Rudolph's Restaurant at Fenwick Newcastle (Menu and Review) - a Christmas Pop-Up

 

Over the past few years, Fenwick has opened a pop-up Christmas cafe. I love visiting each year and it's a bit of a tradition. Sometimes, the theme links in with the Fenwick's Window theme and the Paddington Bear Pop-Up Cafe complete with Marmalade sandwiches had to be my favourite year. The theming was fab. 

Rudolph's Restaurant at Fenwick Newcastle (Menu and Review) -  a Christmas Pop-Up


This year's Christmas cafe is called the 'Rudolph's Restaurant'. Cute! The themed restaurant has opened nice and early and is available to book now (tables should be pre-booked online here). Yes, it is a little early but I for one could do with a little Christmas cheer right now. You can of course, book a date closer to Christmas if you prefer. I would recommend planning ahead as it is likely to be popular. 

You do not need to input any card details or pay up front when you book, and it is via Open Table.

Rudolph's Restaurant at Fenwick Newcastle (Menu and Review) -  a Christmas Pop-Up
The Paddington Pop-Up Christmas Cafe in 2007



Rudolph's Restaurant is located on the lower ground floor in Fenwick Newcastle. I would imagine it is in the same location as the previous few years and in the middle of the Christmas department. 

This year, it is table service only and customers should book according to current Government guidelines (at time of print, this is with your own household/support bubble only with a maximum table size of 6 but obviously, this could change). 

Snowman cakes from the Snowman pop-up cafe in 2018


I love the variety on offer at the Christmas cafe - you can simply pop in for coffee and themed cake or maybe treat yourself to a Christmas cocktail. You can order Christmas lunch, sandwiches or even festive afternoon tea (which is what I will be going for). Their children's menu is nice too and I think it will be a lovely treat to enjoy for both children and grown ups this festive season. 


Rudolph's Restaurant at Fenwick Newcastle Menu


Menus are subject to availability / change and allergen information is available from Fenwick on request. 



Rudolph's Restaurant Fenwick : Breakfast Menu

Breakfast is served until 11:30am (see children's menu further down this post for children's options). I absolutely love the sound of a festive breakfast complete with pigs in blankets and think this would be perfect to set you up before a day's Christmas shopping. 

Rudolph's Restaurant Fenwick : Breakfast Menu


Rudolph's Menu Fenwick : Main Menu 

The main menu features lots of Christmas classics including Parsnip and Chestnut Soup and Traditional Christmas Dinner alongside lighter sandwiches and some delicious sounding puddings. 

Rudolph's Restaurant Fenwick : Main Menu

Rudolph's Restaurant Fenwick : Festive Afternoon Tea Menu

The festive afternoon tea is what I have my eye on this year. Available from 12noon each day, it is priced at £14 per person which I think is really reasonable. I am looking forward to seeing the themed cakes as they are usually beautiful. There is a children's version too (see menu at the bottom of this post). 


Rudolph's Restaurant Fenwick : Festive Afternoon Tea Menu




Rudolph's Restaurant Fenwick : Drinks Menu 


The drinks menu looks fantastic and I think I would struggle to choose just one. Mulled wine, spiced apple, toasted marshmallow hot chocolate, Christmas tree G+T, Champagne cocktails......they all sound divine. 

Rudolph's Restaurant Fenwick : Drinks Menu

Rudolph's Restaurant Fenwick : Children's Menu 

The children's menu includes breakfast items, Christmas dinner, a nice veggie option and children's afternoon tea which can be served with hot chocolate. 

Rudolph's Restaurant Fenwick : Children's Menu


Just a little note to say that I know my readers are lush and wouldn't do this but restaurants are having lots of issues with no shows lately. If you cannot make your booking, please make sure you let them know with as much notice as possible. 

Rudolph's Restaurant Review 


We booked a table over October Half Term. Rudolph's Restaurant is next door to Costa on the lower ground floor in Fenwick Newcastle. A slightly different location to last year. The entrance is split in two, simply walk up to the check in desk with your name and you will be checked in / shown to your table. A few people have mentioned on Facebook that they have managed to just walk up and get a table without booking so if you fancy it on a whim, you could always try this. As we get closer to Christmas though I do think it will get busier and I strongly advise pre-booking. 


