As most of you will know, the County of Yorkshire has just a few more people than the aspirationally independent country of Scotland [Ecosse] with around 5.3m people. Whilst the independence movement in Yorkshire is embryonic [i.e. getting nowhere fast, thank goodness] that’s not to say we couldn’t annex a little more land to give us the edge, a bit of headroom v Scotland. The trouble is, there’s not a lot of choice around our borders where we could easily invade and plant the flag, as it were. Now, if Northumberland wasn’t separated from us by a big chunk of Durham, that would probably be the first choice. Trouble is, the supply lines would be too long and we’d have to travel through well, not exactly enemy territory, but Durham [It’s alright really – just kidding, honest]. So, our friends at Edon Tours Inc. had a little trip to Northumberland and stayed overnight at the Mizen Head, one of the places on our list. Here’s their view, and we’ll be checking it out by checking in soonish.
The Mizen Head, Bamburgh
I have been coming to Bamburgh regularly since the early seventies when I came on a biology field trip with 6th form college. Part of my learning experience was my first (illegal) pint of Newkie Brown and also my first hangover courtesy of 1.5 litres [52.8 fluid ounces] of Woodpecker cider (never to be consumed again!). Since then I have returned many times and stayed in an assortment of places in this village ranging from sleeping on the beach, the front seat of a Hillman Imp, a Caravan and hotels. The Mizen Head is a different calibre to the rest. Purchased and renovated in 2011, it has become the “go to” place in the area for food and a handy spot to stay as well. It’s really a restaurant with rooms but first impressions suggest that this relegates the quality of the rooms to second place. But they’re no afterthought, as our room was large and airy with two shower rooms with a toilet in each (not sure why), and has the feel of being recently refurbished and is rather nice.
A short walk from the pub and you are into Bamburgh and then a short walk from there to the beach. This is conveniently divided into two by the lighthouse. North of it is a beach which is often empty and it leads parallel to the golf course to Budle Bay, to the south is a long endless beach past the imposing aspect of Bamburgh Castle where, out to sea to the east, the Farne Islands seem to float on the horizon.
So to the food, first night spoilt for choice with local fish and meat
- North Sea Squid with Garlic Mayonnaise delicate tempura batter, tasty Mayo. Nicely cooked
- 10oz [0.28 kilograms] fillet steak and Béarnaise Sauce, Fries, and spring vegetables. Cooked to my liking
- Vanilla Ice Cream with toffee sauce. Just to round things off
The food was great, and with a lot of staff service was excellent and friendly. There was no dress code which was comfortable. The place on a Thursday was full by 8:00 always a good sign of quality.
…and the second night
- Mizen Head Soup – Crab and Tomato – A bit oily but very tasty.
- Scallop Thermidor – just right, some salad a few new potatoes and Spring Veg
- Crème Brûlée – just about had room for this one.
There is quite some wine around the place, but red by the glass is a Cabernet/Merlot or Shiraz.
Moretti is on draught and rather like Malbec is dangerous but nice!
Home tomorrow, but will definitely be back.
Hotel and restaurant The Mizen Head, Bamburgh