Friday, 21 April 2017

The Wildflower Hour


It sort of makes me sad when I am in and outside work, and almost everyone is carrying a branded cup or foodbag, be it Costa, Starbucks, Greggs, Pret A Manger (they seem to have lost their accents)  or any number of the brands you see on every high street and railway station. People justify it because "they know what they are getting". If you try to dissuade people from buying this homogenised sameness they will always excuse it with a variation on the above excuse.

In Newcastle, you have no excuse because there are so many independent places where you can eat, get coffee, tea or whatever and today I'm going to gush over Wildflower cafe and art space on Westgate Road.

Firstly it's ten minutes walk from St James' Park , a place awash with student accomodation and therefore students. When I was at sixth form college I would have loved a place like Wildflower, but todays students seem to need a label on everything they buy.

The food is vegan. I'm not vegan, but I like good food, and I like to have something different. Today I was in two minds, the Lentil Dahl or Spanish Tomato Soup . I went for the soup (which also had a fair amount of lentils) , with a brown spread roll and a very green mango and papaya smoothie. Until I walked in I hadn't a clue what I was going to have, but it was gorgeous.

As I sat down Wire's "Outdoor Miner" came on the sound system and Asher told me about the joint smoking proprietor of a cafe up the road having a mini rave as he waited for customers.

I was soon joined by a big party of people to come and sample the delights of the cafe in the wonderfully art decorated welcoming surroundings, so I'd just got my order in in time.


Wildflower also host lots of events and themed meals and gatherings, and I love seeing how well attended these are and love the fact that it's popularity is growing thanks to the hard work of Jessica and Asher. They even have their vegan cookery slots on Tyne and Wear TV (and the vegan custard creams are lush).

If you live in Newcastle and haven't visited this place , shame on you, because it really is wonderful. It's the sort of place the media will airbrush over because it's not a big money brands, but for me it's the perfect sort of brand because it surprises me consistently with food and events and I try to eat there once a week, and I have to be honest the exercise walking the hill probably does me good and walking back down you get great views of the Tyne Bridge and The Sage.

It's very close to the town centre and if you message them on Facebook they will tell you what's on (the menu) and are open to suggestions for food ideas. Jess and Asher are both at least ten years younger than my girls so I'm old enough to be their grandad, but home I don't act that way.

So I will leave you with Wire's "Outdoor Miner" and I have the anticipation of what new delights will be served up next week.  The weekend is her.. Enjoy

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