Popular with couples out for dinner, groups of girls 'doing' lunch and shoppers in need of a post-retail therapy pit stop, Browns in Newcastle opened last summer among the classier eateries and bars on the city's Grey Street.
Even if you've never been in one of the Brown's chain bars before, it has the feeling of the familiar with it's classic French brasserie style. Welcoming grey leather booths, inviting high bar stools and polished chrome make it feel more refined than a trip to the local without being overly stuffy.
Set in the historical heartland, the venue ticks all the boxes whether you're heading out on the town, needing a place for a romantic date or if you've just had one of those days where a strong drink on a welcoming bar perch is in order.
Deciding just what to choose from the extensive menu will be the biggest challenge. The starters are light and tickle your taste buds without being too filling.
British classics such as steak and chips, fish pie and belly of pork compete for your attention, whilst lighter fish and salad dishes means there's something for the more sensible diner.
Pudding fans should definitely leave enough space for afters and plump for either a sweet staple like sticky toffee pudding, apple and cherry crumble or devour one of the signature 'Browns Brownie' options.
Go straight for the lengthy cocktail menu and pick your poison. Your old friends cosmo, Bellini and kir royale are all there alongside house favourites such as the Riveting Raspberry which was elegant to look at and moreish to drink.
The clever chaps in the restaurant have even done the hard work for you and paired some of the dishes with the appropriate cocktails so the booze can keep on flowing. And if the extensive wine list doesn't keep you occupied, the selection of house 'aftertails' will see you wobbling home with a satisfied glow.
Try meeting for cocktails when Browns' resident pianist is tinkling the ivories, giving drinks with the girls a very classy air.
Browns, 51 Grey Street, Newcastle upon Tyne, NE1 6EE. 0191 261 8210, browns-restaurants.co.uk
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