eyes, jump off the scales, then go home and eat whatever you like. It works.