Rudolph's Restaurant : Decor & Ambience 


This is what really let the cafe down for me this year. The theming has really taken a step back and it almost feels like you are sitting in a BHS cafe. I know we are in tough times and retailers are struggling and I really feel awful saying this but at the same time, I do need to be honest. There are just a few candy canes on the walls, generic Christmas trees and stag head logos. 

I imagine this is due to social distancing but there is no cake counter to peruse this year, just a couple of model cakes on a table as you walk in. The music was really quiet too (which I know is another COVID guideline) and I could barely hear the Christmas tunes. Luckily for us, Heidi decided to sing alternative carols featuring Santa spreading Coronavirus to every house this Christmas instead which kept us amused. 

I also had a twinge of sadness as I looked around and spotted a fair few elderly ladies sitting alone eating a Turkey dinner with a glass of wine. Obviously this is not Fenwick's fault but it made me feel sad all the same. Usually when I visit a cafe in Fenwick I love to see all the ladies who lunch and imagine being just like them when I am their age. I know we can't but I wanted to invite them over to sit at our table. 

The service was fantastic, lovely waiting staff all wearing face coverings and keeping everything nice and clean. It was pretty speedy too - not much waiting around at all. 





Festive Afternoon Tea Review 


What I do like about Rudolph's is that you do not need to pre-order afternoon tea, you can just decide on arrival if it is what you fancy. Steve and I both decided to go with that option and I thought it offered really good value at £14 per person considering this is Fenwick and it is in the centre of town. 

For £14, you each get a hot drink, four finger sandwiches, two scones (with jam, clotted cream and butter) and three festive cakes. Fenwick will happily box up any leftovers for you to take home too.




The scones were absolutely gorgeous. Served warm, they were pretty perfect. Nice and light and not at all stodgy. I liked that you get two per person and that they were served with proper clotted cream too. 

The little cakes were also lovely. I loved their festive design and they tasted delish.  The red velvet Christmas trees were my favourite. I was pretty full up after sandwiches and scones so I shared my sweet treats with Heidi and Jack which worked well and kept the cost down a bit too. 

My only criticism would be that as the afternoon teas are pre-prepared a little in advance, the bread for the sandwiches wasn't as soft as it could have been. Just a minor criticism though and I wouldn't let this put you off. The fillings were generous. 




Children's Menu 


Heidi ordered the Christmas Pasta Shapes with Tomato Sauce which she really enjoyed. She finished it really quickly and it didn't touch the sides - high praise as Heidi is never usually the first one finished. 


Apologies that Jack looks a little drunk in this photo but of course he had to order the cod goujons and chips. The chips were homemade and it was all piping hot and a decent portion. He really enjoyed them. Not very festive though! 


Children's Afternoon Tea 


Harry would never usually order from the children's menu but nothing from the main menu grabbed his attention. He was thinking about ordering a couple of scones, a cake and a drink but it actually worked out better value for him to just order the kids afternoon tea (he wasn't keen on the sandwich choices on the grown up option either). 

This turned out the be the best option for him and it was more than enough for a teen (one of the sandwiches is missing from the photos as Steve had already swiped it). It is pretty much the same as an adult's afternoon tea but with just one scone and more plain sandwich choices. 



Our bill was £53 which for afternoon tea for three plus two hot meals and drinks in Newcastle was pretty good. Drinks are a little on the expensive side so I am pleased they were included in three of our meals. 

I really enjoyed the food, the service was good and I did think it was pretty good value. For me, the atmosphere was just really lacking. I don't think this is entirely Fenwick's fault - it is just really strange times at the moment isn't it. 

I am pleased we visited but for me, I probably won't re-book as it didn't have the wow factor or theming like some of the previous years (Paddington and Snowman themes) which has left me wanting more. 




Read next: 

20+ Christmas Events for Kids across North East England 


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Please follow social distancing rules & Government guidelines , respect the local area, leave no trace, take litter home, park responsibly and if somewhere is busy on arrival, please consider leaving and returning at a later date. 

Remember face coverings are required for indoor attractions / shops for those aged 11+ (usual exemptions apply)  

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2 comments

  1. Really balanced review. Thank you for sharing. I can see what you mean about the decor compared to previous years and the BHS vibe. The afternoon teas seem good value though and it’s a strong drinks list!

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  2. It’s such a good price for afternoon tea, but so sad that they are unable to have their usual gorgeous theming. You had me at pigs in blankets with my breakie though.. going to have to try that! Melis

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